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Five Ways to Use Translation to Increase Web Traffic

2017-04-17 00:00


The first reaction to the kind ofnumbers in the Harvard study might be a sense of panic, followed byan attempt to translate your entire website into the languages ofevery market you serve. Resist that urge. Instead, start bytranslating the core elements of your site or online store into one language.

Then, do some research and analyzevisitor behavior on these new pages over the following 60 days. Thiswill give you asolid model for whether or not you have adequately addressed the needs of your target audience. It will also give Google a chance to recrawl /reindex your site and allow you to get a sense of the comparative ranking strength of the new pages versus the old ones.

Not sure which pages to start with?Scan your Analytics account and look at the “Behavior Flow” report under the Behavior tab in your account. It will show you the routes that users most often take through your site and give you agreater sense of which pages are most important.


Changing your prices throughout your site to show the cost in the currency of the customer can make abig difference.

Ideally, you would do this programmatically via adrop-down menu that allows users to choose their currency of choice.This eliminates a ton of work for the consumer and makes the online checkout process faster and easier.

Alternatively, you can use aprogram that automatically recognizes a visitor’s IP address tochange the language and pricing throughout the site so that visitorsknow and understand the cost when they first see your products. Thismakes them more likely to want to buy and more likely to complete thepurchase process.


Live chat is a huge boon to onlineretailers. That said, if you use a live chat program on your site,you will need to be sure that you have language competent chatoperators available or that you have chat disabled in areas that aremore likely to have a low percentage of English speakers.

Or… you can use the strategy wehave recommended to clients: Enable chat across all of your trafficand change the welcome window based on IP address or a user’slanguage choices. Then offer up the option for users to proceed withchat in English or to read an FAQ file in their native language. Thismaximizes both choice and localization.


Google is moving ever more towardsrecognizing and rewarding quality content. Approach your new marketin the same way you approached your current market. Content marketingin the form of blogs, reports, free tools and white papers is a greatway to increase organic traffic and that doesn’t change overseas.

You can start by translating andlocalizing your most popular English language features and, once youhave established traction, move to creating market specific pieces.


This tactic meshes with yourblogging and content marketing approach. Localizing your social mediaaccounts to the new market you are entering increases both customerinteraction with your brand as well as driving online traffic to yoursite. Ideally you want to create new accounts for your new market.But if you don’t have the time or manpower for that, you haveanother option at least for Facebook.

If you lack separate localizedFacebook accounts, you can use the Facebook PowerEditor tool instead.With this tool, you can designate the specific language and locationin which you want the post to appear. Whatever you post will only beavailable to users in that specific language and location. So you arebasically localizing your Facebook without even needing to create anew account.

Committing to a full-blown translation and localization of your business can seem like a lot. But if you start with these smaller steps to drive traffic to yoursite, you can test the waters in a new market and reap the benefits.

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