Going Global: When Your Business is Ready to Cross Borders

Is your company looking into website translation, but you're not sure if it's the right time? Let us help you decide if your business is ready to benefit from a multilingual website strategy.

Dominic Dithurbide's avatar
Dominic Dithurbide

June 28, 2023


In today's interconnected world, it is easier to access and discover new brands through web search and social media. Your company has the opportunity to reach new customers and markets through multilingual and multicultural website translation and localization. When you're considering building an international presence, there are important challenges to consider in order to ensure your success and avoid roadblocks. We want your business to get the most from your translations, so we're highlighting the best times to implement a multilingual international strategy for your website: 

1. When Your Company Has Low Barriers of Entry 

Having "low barriers of entry" in an international business strategy means reducing or minimizing the obstacles and challenges that hinder the entry of new competitors or the expansion of existing businesses into a foreign market. It refers to creating an environment where it is relatively easy for companies to enter and establish themselves in a new market without significant hurdles. 

In the context of international business, low barriers of entry enable companies to quickly and cost-effectively enter new markets, thereby promoting competition, innovation, and market growth. 

Laws and Regulations to Abide By

Every country's laws differ in terms of operating a business. If you're looking into going global, you'll likely want to learn about: 

  • International trade requirements 
  • Tax laws 
  • Intellectual property (IP) laws 
  • Foreign currency exchange controls 
  • Labor laws and employment 

In many areas of the world, there are also language access laws that require businesses to provide content to multilingual consumers in their preferred language. This is especially important for businesses that deal with healthcare, travel and hospitality, and financial services. In fact, when it comes to buyer intention for industries to invest in language services, complying with regulations is the second largest motivation at 18%. If you are dealing with laws and regulations, you should work with a professional translation company like MotionPoint so you can be sure you don't subject yourself to fines, lawsuits, or even jail time. The bottom line is, where there are low barriers of entry, website translation is usually all you need to break into a new market. 

Can Smoothly Implement an International Strategy 

When you're looking into expanding your business' online presence, you'll want to look at the extent to which you'll need to immerse your business in the local market. The ideal situation with the lowest barrier of entry when breaking into a new foreign market is when there is low local responsiveness and low integration, known as an international strategy.  

Local responsiveness refers to how much your company needs to localize its products and services to meet the cultural nuances of a foreign market, whereas global integration is a measure of the local presence required to offer the same products and services in different countries. An international strategy boasts low global integration and low local responsiveness. this is highly valuable for companies that want to focus on their domestic operations but have low-cost pressures to access international opportunities, since they don’t have to alter their products in order to connect with a foreign buyer. 

This is arguably the simplest way to break into a new market, but sometimes a business does need to localize a product to ensure its success in a foreign location. This is referred to as a multi-domestic strategy, which is one that ranks high on local responsiveness but low on global integration. This just means a business has to meet the demands of markets through localization. In this case, each country or market receives a customized version of a product. Not having to provide a physical presence in the target country or region means there are fewer barriers of entry into a new market. 

If a marketer were to implement a successful international strategy, they would ideally be following this step-by-step checklist: 

  • Research and analyze target markets: 
    • Identify potential target markets based on market size, growth potential, competition, and cultural fit. 
    • Conduct thorough market research to understand consumer behavior, preferences, and purchasing power. 
    • Analyze market trends, economic indicators, and political factors that may impact your business. 
  • Adapt and localize your marketing message: 
    • Tailor your marketing message and communication style to resonate with the local audience. 
    • Translate and localize content to ensure cultural sensitivity and relevance. 
    • Consider linguistic, cultural, and social nuances while crafting marketing campaigns. 
  • Develop a comprehensive marketing plan: 
    • Create a detailed marketing plan that outlines the strategies, tactics, and channels to reach your target audience. 
    • Consider traditional and digital marketing channels, including advertising, PR, social media, influencer marketing, and content marketing. 
    • Allocate resources and budgets based on the potential ROI and market dynamics. 
  • Website translation and localization: 
    • Determine the need for translating your website into the local language(s) of your target market. 
    • Identify the pages or sections of your website that require translation, such as product descriptions, service offerings, about us, and contact information. 
    • Work with professional translators or localization agencies to ensure accurate translation and cultural adaptation. 
    • Localize website elements, including currency, measurements, date formats, and images to align with the local market.
    • Test and verify the functionality of the translated website, ensuring a seamless user experience for visitors from different countries. 
  • Continuously monitor and evaluate performance: 
    • Set up key performance indicators (KPIs) to track the effectiveness of your international marketing efforts. 
    • Regularly review and analyze market data, sales figures, customer feedback, and competitor activities. 
    • Make necessary adjustments and improvements based on the insights gained from monitoring and evaluation. 

2. When There is Demand for You to be There 

When entering a new global market, you have to look at two things: the current competitive landscape and the cost of entry. The potential of new markets drives companies to innovate, improve their offerings, and provide better value to customers. You don't actually have to be 100% sure that there will be demand in a new market, but it's important to have some data that justifies testing. 

A competitive market ensures that businesses continually strive to deliver high-quality products and services at competitive prices. If you're going to be the first to enter a market, there is potential to dominate it, but there's also a chance no one is there because there is no demand. In many ways, the presence of competition is good, and a good sign you should be joining them. 

Often, joining an existing market can also help reduce cost of entry. Reduced entry costs, such as lower regulatory fees and compliance expenses, enable companies to allocate resources more effectively, invest in market research, product development, and marketing, and ultimately enhance their competitive advantage. You’ll be able to rely on manufacturers, logistic services, and distributors that already operate in the area. 

It's also very important to test secondary markets. You may have found that translating your website for one language was successful, and now you're considering expanding even further. For example, if you're already doing Spanish for the U.S. market, why not test Spanish for Mexico or French Canadian to see if there is demand? It can depend on where you're seeing demand for your products or services, but often testing a second, similar market will pay off for your business. 

3. You Understand the Target Market and Culture 

While translation is just one aspect of creating a multilingual strategy, it's imperative to also understand the nuances of the culture and the language. If your company needs more local integration and global responsiveness, such as in a transnational or multi-domestic strategy, you are going to have to focus more heavily on how you present yourself in a new market. The same language can have different dialects and different meanings attached to the same words. Similarly, each local economy has different price point preferences, and knowing about this allows you leverage to compete with other businesses. 

This can be a lot for a marketing team or individual linguists to learn for each new market. Luckily, working with a concierge-level translation partner means you not only get seamless, hands-off translation services, but you also have access to expert linguists who are experts in the target culture. When your business is looking to go global for the first time, or just hoping to break into a new market, it's imperative that you work with a language service provider that also knows about marketing and international strategy. Bottom line, you actually don't need to understand your target market because MotionPoint will take care of that for you! 

Prioritize Website Translation 

When it comes to launching an international marketing strategy with low barriers of entry, website translation is an easy first step. If your business has few resources to get this done, but needs high-quality output, MotionPoint is the right option. With a spectrum of different website translation technology options, chances are we have what's right for your company. No matter what you choose, we can help your company thrive in a new multilingual market. 

For a limited time, if you sign on to translate into one language, we will give you another for free to test your position in an additional new market! Reach out to us today!

Last updated on June 28, 2023
Dominic Dithurbide's avatar

About Dominic Dithurbide

Dominic Dithurbide is a creative, goal-driven marketing leader that's dedicated his career to the translation industry. Dominic brings proficiency in global marketing, demand generation, and go-to-market strategies to MotionPoint's marketing team.

Dominic Dithurbide's avatar
Dominic Dithurbide

Marketing Manager


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