Translation Essentials for E-commerce Success

In many markets translation and localization is a must for e-commerce success. Get best practice tips from some of the best translation agencies in the business.

15 Jan 2019


Translations are a significant part of any product information management (PIM) deployment. If you sell globally, speaking to consumers in their own language is essential for certain geographies and marketplaces. Translations also improve customer experience and facilitate a seamless purchase process when product information is translated expertly.

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inRiver works with leading translation agencies to ensure customers have access to best-in-class services. What are the biggest differences between translation agencies? How do you select the right one to support your business objectives?

Take a look at the answers to some of the questions we asked our partners from LanguageWireTranslations.comSemantix and Lionbridge. Each agency offers amazing services and solutions – discover which one best meets your needs. Don’t miss the PIMtalk podcast, The Translation Agency Battle, to hear our partners battle it out on air while delivering more insights.

Question: What makes your solution the best for translation needs?

  • Answer via Søren Traumer Schønnemann, CCO, LanguageWire:
    Our platform is fully transparent and the place to go for all your language and content needs. From services, content tools, custom or standard translation workflows, translator or expert teams, invoicing and financial data, you name it; you can find it on the platform.We give access to more than 8,000 language experts allowing you to select and tailor your specific requirement. Work closely with you through our local Project Management teams who act as your content experts regardless of the requirements – we guide you so you don’t make mistakes and select only the experts that are right for you. Our integration to inRiver PIM is build by own certified InRiver Developers who have worked close with inRiver to create the best and most robust solution in the market.
  • Answer via Nicholas A. Panagopoulos, VP, Global Strategic Alliances, Translations.com: 
    Translations.com is the $700M leader of the translations industry. Consistent profitable growth over the 26 years since our founding means that no other company in our industry has invested more in research and development. Listening to our 4,000+ customers who use GlobalLink guides our development roadmap.This has led us to create the most innovative technologies and services found anywhere in our industry. One example of this is our AI portal for automated translations. Another example is cloud-based subtitling and voiceover solutions for multimedia. No other company offers inRiver customers our breadth of innovative services and technologies that will help them translate faster and at a lower cost.
  • Answer via Lucy Knowles, Enterprise Client Director, Lionbridge: 
    Complete and robust automation with a seamless integration of translations within the enrichment workflow. This enables our customers to focus on creating the right content to sell their products.
  • Answer via Fredrik Rudberg, Technical Partner Manager, Semantix: 
    Semantix’s solution is deeply integrated into the inRiver PIM, and thus you don’t need any external software. Our intuitive plugin is designed to require the amount least effort on the part of the end user.When you are working in inRiver and creating content that translates into other languages, you are seamlessly integrated into our customer portal, and the plug-in has a scalability that is tailored to each client’s requirements.

Question:  What are the critical metrics of success for translations in e-commerce? 

  • Answer LanguageWire:
    Understanding the brand message. A huge part of the value of translation lies with the understanding of what a given organization is trying to communicate or sell. For e-commerce this is just so much more important since this is the “shopping window” of an organisation. Matching the right language experts to the right companies ensure the right quality and brand message. Direct access to all language experts is a given in such a setup.Understand technology dependencies (which systems is in place and how can they work together in the best possible way).Transparency in processes and projects. If you have hundreds or even thousands of SKU numbers, item lines or similar you really need a system which can inform you exactly of the status at a given time. Identify new items that needs to be processed or already processed items that is pending approval.
  • Answer Translations.com:
    To reach just 50% of the worldwide online audience, you must translate content into four languages. To reach 97%, you must translate content into 58 languages. So, translation is a reality of any company selling online.In the e-commerce world, the most important metric we see our customers consistently concerned with is time-to-market. More than anything, they need and want to get their product data translated quickly, accurately, and posted to their sites so customers may make a purchase.This is why we built an AI-driven translation management system and services. It helps customers get to market faster and at a fraction of the typical cost for translations. This means you can enter more markets more quickly. You might not be able to reach 97% of the online audience, but you can get close!
  • Answer Lionbridge:
    • A fully integrated solution to ensure maximum efficiency in terms of speed and time to market.
    • A solid understanding of cultural differences in different markets and how to successfully connect with local customers.
    • Working with a language partner that has the capability to scale quickly for new markets and volumes.
    • SEO integrated into the translation workflow to ensure local market findability.
  • Answer Semantix:
    Our goal is to help our clients to raise their conversion rate, in other words, to increase their income and grow their business. To do this, it is important to localize the text to the specific market and the local tonality as well as to work actively with SEO together with the client. Semantix is a partner in a broader perspective, and we can guide our clients in best practices for specific countries, such as payment and shipping solutions.

Question: Coolest use-case you’ve seen for your solution?

  • Answer LanguageWire: 
    LanguageWire’s integration of inRiver PIM within L’Oréal eliminated an extremely time-consuming process. Their translation process consisted of a very large and complex Excel sheets and caused exhaustion of internal resources in their multilingual content creation process. LanguageWire is proud of assisting L’Oréal in the digital aspirations for 20% online sale by 2020!
  • Answer Translations.com: 
    Personally, I think the coolest use-cases I have seen are the most complex ones where a customer is using multiple connectors, translating into multiple languages, and launching all of it in a super limited set of time. A good example of this is inRiver’s B2B customer of the year in 2018, Dometic. They successfully launched in 33 countries across 24 languages with the help of inRiver, Sitecore, our GlobalLink translation management system, and our translation services. I love seeing successes like this.
  • Answer Lionbridge: 
    Multiple deliveries reducing time-to-market. For a retail customer we deliver unedited machine translations within one hour of project submission, followed by high quality post edited translations within 24 hours. Essentially giving the customer one extra day to sell their product with localized product information upon launch.
  • Answer Semantix:
    We are working with a Danish company within the fashion industry. This client has customized the setup so that they can match specific content to a particular brand and get an invoice for the current brand. This is all done automatically in the ordering phase.They have a total of 20 different brands with one to three content managers within each brand, and new products and product categories are added on a weekly basis. In other words, they have a high order frequency. With our solution, they save a lot of time and have a very good overview of who has ordered what and how much the cost is for each brand.This makes it much easier for them to plan the campaigns for the different brands, and their time to market has improved significantly. This is a good example of how the plug-in has a scalability that is tailored to each client’s complex conditions.

The varied use cases of translations are hard to ignore in global e-commerce organizations. To learn more about the value of translations and how to measure success, please listen to the PIMtalk podcast, The Translation Agency Battle.

A special thank you to our translation agencies for their insights.

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