The Internet is global, with billions of users around the world. If you sell products or services to different groups of people in different countries, you should be investing time and effort in international marketing.
As a marketer or a business owner, when you’re considering how to adapt your website to a new language, you should consider these three options: translation, localization, and transcreation.
These three services act as strategies for making your content accessible in a language other than the language it was created in. Each involves different processes and levels of involvement, but the outcomes are entirely different.
In this article, we’ll go over the basics of multilingual keyword research, transcreation, the importance of hiring a translator, the impact on SEO, and the significance of multilingual keyword research when reaching the Hispanic Market.
What is Multilingual Keyword Research?
SEO is all about helping people find your website online. If you have a successful business in one language and want to branch out into a new target market, you’ll need to identify keywords that people in the market would use in the search engines. That’s the essence of Multilingual Keyword Research.
The most important step in your international marketing efforts is to find a new target language with the most potential. When reviewing your audience demographics and location, you’ll be able to decide which languages would be worth investing your international marketing efforts in.
After you figure out what languages you are going to translate your content into, you can then decide which content you’re going to translate. You don’t have to create entirely new content. You can start by taking your best content and translating it to your new target market’s language.
Why You Should Be Investing in Multilingual Keyword Research
As a marketer or business owner, you know how important keywords have become in today’s digital world. But when it comes to keyword research in new markets, you need to do more than simply translating the same keywords that worked in English into your new target language.
Content translation is not always accurate in regards to context or keyword research. The reason for this is because direct translations don’t always translate to successful keyword research. Just because a certain keyword worked in English doesn’t mean it will work as well when translated into your new language.
This is because Google search was developed to show results that will satisfy a searcher’s intent. If you simply translate an English keyword verbatim into your new target language, there’s a good chance you won’t rank for it because direct translations don’t always correspond to the same keywords your new market would use when searching Google.
What is Transcreation?
Transcreation is more than a literal translation. Transcreated content uses locally appropriate references and language to convey your brand’s messaging.
For example, say you have a very successful piece of content in English and you want to transcreate it into Spanish. All of the things that made it successful in English may not translate or apply to your new market.
Your English content might have references to things that only people who speak English would understand, like quotes from English movies or urban slang. These references wouldn’t resonate as well in Spanish because of cultural relevance and context.
That’s why localization and transcreation are crucial to your international marketing efforts because it’s important to communicate with users in a way they can understand.
These nuances in language, culture, and consumer behavior make it imperative to have content that’s specifically created for your new target language. An expert transcreator will be able to recreate your best content into a new language while still maintaining the effectiveness and integrity of the original.
Why You Need to Hire an Expert Translator (Instead of Using Machine Translation)
Sure, you can easily translate an entire page with Google Translate, but the truth is, Google Translate is far from perfect.
When you translate content verbatim, you lose out on certain aspects of the content that can only be salvaged by an expert translator.
With an expert translator, you’re able to reword, localize, or transcreate your content to another language using a local dialect and create content that really resonates with the audience.
If you intend on localizing any of your content, you need to prioritize quality translations over anything. Not only that, but you want to make sure that your translator can match the tone, voice, and image of your brand.
You also want to make sure that whoever does your multilingual keyword research is not only able to translate your content, but can also analyze potential keywords and identify new opportunities to reach your new market. Another thing to take into consideration is the fact that even people who live in the same country and speak the same language can search for the same thing in different ways.
Even within the Latinx community, we are all very diverse. We all come from different countries, cultures, and backgrounds, and we all Google things in our own way. Each of us can search online for the same thing but use very different words to do so.
These differences mean you should have relevant content available to each of these potential markets. That’s something Google Translate can’t do for you.
Multilingual keyword research considers all these things and helps your content reach and resonate with more people.
What About Multilingual SEO? Will Multilingual Keyword Research and Transcreation Help?
Think of it this way: Say you have one piece of content that’s generating tons of traffic for your website. You identify a new language opportunity, and you hire a translator to transcreate the content into the new language. By translating this page into the new language, you increase the number of people who view the content. The more people who engage and interact with the content, the more relevant it becomes to Google. The more interaction and the more relevant your content is, the higher it will rank in Google search.
SEO is about optimizing your web presence on search engines. So if your webpage is constantly being clicked on and people are staying and interacting on the page, the more likely you are to show up first in the search results.
The higher you rank on the search engine results page, the more people are likely to check out your website. This acts like a snowball rolling down the mountain. As you start building momentum, you get bigger and bigger. You increase brand awareness by having more people view your website as you simultaneously increase your SEO efforts. A win-win!
Why the Hispanic Market Is So Important
According to Statista, the buying power of the Hispanic market is expected to increase to as much as 1.7 trillion US dollars. That means there’s a lot of money up for grabs. If you’re looking to get a piece of it, you need to be creating content for this niche.
Another interesting statistic comes from Google Data. It claims that the number of Spanish keyword searches increased from about 65% to 200% across key categories such as auto, food, and beauty. This increase in keyword searches means that Hispanics in this market are using Google to help solve problems in these competitive industries. So if your goal is to show up early in their Customer Journey, you need to create content around those keywords.
The truth is, great bilingual content entails a deep understanding of your Hispanic audience. Great bilingual content takes into consideration their age, their interests, their language, their location, and their levels of acculturation.
Let me give you an example: Let’s say you sell popcorn and want to reach the Hispanic market. In Latin America, there are 17 different words you can use for popcorn. How do you know which word to use? It’s challenging, but that’s why you need to hire a translator with enough expertise to make that decision for you. To learn more about the popcorn example and how transcreation can solve that problem, click here.
To take advantage of this huge opportunity among international and multilingual markets, you should be following best practices to ensure you’re not wasting your time and effort.
Before you begin your international marketing efforts, you need a good strategy in place. Moz, the major keyword research tool provider, says it best when it comes to deciding whether you need to create content for other languages. They encourage you to first resort to your analytics software before asking yourself:
“Does the potential traffic conversions coming from additional countries and languages warrant developing a new web presence?”
In other words, are you getting enough traffic and conversions from people who speak these other languages to justify translating your content?
Because the reality is if you’re not increasing KPIs, brand awareness, or engagement, then maybe content translation shouldn’t be a part of your strategy.