At Agency Fusion we’ve been thinking and talking a lot lately about creating multi-lingual websites. I think you’d agree the world is quickly getting smaller as communication and e-commerce technologies make it possible for even tiny companies to have customers scattered across the globe.
In recent years companies have learned that a well-designed and well-written website is a fantastic tool for customer support, sales, etc. Most websites provide this value, however, using English-only content.
What language(s) do you your clients’ clients speak?
In 2002 the U.S. Census Bureau reported that Hispanics are the largest U.S. minority at 13.4% of the population. That’s almost 40 million people. Experts predict the percentage to grow to over 20% within the next 15 years.
Hispanic Internet users reportedly use the Internet 13.8 hrs/week at work and another 9.5 hrs/week at home which is more than the general population, according to a study by AOL/Roper. 40% of those surveyed said Spanish is their primary, dominant language.
While many of your clients may be fine with an English-only website, I think it’s worth considering which of your clients may have a product or service that could tap into another market by adding a second or third language to the website.
The trend toward globalization is on an upward trend so the sooner you and your clients create a strategy, the less likely it is you’ll get left in the dust.