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Boost Your Sales with Localization Services

In this article, we will focus on digital market trends, online sales, estimations on what will happen shortly, how COVID-19 impacts those estimations. Explore how your business can take advantage of this situation and adapt to it with the help of Professional Translation and Localization Services.

Author: Fred Visnevsky

Boost Your Sales with Localization Services: Take advantage of the post-COVID-19 Digital Web Landscape with the help of Professional Translation and Localization Services

The Digital web landscape is continuously shifting and changing, with its popularity always on the rise. The recent outbreak of COVID-19 will further boost the already dynamic growth of the web and push businesses from across the globe to sell their products and services on the digital landscape.

The Impact of COVID-19 on to the Digital Landscape – An Example based on Google, Twitter and Amazon

Our modern world is becoming more and more digitalized by the day; after all, it's 2020 outside the window. The beginning of the new decade has been quite rough for all of us, but when it comes to business and the economy, some sectors may lose more than others. Meanwhile, some may even increase their share during this turbulent period.

While there are countless examples from across the world, we will base ours on three very well known brands: Facebook, Google, and Amazon.

Ad spending is falling off a cliff. This ad spending situation is particularly visible in recent reports of ad revenue earnings from Facebook and Google (ad revenue being a significant part of both of their business).
Both of the internet giants have reported a significant decline in ad spending since the start of the COVID-19 epidemic that is estimated to total approximately $44 billion in worldwide ad revenue, which has simply evaporated since the beginning of the year. And while both of the companies are still highly profitable:

  • Google projected revenue to be about $127.5 billion (down by $28.6 billion, 18% decline)

  • Twitter projected revenue to be about $67.8 billion (down by $15.7 billion, 19% decline)

(Data courtesy of Cowen & Co. https://www.cowen.com/)

What is interesting, based on the example of Twitter, is their data for actual usage of their platform in the case of Italy:

  • "We've seen up to 70% more time spent across our apps since the crisis arrived in the country."

  • "Instagram and Facebook Live views doubled in a week."

  • "We have also seen a messaging increase of over 50% and time in group calling (calls with three or more participants) increase by over 1,000% during the last month."

Group Call Time (minutes) in Italy

The above strongly suggests that even though currently consumer spending power, and as a consequence, the spending power for many businesses across the globe has shrunk; nevertheless, this is only a temporary occasion as consumers shift their priorities depending both on the environmental and economic situation.

A fantastic recent example is visible in the case of Amazon. Contrary to both Google and Twitter, Amazon is doing well, really well in fact:

Amazon Stock Price

"Amazon.com Inc. shares closed at a new high Tuesday, as the e-commerce and cloud-computing powerhouse continues to look like a safe target for investors in a rocky time."

Jeremy C. Owens

The lion’s share of this booming growth is the outbreak of COVID-19 and Amazon's ability to supply consumer goods during this outbreak. This situation makes Amazon a highly attractive "safe-haven," so to speak to investors, resulting in the highest earnings per share and booming share value for the company.

Cowen analysts state that: "In most verticals, Amazon has seen an ‘enormous increase in demand' as shoppers are forced to stay home, essentially creating an extended Prime Day/Black Friday type of situation."

This "trend" is visible across a large variety of industries that offer their services online. The most exciting aspect is the "forced adoption" of the usage of the web for purchases or the utilization of services. Digital purchases are becoming popular among groups of people that have never used them before. For example, consumers shopping for groceries online.

Findings in a recent survey by RBC Capital Markets demonstrated that COVID-19 had forced many people to start grocery shopping online.

Have you purchased groceries Online?

Have you purchased groceries Online?

And to their surprise, online grocery shopping turned out to be very convenient. The result of this recent development affected future consumer prospects for online grocery purchases.

"More than half of those who bought groceries online during the COVID-19 pandemic believed the experience would permanently increase their willingness to buy groceries online, and one-third had ordered groceries online for the first time in the past 30 days."

This information is further enhanced by the data from Google Trends for the search term "Online Grocery," which has skyrocketed.

Online grocery search term

Mahaney wrote: "We believe that online grocery shopping may now become a habitual practice among shoppers."

The same statement today, and especially in the near future, will become even more relevant as consumers shift their priorities from not only locally available goods or services, but extend their searches into the web.

The growth of the internet and services available to consumers in it will only continue to spiral upwards. Meanwhile, the global economy is predicted to bounce back shortly. Consumers are still out there, and their numbers are growing; it’s merely the tools and approach to reaching out to them that are shifting towards internet-based ones.

Global Digital Sales and the Booming Growth of E-commerce

The lines between physical and digital sales are getting blurrier by the day. The recent COVID-19 outbreak hasn't changed anything in terms of the tendencies and trends of the global market; instead, it has most likely boosted the transition speed. It will only be possible to compare and analyze the effects of COVID-19 on global e-commerce by the end of this year.

When looking at the picture of retail sales as a whole, there is constant and steady year-to-year growth.

Total retail sales worldwide, 2017-2023

Total retail sales worldwide, 2017-2023

Trillions and % change

However, when analyzing the percentage share of e-commerce in comparison to global retail numbers, we can see massive growth (Data courtesy of 2019 Statista) that will almost certainly reach even more significant amounts due to the COVID-19 situation.

E-commerce share of total global retail sales from 2015 to 2023*

E-commerce share of total global retail sales from 2015 to 2023*

One thing is clear: the consumer of the near future will be even more inclined to make purchases or search for services online. For the vast majority of people, this is very convenient for both the consumer and the business.

The Booming Growth of E-commerce Outside of English-Speaking Countries and the Growing Importance of Localization

The analysis above clearly shows that e-commerce is growing rapidly across the globe, with further influence from the recent COVID-19 outbreak. By all predictions, it is estimated that by the end of 2020, global e-commerce sales will reach an all-time high of approximately $4.2 trillion, and $6.5 trillion by 2023.

However, when we split the statistical data from across the globe and analyze it from a regional perspective, another exciting development is visible.

Developing regions are leading the e-commerce growth charts, with the Asia-Pacific region alone, contributing to 25% of total global e-commerce growth, totaling to $2.27 trillion by the end of 2019. That's almost twice the figure of the North American region (14.5%).
The Asia-Pacific region is closely followed by the Latin American region, Middle East and Africa, Central Europe, and Eastern European regions.

Retail E-commerce Sales Growth Worldwide, 2019

Retail E-commerce Sales Growth Worldwide, 2019

When we analyze the top 10 countries from across the growth by their e-commerce sales, the absolute leaders are countries from Latin America and the Asia-Pacific region, with the supreme leader being Mexico.

Top 10 Countries Ranked by Retail E-commerce Sales Growth, 2019

Top 10 Countries Ranked by Retail E-commerce Sales Growth, 2019

However, growth numbers only show part of the picture. When we analyze the actual e-commerce sales conducted within the economies between 2018 and 2019, the absolute leader is China, with three times the volume of goods and services sold over the web, dwarfing the next most prominent country on the list, the USA.

Top 10 Countries Ranked by Retail E-commerce sales 2018-2019

Billions & % change

Country 2018 2019 % Change
China $1,520.10 $1,934.78 27.3%
United States $514.84 $586.92 14.0%
United Kingdom $127.98 $141.93 10.9%
Japan $110.96 $115.40 4.0%
South Korea $87.60 $103.48 18.1%
Germany $75.93 $81.85 7.8%
France $62.27 $69.43 11.5%
Canada $41.12 $49.80 21.1%
India $34.91 $46.05 31.9%
Russia $22.68 $26.92 18.7%

But how can this situation be taken advantage of? The solution is to use Localization services, which will be essential to the success of your business in the global arena over the next decade.

The Growing Importance of Localization Services

Before we get into the details of how Localization will help your business address this developing situation, here’s a brief reminder of what Localization is.

"What is Localization? - Localization is defined as the linguistic adaptation of content for the target region, its languages, and cultural particularities to make it appropriate, easily understandable, and comfortable to use for local native language speakers." (read more on the topic of Localization in our article)

The Localization of the past was a feature that many companies approached as "nice to have," however, the Localization of the future will be the core element of a successful global and regional expansion strategy applicable to any business in any industrial sector. Localization allows your business to be competitive on any market across the globe while sustaining consistency for your business across the board.

Localization Services are highly effective and beneficial to your business

In a report based on a survey of localization users, the Localization Industry Standards Association (LISA) recently stated that the typical business achieves a return on investment (ROI) of US$25 in revenue for each US$1 it spends on Localization. You can find out additional information in our recent article on the topic of how to maximize your ROI from Localization.

Additionally, in our recent study on the importance of Website Localization, it was found out that people will always prefer websites available in their native languages. In fact, 54.7% of respondents always prefer websites available in their native language, and with an overwhelming 78.6% of respondents making online purchases only from websites that are available in their native language.

This data demonstrates that once it goes beyond a mere search for information and gets down to the decision-making process of making an actual financial transaction, Localization of information is crucial for a user to make that next step: the purchase of goods or services. A user wishes to understand the information about a product or service as well as possible in his native language before they will make the next step. At this stage, any business must present that information as clearly as possible to that potential customer.

An Example of Highly Successful Localization

There is a plethora of successful localization examples from across the world; however, we will base ours on the recent success of the beauty products manufacturer 100% Pure. Purity Cosmetics Inc., the owner of 100% Pure cosmetic brand, through their current localization efforts, has managed to Quadruple their year-on-year profits.

This growth was achieved by fully localizing all of their products, redesigning them to appeal to the local audience, Localization of all of their digital platforms, and full compliance with the local law system. Localization efforts have resulted in booming growth both Digitally in China and locally through a chain of stores, with over 70% of their sales coming from the Web platform.

"You have to do it for that market. The demands are different. The culture is different."
"The way I operate in China is I want to make sure I don't make the mistake many companies have made before, which is to take a U.S. business mindset and apply that to China. It doesn't work. You have to operate locally,"

CEO Ric Kostick

Localization Service provides you with the toolset necessary to conduct an expansion, and this applies to any business in any sector of the economy.

How to Start Your Translation and Localization Journey

We have now established the need for Localization Services, and the crucial role Localization will play after the COVID-19 situation is over, especially over the next decade. In essence, we will list several of our past articles that will further guide you on your upcoming journey with relevant and helpful information about the Translation Industry and Localization Services.

1) Working through a Professional Translation Company

By working through a Professional Translation Company, also known as Language Service Provider (LSP), you assure that your content will be translated by native-speaking professionals with prior expertise in their respective fields, quality in mind, consistency, and a price decrease over time.

2) The Importance of Localizing your Website

Localization has a positive influence on the consumer decision-making process concerning how they choose a product or service. In our article on the Importance of Website Localization, we presented the results of an in-depth study on a large group of non-English natives and how the Localization of a website into their native language influences the consumer decision-making process concerning a specific good or service.

3) The SEO benefits of Website Localization

SEO, which stands for Search Engine Optimization, plays a vital role in the modern digital ecosystem, as it directly influences the discoverability of your web platforms to a potential customer. Famous SEO expert Neil Patel has managed to increase his web traffic by 47% only by Localizing his Website into various new languages. Website Localization resulted in a large number of unique visitors and clients as a result.

He states that:

"The majority of Internet users aren't from the United States.

So, if you are banking on all of your traffic being English-speaking, you might be missing out on a lot of traffic.

A simple change to my own site to accommodate for other languages gave me a nearly 50% boost in traffic."

Neil Patel

But the best part is that Localization not only improves the traffic from target language countries, but also boosts the SEO rating of your platform as a whole, so your source language will benefit as well.

In our recent article, we thoroughly discuss the topic of Website Localization and how it impacts your SEO. Find out more in our blog post.

4) Localization Return on Investment (ROI)

The correct calculation of ROI is crucial for any business, especially when there are multiple decision-makers involved.

The ability to provide relevant data and estimations can be essential in getting the necessary funding for the project, for example, Website Localization, which can be quite costly in specific scenarios.

That's why we have prepared a compelling guide outlining the core elements of correctly calculating your ROI for a Localization Project. This article can serve as a guideline in your task of developing an accurate ROI calculation for Localization. Find out more in our article.

The Bottom Line

With the exposure of society to the COVID-19 pandemic, some of the core principles and behaviors relating to how we search for products or services necessary for our daily life (and not only) have undergone a drastic change. People, as a result of quarantine and potential exposure to COVID-19, have become more cautious. They have begun to spend significantly more time on the internet searching for goods and services and make purchases online. Plenty of people, to their surprise, found that this is convenient and they would like to continue to do so in the future.

As a result, this will be a significant boost to the overall global usage of the steadily growing internet as a whole.

This recent development is not something new. The internet is growing by the day, and by all predictions coverage and people’s ability to access the web will only increase. As a result of the web, the user base will continue to grow over the next decade at a steady pace.

The Internet user base growth is something that businesses from across the world have to take advantage of. The Internet user base will skyrocket in developing economies and regions such as the Asia-Pacific/Africa/Eastern-Europe/South America. In short, the developing markets.

All of those markets share one common factor – that English, for the absolute majority of their population, is not the native language. Businesses that provide their goods/services and information in the native language of the target market will become highly successful in both the short term and, especially, the long term.

Localization Services are the key to success in the near future. High-quality Localization of your product or service and its accompanying platforms such as websites or e-commerce platforms will be an essential element on your way to success in the global arena. Localization is relevant and applicable to any business in any sector and market.

All of this and more is achievable using a Professional Translation Company such as AD VERBUM.

Get in touch, and we will help you on your path to Global Success.

Start Translating Today

References:

References
About Facebook. 2020. Keeping Our Services Stable And Reliable During The COVID-19 Outbreak - About Facebook. [online] Available at: <https://about.fb.com/news/2020/03/keeping-our-apps-stable-during-covid-19/>

Cowen. 2020. Cowen. [online] Available at: <https://www.cowen.com/>

Neil Patel. 2020. How To Increase Your Traffic Through Content Translation. [online] Available at: <https://neilpatel.com/blog/translate-content-different-languages/>

Owens, J., 2020. Amazon Stock Hits Record High On Hopes For A Coronavirus-Related Boom. [online] MarketWatch. Available at: <https://www.marketwatch.com/story/amazon-stock-hits-record-high-on-hopes-for-a-coronavirus-related-boom-2020-04-14>

Owens, J., 2020. Amazon Stock Hits Record High On Hopes For A Coronavirus-Related Boom. [online] MarketWatch. Available at: <https://www.marketwatch.com/story/amazon-stock-hits-record-high-on-hopes-for-a-coronavirus-related-boom-2020-04-14>

RBC Thought Leadership. 2020. COVID Consumer Spending Tracker - RBC Economics. [online] Available at: <https://thoughtleadership.rbc.com/covid-consumer-spending-tracker/>

Rbccm.com. 2020. RBC Capital Markets. [online] Available at: <https://www.rbccm.com/en/>

Rbccm.com. 2020. RBC Research. [online] Available at: <https://www.rbccm.com/en/insights/rbc-research.page>

Spangler, T. and Spangler, T., 2020. Facebook, Google Could Lose Over $44 Billion In Ad Revenue In 2020 Because Of Coronavirus. [online] Variety. Available at: <https://variety.com/2020/digital/news/facebook-google-ad-revenue-loss-coronavirus-1203544502/>

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