How Translation Can Turn 4% of Traffic Into $2,786,002

How Translation Can Turn 4% of Traffic Into $2,786,002

Header_How Translation Can Turn 4 Percent.pngPerhaps the most exciting application of website translation is as a means to market penetration. By leveraging localized content, savvy companies can address entirely new audiences and build powerful regional advantages.

But as growing brands send scouts searching for opportunities abroad, they would also be wise to reexamine their existing audience. In fact, some of the most lucrative ventures are launched by companies simply catering to the international visitors they already have. 

Introducing Eric’s eCommerce Emporium

Meet Eric. Eric is the owner of a completely fictitious company observing a thoroughly relatable trend: Over the last six months, the proportion of Spanish-speaking web users visiting Eric’s eCommerce Emporium (EEE) has grown from 1% to 4% of his total website traffic.

Eric was somewhat surprised, at first, considering his company is headquartered in the United States and only publishes web pages in English. Then again, he did anecdotally remember a recent uptick in shipments sent to customers in Puerto Rico. And as his marketing director reminded him, 12% of U.S. citizens now speak Spanish at home.

Regardless of how this Spanish-speaking audience arrives at the EEE website, their conversion rates are the real concern. Whereas the site’s English-speaking segment converts at a rate of 5%, only 1% of Spanish-speaking visitors currently make a purchase prior to exit.

Table 1. EEE Website Traffic – Baseline

EEE Website Traffic - Baseline

Translating website content into Spanish would surely lift those lagging conversion rates. After all, 72% of consumers are more likely to buy a product if it has information listed in their native language. But before authorizing any localization investment, Eric needs to know what concrete business results he can reasonably expect.

How Much Could Conversion Help?

Whether you publish in English, Spanish, or Cantonese, content marketing is not designed to deliver instant rewards. It takes time to develop authority in the eyes of consumers and search engines alike.

With that said, let’s conservatively estimate that it will take 18 months for EEE’s Spanish-speaker conversion rate to catch up to its English counterpart.

Table 2. Impact of Improved Conversion Rate

Impact of Improved Conversion Rate

*Model assumes baseline status quo would have generated $200,000 in sales every 6 months. Incremental Sales figures reflect difference between this $200,000 base and the Spanish-Speaking Audience Sales for the period in question.

Assuming all business factors aside from conversion rates remain unchanged, this scenario suggests Eric could win an additional $1,600,000 in incremental sales over 18 months by translating his website into Spanish.

Okay, It’s Not That Simple

Business factors will not remain unchanged, of course. An additional 18 months in the marketplace will inevitably move all sorts of metrics other than website conversion rates.

At the risk of being slightly optimistic, let’s assume that under Eric’s astute leadership, EEE will enjoy modest business growth and expand its total audience by 5% every six months as well.

Table 3. EEE Website Traffic – Growth

EEE Website Traffic - Growth

*Model assumes EEE website traffic will grow 5% every six months, from an annualized baseline of 20 million visitors.

What might the impact of Spanish website translation look like under those circumstances?

Table 4. Combined Impact of Conversion & Traffic Growth

Combined Impact of Conversion & Traffic Growth

*Model assumes baseline status quo would have generated $200,000 in sales every 6 months. Incremental Sales figures reflect difference between this $200,000 base and the Spanish-Speaking Audience Sales for the period in question.

Accounting for these new website traffic patterns, this revised scenario suggests Eric could win an additional $1,856,160 in incremental sales over 18 months by translating EEE’s website into Spanish.

One Last Ripple Effect

As Eric’s team demonstrates a consistent commitment to publishing content localized for a Spanish-speaking audience, there’s a strong chance that unique visitors from Latin America and Western Europe will start finding their way to the EEE website as well. That means the Spanish-speaking audience segment could soon represent a larger piece of EEE’s website traffic pie.

Table 5. EEE Website Traffic – Global Growth

EEE Website Traffic - Global Growth

*Model assumes Spanish-speaking audience segment will grow from 4% to 6% of total traffic over 18 months.

For our last scenario then, let’s take all the previously mentioned variables into consideration and assume:

  • Spanish-speaking audience conversion rate will grow from 1% to 5%
  • Total website traffic will grow by 5% every 6 months
  • Spanish-speaking audience will grow from 4% to 6% of total website traffic

Table 6. Combined Impact of Conversion, Traffic & Segment Growth

Combined Impact of Conversion, Traffic & Segment Growth

*Model assumes baseline status quo would have generated $200,000 in sales every 6 months. Incremental Sales figures reflect difference between this $200,000 base and the Spanish-Speaking Audience Sales for the period in question.

With those three growth signals working in Eric’s favor, our final scenario suggests Eric could win an additional $2,786,002 in incremental sales over 18 months by translating the website into Spanish.

From Data To Decisions

By combining a single audience insight with some back-of-the-envelope arithmetic, we’ve already given Eric a practical portrait to reference when weighing website translation decisions.

Sales Potential of EEE Spanish Translation

Future conversations regarding translation resources, SEO implications, and enabling technologies can all add depth to this portrait in time, but these initial calculations are valuable in their own right. They serve as an important reminder that translation can be both a data-driven practice and revenue-generating pursuit.

Learn More

If you’re curious about what kind of impact translation could create for your organization, contact us today. We’ll be happy to run more sophisticated calculations personalized to your unique business traits and goals.

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