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Chinese web localisation could transform your business.

Chinese e-commerce grew by 66% in 2011, representing a turnover of 93 billion euros.

With more than 513 million Internet users and 356 million mobile Internet users, according to the 29th Statistical Report on Internet Development in China by the China Internet Network Information Center, China is the world’s largest online market, and this population is continuing to grow.

With rapid improvements in the technological infrastructure there, use of the Internet is continuously evolving and becoming more sophisticated. Combine this with China’s growing middle class who have more buying power than ever before, and you can see why online shopping has become so huge there so quickly. A 2011 study of online buyers worldwide conducted by PricewaterhouseCoopers found that 86% of China’s nearly 200 million online shoppers considered themselves experts at ecommerce, compared to 70% in the UK and 72% in the USA.

With an average of 8.4 online purchases per month by online buyers, China makes developed Western Internet economies look like ecommerce newcomers. For comparison, online buyers in the US made an average of 5.2 purchases and 4.3 in the UK, while in France and Netherlands just 2.6. In Germany, Europe’s largest and strongest economy, this figure was 2.9 purchases. Who are you considering selling online to at the moment? Germany? France? Or maybe China?

Only 42 million people in China (8.2% of Internet users) used travel booking services in the last year. However, the Chinese travel market is predictably seeing fast-paced growth in the coming years so online travel booking businesses are expected to experience higher growth there. South African Airways Simplified Chinese website for mainland China is an example of a full Chinese site translated by Web-Translations.

China’s scale, combined with its online population’s embrace of online shopping, present an important opportunity for businesses wanting to “go international”. However, setting up a business and subsequently succeeding in this country where almost everything is different can prove challenging. Consumer tastes, strict regulations, government involvement, Internet censorship, cultural differences and bureaucratic processes are some of the issues companies need to examine when entering China’s online market, yet the potential seems to outweigh the obstacles bearing in mind the current economic situation we find ourselves in in the West.

Recently we have completed International Blasts for China for some of our clients who aren’t afraid to begin facing this challenge: Brandy Classics and Click Meeting by Implix. This service is a great first step for companies interested in China by setting up a microsite and optimising it so you can begin to see the traffic to your site and interest in your product over there.

To find out how to launch a Chinese version of your website to start selling to China, please contact Web-Translations: sales[at]web-translations.co.uk / +44 (0) 113 815 0460.

First Time Exporters: Full Support for your Website Translation

As the liberalisation of global commerce continues, more and more companies are joining the international market every year. Exporting has traditionally been seen as one of the most risky, and expensive ways to grow a business.  While there are many pitfalls and challenges when trading internationally, the Internet offers an excellent way for you to reach out and grow your market share, without investing millions.

Global trade has never been so easy with the First time Exporters Guide. By working with Web-Translations you will have a partner to help you at every stage in your journey.  We combine years of experience, with top-quality language and web skills to offer a hand-held, strategic approach to boosting your global trade.

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ZSL London Zoo is Olympic ready and diving from new heights

The 2012 London Olympics represents a great sales opportunity. Visitors from all over the world will be visiting UK this year, some businesses are seizing this opportunity to maximise their slice of the action.

The Olympic Gold Website Package was launched this month by Web-Translations to Get Businesses Fit for London 2012.

By giving customers extra peace of mind when offering translated information, you’ll win their trust, and ultimately their custom.

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Olympic Gold Website Package – Fit for London 2012

Get Fit for London 2012 with the recently launched Olympic Gold Website Package by Web-Translations.

The 2012 London Olympics represents a great sales opportunity. As mentioned in the Getting Fit for the Olympics blog post published last week not everyone is capitalising on this sales opportunity. Do you want to go for Gold in the 2012 London Olympics?

Last year the largest ever campaign by a national tourist board was launched by VisitBritain; the £100 million GREAT Britain You’re Invited campaign. Primarily fronted by five major global celebrities who agreed to film TV ads and help promote Britain overseas.

As VisitBritain’s Mark Di-Toro says, “Now is the time to wave the British flag”. Thanks to the GREAT campaign a global audience of billions will have their eyes firmly set on Britain like never before. Will you be profiting from this interest?

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Rapid growth in Turkish eCommerce

Taking a bite from the Turkish delight will reap sweet rewards for online retailers

Turkish e-commerce transactions reached an impressive $12.3 billion in 2011, representing an increase of 57% on the previous year according to the Interbank Card Center. Combine this upsurge with the 12% per year e-commerce growth Forrester Research Inc (FORR) predicts for European growth over the next 5 years, and it becomes obvious that it’s time to pay attention to Turkey.

Impressive statistics, but what’s going on?

Half the population of Turkey is under 30 years old. This young society has been quick to adopt technological innovations and they now spend more time online per week than the worldwide average. This tendency translates into a high responsiveness to social media – 89% of Turkish Internet users are on Facebook and they are the 11th most active country on Twitter.

95% of the Turkish population are expected to have a mobile phone in 2013, with global corporations such as Telecom Italia having already entered Turkey to take advantage of this.

Furthermore Turkey has a credit driven economy, with a 62% credit card penetration among consumers. All of this has led to a positive environment for the development of Turkish e-commerce.

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3-Steps to a successful multilingual website

We’re combining our 3 lead web services to help your website launch in international markets with a bang.

All good things come in threes – that’s certainly true when it comes to launching your website in a new language and country. Follow these 3 key steps to start seeing results from your website:

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Tips for international ecommerce success this Christmas

Yes, it’s a bit early to mention Christmas, I know, but savvy online retailers are already in the midst of preparing for the festive period.

Success stories such as Amazon and ASOS have shown that international sales can have a huge impact on an ecommerce business, so it’s hardly surprising that more retailers are jumping on this bandwagon and localising their websites to open up shop to international customers.

Before jumping in with both feet, however, there are a few things you can do to ensure your international online sales go smoothly ahead of the festive season: (more…)

Benefits of Bilingualism

Recent research conducted by Dr. Athanasopoulus, of Newcastle University has revealed that bilingual speakers, or those who have studied a foreign language to some extent, see the world differently to monoglots.  According to Dr Athanasopoulus, immersion in a foreign culture, including the use of another language, leads people to think in a completely different way: “There’s an inextricable link between language, culture and cognition”.

One example he provided, after conducting a study involving English and Japanese speakers, is that Japanese speakers tend to distinguish more between “light blue” and “dark blue” as there are two single Japanese words to describe these variations. He took into account the extent to which both languages are used, as well as the length of time spent in the countries in question, and used colours as an example due to the huge range of vocabulary that can be used in descriptions. He concluded that it is the extent to which a language is used, rather than the user’s proficiency that is most influential.

It was also discovered, by a study conducted in 2009 for a journal of the Association for Psychological Science, that speaking two languages improves a person’s ability to ignore distractions, and also to switch between two tasks.  This has been linked to the necessity of blocking out one language when speaking in the other.  There have also been supported suggestions that bilingualism can help reduce the risk of developing Alzheimer’s.

The importance of bilingualism in terms of business has been highlighted in various articles in journals and newspapers.  Immersion in another culture, as well as enhancing the distinction between various shades of colours, helps a person understand another culture, another language, and another way of life.  This can be of immeasurable significance in the business world, when working on an international scale. Relations between two companies from different countries are likely to be stronger if both parties have an understanding of the way in which the other conducts business.

As if you needed any more encouragement, as The Daily Telegraph comments, “we are all designed to acquire language, but we are built to learn and accommodate more than just one: monolinguals are effectively under utilizing abilities by not tapping that potential.”

Internet changes likely to impact international Web businesses

A recent article in New Scientist reports on the imminent release of Internet Corporation for Assigned Names and Numbers (ICANN) from U.S. national control. ICANN is responsible for maintaining the various technical standards that make the Internet possible on a low level.

Under an Affirmation agreement with the U.S. department of commerce ICANN will not be coordinated by any specific government, allowing representatives from many countries to take part. The likely offshoot is that Internet standards will become more inclusive of Internet users outside America. For instance, the article reports that we might reasonably expect domain names to be available in Chinese and Arabic characters in little more than a year. They also report that current browsers cannot access domain names written in these scripts, which is quite right, but a reasonably small change I cannot see any major browser manufacturer delaying in releasing to their customers.

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