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Global translations and a world of new opportunities

If your New Year’s resolution is to find new marketing opportunities, it can be hard to know where to start. It’s easy to think the economic woes in Europe and America could cast a shadow over the beginning of 2012. But online  global translations can be key to tapping into new, emerging markets and massively expanding your customer base.

The number of internet consumers has seen huge growth in the last decade – mainly among non-English speakers. And while it’s expensive to establish an on-the-ground presence in other countries, translating your websites is a relatively cheap way of tapping into new markets.

Lingo24 is already doing this, with a major global translations project for more than 40 dedicated, localised websites. Native-speaking translators and localisation experts ensure that each site has a genuine, local feel. This includes everything from researching the most popular keywords to ensuring the tone and cultural references are right.

For smaller businesses, translating the entire website for a potential target market can be expensive. A cheaper option is to test the waters in a number of countries by setting up “micro-sites” – just translating the main pages and information about key products. If it proves popular, you can then go ahead and expand the site.

The first big question is: which countries and languages? Most people have heard of the rapid growth in the BRIC countries (Brazil, Russia, India and China). But other emerging markets such as the CIVETS (Columbia, Indonesia, Vietnam, Egypt, Turkey and South Africa) and the SLIMMA group (Sri Lanka, Indonesia, Malaysia, Mexico and Argentina) are also starting to get attention.

Free tools such as  Google’s Global Market Finder can be a good starting point, by identifying demand for search keywords.

Of course, global translations can seem complex at first. But a little research, and expert help, can make it simpler than you might think. Lingo24 can advise on all aspects of foreign language internet marketing, translation and localisation.  It can also save time and resources by combining these services.  And integrating translations with your existing content management system makes it straightforward to keep multiple websites up to date.

Christian Arno, Founder and President, Lingo24

Christian Arno is Founder and President of Lingo24. He started the company in 2001 after graduating from Oxford University with a degree in languages. He has won numerous awards including HSBC Business Thinking and International Trade Awards (2010), and TAUS Excellence Award (2012) for innovative technology. He contributes to leading industry publications and has been featured on the BBC, in the Financial Times and other media around the world.

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