Localization strategy - How to treat customers (2022)

Today, you're going to learn how to build your strategy for a successful globalization.

The best part?

We provide you with a step-by-step plan of what you need to get to your localization strategies.

We'll also show you some examples of major brands and how they did it.

What you can expect

What is a localization strategy?

A localization strategy is a way of dealing with a company's customers' purchasing habits, behavior, and cultural differences throughout globalization.

Why do you need it?

It will undoubtedly be difficult to develop local leadership, sales, and other skills. In a local market, there may be unanticipated obstacles, ranging from minor details to issues with complying with country-specific legislation.

With this in mind, globalization should be a step-by-step strategic process that takes into account the genuine cost and time required, as well as the possible prospects offered by new markets.

According to a study of harvard business review the management of the company which succeeded in going global acted like this:

  • They ensure that the company has the necessary expertise and abilities.
  • They match the size and breadth of the international opportunity to the firm's objectives and capabilities.
  • Likewise, they modify the firm's marketing policies and processes in response to the opportunity.
  • They guarantee that the firm's legal and ethical policies allow for international flexibility while adhering to corporate compliance.
  • They encourage a company culture that accepts some financial ambiguity and market volatility.

➡️ Ultimately, they have prepared well and accepted some mistakes to happen. That is also what you need for your localization strategy!

Because localized products and services better meet local market circumstances and minimize cultural barriers, professional localization helps to lower the barrier for new prospective customers.

Localization enhances your customer base by allowing more customers to learn about your items.

Build your localization approach (step-by-step)

Prepare

Get the right people involved in your company to do this project. And create a reasonable timeline for achieving the end goal.

Try to attract local talents: To get the right and experienced workers will may give you insights in the cultural aspects

Gather the inputs

To determine whether there is a strong potential to join the markets, it might be beneficial to send someone there to learn from local partners or individuals.

In addition, conduct the following research: Discover the facts and data about a new target country.

Learn how to determine prices: legal and economic variations in the target nation may be a barrier.

➡️ The most important part is to get a better understanding of which brands are your primary rivals and how consumers buy in that market. This will provide the structure for everything you do after that.

Create your vision

Your mission statement should describe what your company does and how it is different from other organizations in the new market.

Your vision statement should be a future state of what your organization wants to achieve over time with the project.

Build the plan

Make a international business plan: Evaluate your needs and goals

When looking at the content marketing side of things, you should setup a process to create the marketing message and what experience should be created in other markets (Messages, visuals, UX elements).

Successful marketing campaigns can help to test out if your strategy is working and if we're targeting the right audience.

Finally, do the customer segmentation which defines the different groups of people or organizations a company aims to reach or serve.

Make tests with localized content

Test your strategy by reaching out to potential buyers in new markets with your messaging.

To begin, make use of the slogans, key phrases, and CTAs identified in the marketing strategy when developing the plan.

Begin with a pilot project to get traction, and then consider localizing entire experiences based on the data.

The objective should also be to see if your communications can persuade them to engage with your business.

For example, moderated customer journey testing can assist you in understanding and appreciating acceptable ways of interacting with local cultures and meeting their specific buyer expectations.

A thumbs-up gesture, for example, may be acceptable in the United States or the United Kingdom but may be considered insulting in Australia.

Hire someone who can do customer experience testing; this is an important aspect of how customers connect with your business. Examine what your website visitors are doing and where they are clicking when they visit your site.

There are a lot of methods to simplify the continuing problem of maintaining excellent customer experience.

Put the strategy into practice

Ensure your project leads pushing things forward.

Build an internal and external strategy communication plan.

And setup the action plan for future work needed.

Also define the Key Performance Indicators (KPI) that measures the result will come to your organization from the actions taken.

Multi-lingual website

Usually, for a multi-lingual website the first thing to think about is the language URL format.


Source: WPML

These are the best practices from Google regarding the URL format:

  • For different language versions, there should be different URL
  • Use a hreflang-tag to help Google find the correct language
  • Use a single language for content and navigation on each page and avoid side-by-side translations
  • Let the user choose the page language, add hyperlinks to each language version

➡️ The below URL formats are recommended:

country-specific: yoursite.de
subdomains with gTLD: de.yoursite.com
subdirectories with gTLD: example.com/de/

Not recommended are URL parameters like yoursite.com?loc=de

Localization Checklist

If you have setup your localization-strategy and successfully decided how you will structure the corporate website, then it's time to start localizing your content.

The meaning of localization is adjusting your content to encourage customers in new markets to buy from you.

  • Decide how to integrate localization in the development process
  • Let your developer add new segments to translation management system
  • Let your translators start the work
  • Review the work of the translators
  • Deliver the content to the end users
  • Check your progress with project metrics

➡️ Especially with using a localization service, you can see the impact of your content and the strategy right away when enter new markets. You can also determine whether the strategy is working as intended.

Examples

Localization has clearly become a competitive advantage. If your business wants to enter and thrive in new markets in this global economy, you must localize your experience for people all around the world.

On the following lines, we show you popular brands which have their own successful strategy for localization:

1) World Wide Fund For Nature (WWF)

WWF is doing a lot to engage prospective audiences throughout the world.

wwf

By emphasizing the information that is most important to readers, the WWF is able to create a more appealing experience with content that is constantly new and current.

✅ It is not only translating its website; it is providing the appropriate material to the appropriate viewers.

2) Starbucks Coffee Company

The company's website has been localized, making it available in the local language and in accordance with local tastes.

Starbucks Coffee Company

They tailor the formulas and packaging to the market, emphasizing local ingredients and creative designs.

Starbucks, for example, was localizing its brand and adapting to Indian culture in India. It presents various goods with an Indian flavor and emphasizes tea over coffee since Indians are more associated with tea.

In the United Kingdom, Starbucks adapted to local tastes by including scones and bacon butties on select menus.

Even more examples from our clients you will find in our blog post about website localization

Summary

The strategy for effective localization is successful if you can gather the necessary information about your target buyers and devise a plan of action to match their expectations.

We hope this guide showed you what a strategy is and why it's important. With this basic knowledge you now maybe better understand the concept of localization.

Now we want to turn it over to you:

Do you plan to build up a localization strategy?

Are you going to test your slogans and CTA? Or maybe you’re going to use our checklist.

Or maybe you have a question about something you read.

Either way, let us know by leaving a message to [email protected] right now.

The implementation of the software part can be assisted by our team's extensive knowledge and the appropriate localization software of us.

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