When you are thinking about going global, and you’re considering translation for your marketing materials, an interactive tool published by Think with Google provides some insight on whether to prioritize translation for different channels in different markets.   Using millions of online interactions gathered through Google Analytics, Think with Google tracked the journey to online purchase from small, medium, and large businesses across a variety of industries in 8 different countries.  The tool allows you to choose an industry, the relative size of the business, and the buyers’ country. It then provides a visual mapping of which channels tend to play an early role in the path to purchase and which channels are more likely to play a  role in the final decision.

brazil path to purchase

japan path to purchase

For example, according to Think with Google, customers buying from medium-sized businesses in the Brazilian ‘Business and Industrial” sector tend to use social, display advertising, and direct channels at their last interaction before purchase. Organic search and brand or paid search are much more likely to play an early assisting role.  Email marketing does not figure in the path to purchase for the Brazilians.  On the other hand, in Japan, the last interaction on the path to purchase more often takes place either via email marketing or via direct channels.  Social appears as an early assisting interaction for Japanese buyers in this sector, and display advertising does not appear in the typical path to purchase.

While the data is not as granular as you might need, the general idea is very suggestive. Online behavior varies from culture to culture. When Brazilians buy a particular product, they might be consulting different channels with more frequency than Japanese buyers of the same product.  If the path to purchase for a particular product or service varies from one country to the next, you’ll want to make sure the content encountered in the most important channels are available in the right language. For example, according to Google’s current data, localizing your email marketing efforts makes more sense in Japan than in Brazil.  Your social campaign in Japan serves the function of raising awareness, while your social campaign in Brazil may be more focused on boosting interest and sealing the deal.

A reliable and informed Language Services Partner can help in a consultative role in prioritizing translation needs by channel.

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