We live in an interconnected world, and localization is the key to unlocking business growth and scalability in the global economy. By utilizing the power of localization, many companies are reaching a wider audience.
When you adapt your content to meet your target audiences’ regional, linguistic, and cultural needs, you take a step towards establishing a strong connection with your customers, resulting in increased market growth.
Localization has gained traction in the past few years due to the rapid adoption of AI. However, many businesses are still struggling to grasp its full potential.
Businesses are no longer focused on how much money they will save by localization. They are concerned about how much revenue they will lose if they fail to adapt to their target markets. CSA Research
This guide will discuss the investment returns you must be familiar with when localizing your offerings. Besides, we will also share details about how to calculate the return on investment (ROI) and optimize your brand’s localization strategy for maximum benefit. So, let’s get started!
What Is Localization ROI?
It is a measure of profit derived from localizing a service or product into one language to your targeted market’s local language.
Calculating localization ROI involves weighing the non-financial and financial benefits against the incurred cost throughout the localization process.
Localization is NOT a revenue driver - but a revenue ENABLER. Nimdzi
Formula for Calculating Localization ROI
It can be calculated by dividing the profits derived from localizing a product/service by the project cost. Thus, the formula looks like the following:
Localization ROI = Net Return on Localization/Cost of Localization X 100
For instance, a localization project of launching a ride-sharing app from one locale to another costs $2,000 and brings in a profit of $3,500, then using the formula, localization ROI will be 175%.
A positive ROI percentage means that the localization efforts were profitable. Contrarily, when the ROI calculation yields a negative percentage, it means that localization efforts failed to produce the desired outcome.
Why Is Localization Important?
It’s no secret that the majority of your potential audience or market worldwide may not be fluent in your language, including English, which has been losing its hold as the dominant internet language, hovering around the 26% mark.
Moreover, a comprehensive study conducted by CSA Research indicates that people across the globe tend to make purchasing decisions in their native language.
- 40% of potential customers are unlikely to purchase if the website is unavailable in their native language.
- 73% of people prefer to read product reviews in their mother tongue, indicating the importance of localized content.
- 65% of people prefer to consume content in their native language, highlighting the need for businesses to provide localized content for their target audience.
The statistics indicate that localization is not just an option but a mandatory requirement. However, when it comes to ROI, you may be compelled to prioritize certain aspects of your localization program.
It is reasonable to focus on larger and more profitable markets for your product/service or website/app first. Your business must adopt a well-planned and effective localization strategy to ensure that your efforts result in success and meet your ROI objectives.
Hidden Localization ROI Parameters You Can Leverage
Businesses prioritizing content localization grow strategically and gain a competitive edge. Forward-thinking companies understand that investing in localization not only enhances the customer experience and opens up new markets but also improves employee experience.
Besides, it leads to operational efficiency, enabling them to achieve their strategic objectives. Here, we are going to explore all the areas your business can benefit from by investing in a localization strategy.
Enhanced Customer Engagement
You create a more captivating and relatable offering by tailoring your product/service to your target audience’s language and cultural preferences.
Localized content adds a personal touch to the user experience, enticing visitors to delve deeper into your offerings and ultimately convert into loyal customers. As engagement rates surge, you’ll witness a direct impact on your ROI through increased conversion rates.
9 out of 10 consumers said they 'always' visit a website in their language when given a choice. Harvard Business Review
Expand Your Customer Base
Besides, an effective localization strategy will help you reach a global audience by adapting to relevant cultural nuances and languages to resonate with your target customers. This results in a significant surge in customer base, leading to a higher ROI.
While expanding to new markets, businesses should follow through with content localization and search engine optimization (SEO) to ensure relevance. Gartner
Increased Brand Loyalty and Customer Satisfaction
Customizing your content to the local audience can help establish a strong emotional bond with your potential customers. When people feel like a brand understands them and their culture on a deeper level, they are more likely to choose them over other options.
Studies have found that almost 90% of buying decisions are influenced by emotions rather than rational thinking. Inc.
This emotional connection can boost customer engagement, increase conversions, and ultimately drive up your ROI.
Reduced Customer Support Cost
Localization also helps companies reduce customer service calls and save time and money by providing instruction manuals, training materials, and a Help/FAQ section in the customer’s native language.
It makes it easier for customers to resolve any issues they may encounter while using the products/services. By doing so, companies can provide excellent customer service while reducing costs.
According to research, poor customer experiences cost companies up to $62 billion annually. Forbes
First Movers Advantage and Global Presence
To stand out from the crowd in the worldwide market, it’s imperative to be ahead of your competitors. With many of your rivals still having English-only websites, you can get a leg up by investing in website localization and being among the pioneers to connect with local audiences.
This initial advantage can lead to a surge in market share and profitability, giving you a competitive edge.
56% of consumers surveyed said that the ability to obtain information in their native language is more important than price. Harvard Business Review
According to research conducted by Smart Insights, every $1 investment in localization yields $25 in profit. Yes, this figure depends on several factors, such as the type of product/service, quality, pricing, marketing efforts, and the financial landscape of the target market.
The long-term benefits of localization can be explained using the ‘three P’ approach:
Localization helps brands present their products/services and company values in a way that their target market will fully comprehend. This minimizes the risk of bad publicity by building a POSITIVE global presence.
By investing in professional localization services, you pave the road to building a strong connection with your target audience. Besides, it brings your brand voice closer to your target audience by adapting to their native language and cultural nuances, making your customers TRUST you.
Localization reflects respect for your target audience’s culture and language, leading to seamless communication and quick ADOPTION of your products/services.
How to Maximize Localization ROI
Now that you have figured out the hidden ROI behind localization and how to calculate it, you must be wondering “how can you maximize the localization returns?”.
Worry not because this section will give you an overview of the best practices to boost your localization ROI:
- Go for target markets with the highest demand for your products or services.
- Prioritize content translation as it is the first step in any localization process.
- Make sure to overcome technical roadblocks, such as internationalization before working on your localization strategy.
- Apply local SEO best practices for better reach and ranking in your target market’s Google SERP.
- Provide all the required tools to your team to ensure they work collaboratively throughout the localization process for better results.
- Invest in the necessary tools, such as Translation Memory (TM), to boost ROI while reducing the cost and time spent on the translation/localization process.
In this guide we walked you through the localization ROI, i.e., the unrealized benefits businesses can avail of by converting their products/services, websites/apps, and even entire marketing campaigns from one language to another.
To some, it may seem like an added cost, but it is an investment that will allow you to reap profit for many years to come. Thus, we recommend you start working on your localization strategy if you are not already working on it.
Besides, if you are unsure how to do it on your own, Lime Green Media offers media localization services to help you scale to new markets with ease.