Few Executive Respondents Call Translation “High Priority,” But Majority Of
E-Shoppers Surveyed Cite Language As Driver For Purchasing Decisions
NEW YORK, August 15, 2011 - TransPerfect, the world’s largest privately held provider of language services and translation-related technologies, today announced the results of a two-part globalization survey conducted among executives of internationally focused companies and consumers who shop online. The results show a striking gap between the minimal value some brands attribute to quality localization and translation and the importance shoppers place on these elements.
While only 19 percent of executives surveyed called translating information online a high priority, 63 percent of the consumers who participated in the survey said they are more likely to buy from a website available in their native languages. More than 200 executives and shoppers completed the TransPerfect survey. Among them were residents of the United States, France, Germany, Sweden, Japan and numerous other nations.
The companies participating in the survey ranged from fewer than 500 employees to more than 5,000, but the overall majority ranked translation of Web content as a low priority. While few executives labeled localization activities as critical to globalization success, respondents also admitted they did not know how important language was to their conversion rates. A startling 64 percent said they were “unsure” whether translated websites have or would have a significant impact on sales globally.
Among the other findings were:
Seventy-three percent of consumers surveyed said they encounter e-commerce websites that are not available in their native languages.
Sixty-three percent said they would be more likely to buy from websites that were available in their native languages.
More than half said when left to their own devices, they either try to translate material themselves, rely on a browser-based translation application, or terminate their shopping sessions.
Nearly 68 percent said they “always” or “sometimes” encounter website translations that are not correct or are confusing because the translations lacked an understanding of the culture.
“We were surprised by the dichotomy between executive and consumer feedback to the survey,” said Liz Elting, CEO and co-founder of TransPerfect. “Brands seem to think any level of website translation is adequate, but they aren’t measuring the effect of poor localization on sales. Meanwhile, shoppers clearly feel differently. As numerous consumer respondents told us, idioms and cultural awareness are key factors in the quality of an e-commerce website and in their purchasing decisions.”
With revenue of over $250 million, TransPerfect is the largest privately held language services provider in the world. From offices in 66 cities on 5 continents, TransPerfect offers a full range of services in over 100 languages to multinationals worldwide. With a global network of over 4,000 linguists and subject-area specialists, TransPerfect is the largest translation company to be fully ISO 9001:2008 and EN 15038:2006 certified. TransPerfect is headquartered in New York and has regional headquarters in London and Hong Kong. For more information, please visit our website at www.transperfect.com.