June 2016

How to automatically translate any website

 by anthony on  |
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Localizer's fantastic Automated Tasks feature allows you to set up specific translation rules that make sure all new content added to your site is instantly translated exactly in the way you want.     Go to the Phrases tab in your Localizer account, then select Untranslated Phrases from the dropdown menu. Hit the Advanced link on the right and the Set Up Automated Task button will appear. Set up your translation filters, then click the Set Up Automated Tasks button. On the popup screen, pick the type of translation you want or if you want to ignore all phrases for this filter. Name your task and hit the Enable Automation button. That wasn’t so hard at all now, was it? If you want to see or delete any tasks you’ve got set up, you can quickly and easily check them out by clicking on the Automated Tasks option under the Menu button. If you haven't started translating yet, check out the different types of translation you can use or take a look at our three click translation guide. Not using Localizer yet? Start a 7 day free trial or book a demo now!

3 types of website translation you need to know about

 by anthony on  |
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Translating your website with Localizer is extremely easy and you don't need to be an I.T. guru to do it. But before you go all gung ho and start translating your content, you need to understand the types of translation at your disposal. Not all translations are equal and it’s important that you can tell the difference between them before deciding which one you need. Below is a quick overview of each one. 1. D.I.Y. Translation We give you the tools and your in-house experts use them. Pros No cost of translation on the platform as you’re doing it all yourself Good for translating small pieces of content Cons Slowest form of translation (we can do it faster, I assure you!) You need experts in-house to do it properly Additional man hours will most likely result in spending more than if you opted for another translation type 2. Machine Translation Provides a straight translation of your content from one language to the other. Pros Translates your content instantly The cheapest translation option available outside of D.I.Y. Good to use if you’re in a hurry Cons Direct nature of translation sometimes results in confusing content Lack of human input means no context is accounted for 3. Professional Translation Provides a translation from a professional translator and accounts for more than just a straight translation. Pros The best translation available Gives you access to over 18,000 professional translators Provides context to your content to keep it relevant Search engine friendly No chance of confusing your visitors Cons None - this is the best quality translation you can get Conclusion We always recommend using a professional translation when you can as this gives you the best possible outcome and makes sure you reap the full benefits of localizing your website. If you’re not sure what your budget allows, check out our pricing plans for a better idea of what we can offer. You can always contact us for customized plans and pricing, so don’t be shy! Already picked out a translation? Take a look at our post on how to translate your content in three clicks. Not using Localizer yet? Start a 7 day free trial or book a demo now!

Translate your entire website in 3 clicks

 by anthony on  |
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Translating your website in-house is a pretty arduous task if you don’t have the right tools or expertise. But as luck would have it, Localizer is here to make your life easier by streamlining the translation process from start to finish. No more long lead times to get the job done; Localizer gives you everything at your fingertips so you can translate your entire website in just three clicks.   Tick the box beside the content you want to translate from your Phrases tab, or set up additional filters. Select the type of translation you want. Order your translation. Voila! The only thing left for you to do is put your feet up and watch your newly-translated content appear on your website. I know what you’re thinking: it can’t be that easy, can it? Yes, it certainly can. Localizer does the hard work so you don’t have to. Not using Localizer yet? Start a 7 day free trial or book a demo now!

Make any website multilingual with a single line of code

 by anthony on  |
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We know that globalizing your business is time consuming and sometimes life simply gets in the way of jobs that need to be done. That’s why we’ve made the Localizer integration process super simple, so you can get on with taking over the world. All you need to do is copy and paste a single line of code into your website theme and Localizer will start indexing your content each time someone visits one of your web pages. Best of all, you have the option to send it straight to your developer or do it yourself, because we’ve got a set of handy integration guides for you here. Can’t find the integration guide you need for your website? No problem, you can contact us via live chat 24 hours a day during weekdays.   Log into your Localizer account, hit the Menu button on the top right and select the Integration option. Copy the Localizer Javascript code or click Send to Developer if you need your developer to do it. Log into the Admin section of your website. Locate the core Theme files for the Header or Footer of your site (preferably Header). Find the tag and paste the Localizer Javascript code directly above this, then save your changes. That’s all there is to it, your website is ready for translation and we’re betting it took you less than five minutes to get sorted! Wondering where to go from here? Check out the types of translation you can choose from, or head over to our three click translation guide for an overview on how to start translating your content. Not using Localizer yet? Start a 7 day free trial or book a demo now!  

7 Reasons You Should Use SaaS

 by anthony on  |
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Software as a Service, or Saas, is one of the fastest-growing commodities in the online space. Salesforce defines SaaS as “a way of delivering applications over the internet – as a service”. SaaS removes the need for businesses to download and maintain software by simply accessing the service they need over the internet. From a traditional sense, companies have had to build and manage their own I.T. network to do business online and the majority of the time, this comes with a hefty price tag. SaaS removes the need for internal systems and saves businesses both time and money by providing cloud-based, instant services. Even if you already have your own I.T. infrastructure, it won’t cater for all of your needs, which is where SaaS comes in. Without bragging too much, Localizer is a great example of a quality SaaS platform as we provide all the translation and localization expertise you could ask for, accessible anywhere you have a device connected to the web. If you’re thinking of integrating SaaS into your business model, here's why it's a good idea: 1. Cheaper Entry Costs SaaS is generally a subscription-based model where you can sign up for a period of time with set costs, giving greater clarity of your total expenses from the outset. When you enlist the services of a SaaS platform, you get everything you need without having to shell out on expensive upgrades or new hardware. The SaaS platform manages everything for you, making for a more streamlined process that involves less manpower while saving you time and money. The readymade expertise also means you get the desired result much faster than if you handled everything internally. 2. Carefree Upgrades Upgrading and maintaining services can be time consuming and painful. Using SaaS, you’ve got no responsibility to upgrade the service or keep your information secure. The only thing you need to do is agree on reasonable terms of service that the SaaS provider should adhere to and let them worry about the rest. If there’s any new hardware, software or patches that need to be added then it’s the domain of the SaaS provider to look after these. You're paying for the service so that you don't have to worry about any of these things. 3. Simple Integration All good SaaS platforms have the ability to integrate seamlessly with your existing website and should be able to adapt easily to the way your business operates. They’re also customizable so that you use only the features that you need. SaaS platforms will help your business grow and be scalable enough to handle the extra work that growth brings. There should be no breakdown of service as traffic and demands on the platform increase. 4. High Adoption Rates Salesforce indicate that SaaS platforms have high adoption rates, because the software is readily available on web browsers that people use every day. The level of comfort associated with familiar browsers reduces the learning curve of anyone using a SaaS platform as it works in these browsers, making people more open to using it. This is really important as there’s not much point investing money in a SaaS platform if nobody in your business is willing or able to use it. Internally, usually only one or two people have expertise in certain areas but because a SaaS platform provides the expertise, you can share the workload by assigning multiple people with login credentials to use it. 5. Fast Deployment and Decisions Spending money on outsourced products or services can often be met with skepticism as to whether it actually works or not. The good news is that most SaaS platforms offer a trial period to test out their software and get a better understanding if it suits your needs. Not only that, SaaS initiatives can be rolled out much quicker than internal efforts, so you can see the benefits almost immediately. You'll also usually get the option to book an online demo, where a representative will take you through how the product works and reduce the learning curve even further if you decide to use it. 6. Only Pay What You Want Once you’ve footed the bill for the initial entry costs, you’re then in complete control of what you spend and when you spend it. The subscription-based model means you’ve got a clear monthly or yearly forecast of what you’re going to spend on the platform. As your business grows, the features you need will change and you can add or remove them according to your requirements. Every SaaS platform will have a pricing structure for each new feature and will invariably be cheaper than running it in-house. If something isn’t working for you then you can just remove the feature, but spending money on something in-house means you’re stuck with it, regardless of whether it works or not. 7. Work Anywhere or Any Time Business is changing and companies now need the ability to work fluidly at any time or place. Customers are more demanding than ever and reaching a global audience means you need to be switched on at all times. Using a SaaS platform gives you the ability to log in and work from anywhere, at any time, by simply having a device with an internet connection. Tending to customer complaints, answering queries or even doing some customer research are all possible because SaaS platforms fly high in the cloud. Many SaaS platforms are also optimized for mobile or have a mobile app, so you don’t even need a laptop to get your work done.   Final Word SaaS is a really effective way to add value to your business and save time and money all in one fell swoop; and it's only going to continue growing as more businesses begin to understand the benefits it brings. IDC predicts that by the end of 2019, the SaaS market will hit almost $113bn at an annual growth rate of 19.3% and that cloud software will account for $1 of every $4.59 spent on software. Jump on the SaaS train now by trying Localizer for free!

5 Tips for Selling to a Global Audience

 by anthony on  |
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Running an online business in today’s marketplace is tough work. Almost every business is in the same boat and there’s not much wiggle room to get your head above the parapet. To make more sales, you have to be seen; and to be seen, you have to stand out from the crowd. So how do all of the big, global companies do it? I’ll give you a hint, it’s in the name. They stand out as global companies because they’re just that: global. Think of companies Apple, Microsoft and Samsung – they’re absolutely everywhere. But to maximize your selling potential with a global audience, you need to put in some ground work:   1. Set Up Local Contact Channels Selling to a new global market is fantastic and your sales will fly through the roof if you do it right. But don’t forget that the global companies we mentioned all have localized contact channels. There’s no worse experience as a customer than finding your new laptop has broken down and when you call the manufacturer, the person on the end of the line can’t speak a word of your language. So, for everything from live chat to phone or email, make sure you have someone that is fluent enough to pick up the phone or type a message in the language of your customers. And don’t forget about time zones! Your customers won’t all be online at the same time, so you need to make sure you have someone available at a time that’s most convenient for them. If you have the resources to put in 24 hour local customer support, then that’s even better. 2. Translate Professionally You wouldn’t serve up gobbledygook to your current customers, so why serve it to your new ones? Machine translation services are the cheapest way forward, but they really aren’t the best. They’re cold-hearted beasts and don’t care about anything else other than translating a word from one language to the other. No context, no human touch. Nothing but a translation. Think of it this way, you’re pumping a lot of time and effort into creating quality, SEO friendly content on your website, only for it to be torn to shreds by a machine translation's indifference. Loosen your purse strings and invest in a professional translation that can give your content the love and attention it deserves. Your customers will thank you for it and so will your sales! Professional translation removes the risk of being misunderstood or misrepresented by your content and makes sure your brand message is put across in the way you want. 3.Use Country Code Top Level Domains (ccTLDs) A ccTLD is a domain that’s assigned to every country so that search engines can distinguish one website from another. Take eBay, for example, who use a ccTLD for pretty much all of their countries – they’ve got .co.uk for the UK, com.au for Australia and .ie for Ireland, to name but a few. Using the wrong country domain is the same as taking a look at the phone book in the UK and hoping to find a phone number for someone in Australia. Sure, you might be able to find it on rare occasions, but most of the time you probably won’t. Using a different ccTLD for each country you’re selling to will help search engines recognize that this domain is explicitly meant for people in that country. Sometimes user settings mean it’s not always possible for visitors to be displayed the right version of your site, so include a language widget to make it easy for them to swap to the one they want. 4. Know Where Your Customers Are I probably already know what you’re already thinking: Facebook, Twitter, Google and YouTube. Sure, they’re the biggest on a global scale, but when you’re down to the nitty gritty of specific markets, you have to look past these and find out what works for individual countries. Take China, they’ve got almost a billion potential customers for you to go after and if you assume Facebook and Twitter are going to work then you’re doomed to fail. Why? Because both of them are banned in China, as are YouTube and Google. China is a completely different market and to have any chance of breaking it, you’ll need to use the likes of QZone and Weibo, their Facebook and Twitter equivalents that hold the majority of market share. Then there’s Russia, boasting 143 million potential customers – V Kontakte is by far and away the biggest social platform there, with Facebook practically non-existent. Social media isn’t even the biggest channel in South Korea, where a blogging platform called Naver uses word of mouth to spread the joy about products and services. Do your research in each new country before deciding on a plan of attack. 5. Use Local Sales Campaigns Every country will respond to different types of sales campaigns and have varying peak times to run them. Holiday-focused deals won’t be applicable in every country, because not all holidays fall on the same dates; or sometimes even at all. A Christmas price bonanza is the go-to move of many online businesses and yes, it’s really effective. But what about the countries that don’t celebrate Christmas? That’s right, there are some unfortunates that don’t have Christmas and these include some of the biggest markets in world. If you’re planning on sending some holiday spirit to Japan and China (Hong Kong and Macao aside), then you can forget about it because they’re not interested. Black Friday sales in France? Nope, not a thing I’m afraid. I could go on, but you get the idea. There’s no “one size fits all” sales strategy that will work on a global scale, you need to localize your sales campaigns to match the needs of every country you’re selling to. Final Word There’s no easy way to globalize your business. It’s even hard to grow in a local market these days. The only thing you can do is arm yourself with as much local knowledge as possible, do your research and don’t be afraid to spend a little money to get a better quality translation. Localize your website as best you can and keep making improvements along the way. It won’t happen overnight but you’ll get the right results in time if you keep doing the right things. Rome wasn’t built in a day, but I’m sure you’ll agree that the end product was pretty impressive.

3 reasons to localize your website

 by anthony on  |
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It’s possible that your business has, up to now, overlooked the value of localizing your website and maybe even missed out on key growth opportunities in doing so. But don’t feel bad if you’re guilty of this, because you’ve joined a long list of others that have fallen into the same trap at some point. There are many reasons for this, but one that frequently pops up is a general lack of understanding around the concept of localization and the potential benefits it can offer your business. We’re all aware of free tools like Google Translate, which are far from perfect but do offer translation services at their most basic level. Localization is a far more in-depth and specialized process. It’s not just translating your content; it’s adapting and tailoring it to whatever your target audience needs, while adding a context and human tone that a straight translation just doesn’t offer. But why does this matter to your business? Let’s find out:   Avoid Being Misunderstood As we discussed in a previous post, leaving your content in the hands of a machine translation service is a risky maneuver. Machine translations don’t account for the context of your post or add any tone of voice, they take your content and stick it into another language, regardless of any other factors. These issues won’t impact too much on low priority pages, but are absolutely crucial when you’re trying to convey your brand message or present your business to new markets. The direct nature of a machine translation runs the risk of creating confusing content that your customers will struggle to understand. Put yourself in your customers’ shoes – would you really purchase something from a site that is littered with grammatical errors and looks generally unprofessional? If you answered “no” (we hope you did), then you understand the negative sales impact this will have on your business. Losing sales in the short term ultimately means losing customers in the long term, as you can imagine people are unlikely to return to your website if they’ve had a poor experience. Retaining your customers can also have a potentially massive impact on your profits – Rosetta Stone indicate that improving customer retention rates by just 5% gives your business the potential to increase profits from 25% to 80%. Without proper localization of your site, you run the risk of being misrepresented by your content and misunderstood by your customers, both of which will impact negatively on your retention rates. To steal a catchphrase from Mindjumpers: “Content might be the King, Queen, Prince and Court Jester, but Context is the Crown.”   Expand Your Audience There are over 7,000 languages spoken around the globe and your monolingual site is only catering for the people who speak that language. Straight off the bat, you’re missing out on literally an entire world of potential customers and sales. Take English, for example: It’s the third most common language on the planet, accounting for roughly 360 million people (about 5.6% of the global population). That might seem like a large target market, but you’re ignoring the 955 million Mandarin speakers and 405 million Spanish speakers who make up the top two most common languages. That’s over 1.3 billion people you’re bypassing through having a monolingual site and that figure only rises if you count the remaining top ten languages. Still not convinced? A post by Chief Marketer stated that your website will have the ability to speak to 80% of all internet users by serving it in just 11 languages. Out of the 7,000+ we spoke of earlier, that’s a pretty worthwhile and very achievable figure. This isn’t an exact science, of course, as a percentage of your visitors might speak other languages or use machine translation services to decipher your content. Even if this is the case, over half of those visitors may be lost as potential conversions. A survey by the Common Sense Advisory showed that 55% of consumers said they would only buy products from websites that provided them with information in their own language. In other words, even if you’re getting high volumes of traffic from around the world, over half of them will not reach the end of the conversion funnel if you don’t serve your content in their native tongue. That’s a lot of missed opportunities by anyone’s standards.   Enhance the Customer Journey As technology develops and becomes faster, the patience of those using it wears thinner. People expect to see what they want instantly and seldom stick around if they can’t find it. You’re asking for trouble if your site has issues like slow loading times, a complicated sitemap or a lack of information in the right places. If your content is relevant, easy to find and is served in the customer’s language then you’ve got a much better chance of making a conversion and offering a positive customer journey. The localization process serves to encourage longer, more frequent visits which will result in an increase in your conversions over the long term. A study by Forrester Research showed that 95% of Chinese online consumers indicated greater comfort levels with websites that were displayed in their own language. As we mentioned earlier, Mandarin is the top spoken language in the world and it would be a poor business decision to pass up on an opportunity to enhance the experience of 955 million potential customers. You can take this a step further by focusing on things like background color, font types, images or anything else that can be tweaked to further localize your site. Machine translations are incapable of coining colloquial phrases or customizing landing page images that your customers can identify with, thus inhibiting the localization process and overall customer journey. Final Word If you’ve read this far, we’re guessing that website localization is a relatively untapped resource in your business arsenal. It’s a topic that requires a certain degree of self-learning, but is an infinitely rewarding move if you can execute it in the right way. If you're hoping to globalize your business, localizing your site is a must. To learn more about how to localize your site, check out our post on the 5 Key Considerations for Successful Website Localization.