Best Practices for Multilingual Websites to Attract Your Target Audience

Best Practices for Multilingual Websites to Attract Your Target Audience
Beth Worthy

Beth Worthy


Do you want to upsurge your website traffic? One of the best and easiest ways to achieve that is by optimizing your SEO for different languages and countries.

According to CSA research, 75% of online shoppers prefer buying products and services in their native language.

If done correctly, multilingual content can help companies appeal to more customers and subsequently boost overall sales.

Today, we will discuss eight best practices for multilingual websites to improve your site’s appeal.

1. Select a flexible website template

Creating a multilingual website is like walking on a tightrope. You need to balance between a global image and personalizing with regional variations in aesthetics. Website layout and design must align with the preferences and tastes of the worldwide audience.

Therefore, you must select a format that can be flexibly customized while keeping the core elements the same across different versions of the site.

Also, the design must support text contraction, expansion, bidirectional, and right-to-left scripts.

2. Align with different browsing habits

Based on the countries where the products are marketed, you must gather data on their internet speed, browsing type, and mobile data cost.

For example, if you target a nation where most of the browsing happens through cell phones, you need to customize your website accordingly.

Also, consider researching critical areas like whether an unlimited data plan or Wi-Fi is readily available in the target country.

3. Have a robust URL strategy

It would be best if you use a dedicated, stand-alone URL for marketing and search engine optimization (SEO) purposes.

This URL can later be redirected to another one that is more in tune with your organization’s URL convention.

4. Identify the contents to be translated

If engagement with the target audience is primarily through the content, then website translation is critical. That does not mean translating every word on the website.

For example, information like press releases or employment opportunities might not be relevant outside your home country.

You must, however, translate multimedia content so international customers can understand your content.

5. Customize the images and graphics for multilingual websites

Translating the content while ignoring the images would be detrimental to boosting multilingual SEO.

You must avoid embedded images as they cannot easily be translated without re-designing the graphics from scratch. You would also need to swap or re-design the images that do not translate well from one culture to another.

6. Have a consistent message tone and voice

Ideally, your brand must have a consistent voice, tone, and communication style.

You have spent a considerable of time creating your brand voice, so don't let it get lost in translation.

Instead, spend some time with a style guide and glossary for your language partners to work with.

These tools help ensure consistency in a brand voice even when the content is translated. Your multilingual website should provide a similar user experience to your English website.

7. Enable toggling between languages

Your website should have a feature that allows users to toggle between similar content or features between the multilingual and English websites as much as possible.

For example, persons using the National Cancer Institute can easily toggle between their Spanish and English language pages without going to the home page.

8. Adjust marketing content to international audiences

Successful marketing relies on emotional impact. Having a consistent brand tone will not be enough.

It would help if you also had a consistent emotional effect on the international audience.

Sometimes, that would need you to re-create a campaign from scratch rather than blindly translating it.

9. Hire a team of experts

Your multilingual website would need to build a solid and reliable connection with an international audience.

That requires a lot of focus and dedication to reach in a short period. To meet these objectives, you need to have a multidisciplinary team by your side.

10. Translation services

Most internet surfers worldwide do not prefer surfing websites in English. Therefore, they would not prefer shopping in one either.

As reported in December 2017, only 25.9% of internet users spoke the English language. Nearly 2.7 billion people with internet access are from non-English speaking countries. That's a lot of people trying to surf your website in their native languages.

Opting for website translation services would make your website more attractive to international buyers and boost your search engine rankings, thereby dramatically upsurging your brand value.

Avoid using AI or apps for translation because they are not always accurate.

GMR Transcription Services, Inc. is a transcription and translation firm that caters to diverse business sectors and offers fast, high-quality, reasonably priced, and professional website translation services.

Also Read: eBay Improving User Experience on Their Websites with Translation

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Beth Worthy

Beth Worthy

Beth Worthy is the Cofounder & President of GMR Transcription Services, Inc., a California-based company that has been providing accurate and fast transcription services since 2004. She has enjoyed nearly ten years of success at GMR, playing a pivotal role in the company's growth. Under Beth's leadership, GMR Transcription doubled its sales within two years, earning recognition as one of the OC Business Journal's fastest-growing private companies. Outside of work, she enjoys spending time with her husband and two kids.