Have you ever heard of the acronym GILT? If you acknowledge the relevance of living in a constantly connected world and you want your company to move easily through it, as a fish in water, keep reading because this article is for you!
Globalisation, Internationalisation, Localisation and Translation
GILT (Globalisation, Internationalisation, Localisation and Translation) includes the activities that take place in a company when it aims at expanding internationally. Many companies focus on the globalisation process, expanding their horizons and entering international markets.
Oreo and its Asian market adaptation
Only a few companies resort to internationalisation, meaning that they design their products differently according to the market they are aiming at. For example, Oreo‘s famous biscuits were replaced in the Asian market by a different range of food products, very different from the original ones, for greater success (less sweet, cheaper, elongated and highly publicised),
However, this process requires a considerable investment and, on many occasions, is almost impossible to achieve. For this reason, many companies opt for a more attractive and much more consistent solution for their products and services: the localisation of their website.
Make no mistake: choose web localisation
As we explained in our previous blog posts, localisation is the adaptation of a company’s products or services to different markets. Localisation and translation professionals, chosen by the company, will perform the tasks of communication agent, interpreter and cultural mediator. The translation-localisation expert not only knows the language, but also the culture and the market specifications the company is aiming at, so he will adapt the website to different markets. In this way, it will reach potential customers directly, as long as transcreation and international SEO activities are performed through the famous keywords.
Agreeing with María C. Estrada, companies need ever more international profiles, as they may encounter idiosyncrasies that differ from their own when interacting and negotiating with other companies and customers. Therefore, if the company wants to expand its boundaries, it must rely on the help of professionals who can provide a better chance of success in potential markets.
Now that you are more than convinced that localisation is what your website needs, doubts may arise:
- Would I jeopardise my non-disclosure agreements?
- Do I trust the localisation professionals enough to entrust them with this task?
- Will I be satisfied with the work done?
Beware of the shortest path! The limits of automatic website translation
Having these doubts at the beginning is common, but it is important not to despair and to make the right decision. But what about those who, overwhelmed by these doubts, decide to take the shortest and easiest route? A road that seems to be rosy, but once entered is muddy and full of obstacles. Care must be taken here, as the well-known machine translation tools come into play.
These tools, as the name suggests, generate an automatic translation, or more precisely, perform a conversion from one language to another automatically, without the intervention of a professional. They do not take into account the context or the target culture they are addressing, nor will they perform international SEO or carry out customised transcreation. All these problems can result in major or minor misunderstandings, and also the failure to receive the main message of the enterprise. The website will not position itself correctly and its services will not reach potential customers.
These tools, like Microsoft Translator, immediately warn us of their limitations: «Machine translation may not currently be a substitute for a professional human translator». That is, they create translations that are acceptable, but far from being able to replace those of a professional translator.
Credibility is one of the most important aspects when relying on a website
Now that you are ware of the risks brought by a poor translation and a bad localisation of a website, what will you choose? Our professional advice is that not always the shortest and easiest way is the better one. Credibility is one of the most important aspects when relying on a website. Customers look for credibility when they decide to buy a product or service online. If your website has spelling mistakes, incomprehensible sentences, and poor translations, you will lose potential customers, as they will not rely on it or the services it offers.
To sum up, there are many paths to take when you want to expand your business internationally, and if you have always wanted the best for your business, why not now? Always rely on the advice and work of translation and localisation professionals. It is well known: better safe than sorry!