Customers who can’t read about your product or service in their language are six times less likely to buy from you.
To increase global sales the Common Sense Advisory research firm has one suggestion: translate into more languages.
This is the conclusion of the translation industry think tank after conducting an eight-nation survey among 2,400 consumers on 3 continents, including people from Brazil, China, France, Germany, Japan, Russia, Spain and Turkey.
In their report, Can’t Read Won’t Buy, the Common Sense Advisory reported that on average, 52% of people reported that they would buy only at websites where product or service information is presented in their language. (This figure jumped to 60 percent in France and Japan.)
However, when language skills were taken into consideration, people were six times less likely to buy from a site that didn’t speak their language.
Willy Brandt, former German Chancellor, was echoing a common sentiment when he said:
“If I’m selling to you, I speak your language.
If I’m buying, dann müssen Sie Deutsch sprechen.”
The larger the purchasing price of the product or service, the more Willy Brandt’s famous quote holds true. The vast majority (85.3%) of the respondents of the Can’t Read Won’t Buy survey said that having pre-purchase information in their own language was a critical factor in buying insurance and other financial services. At the same time, just 45.8 percent said that language was important when buying clothes on the web. This led the Common Sense Advisory to conclude that “The more valuable an item, the more likely it is that someone will want to read about the product and buy it in their own language.”
Language is so important that 56.2 percent of respondents considered that information in their own language was more important than a low price.
When companies don’t provide professional translations of their content, potential customers must find their own solution. Hundreds of millions each month turn to online translation engines such as Google Translate and Microsoft Bing. This is a dangerous trend for companies. Leaving the translation of their online content to generic translation engines can be brand-damaging.
Global companies know that well translated content grows brand awareness and international sales. At Lexcelera, we know that too, which is why we bring together people, processes and technology to help you reach your customers, no matter what language they speak.
We will leave the last word on this subject to the great statesman, Nelson Mandela: