Multilingual Website Benefits

By Susan Vanselow | @vanselow_writes

Five Important Factors for Multilingual Websites

Today we live in a truly global society. Thanks to the Internet, people worldwide can easily learn about products and services—including options for higher education. That’s why it’s important to consider a multilingual website to showcase your school and educational offerings.

Here are the top five benefits for having a multilingual website:

  • You’ll reach a global audience.Less than 20% of all internet traffic comes from the United States. Countries such as China and India, as well as the European Union are heavy web users and generate a great deal of traffic.While English is spoken throughout the world, three-quarters of internet users prefer to read web copy in their native language. Chinese, Spanish, Hindi, and Arabic all rank in the top most-used languages. Creating a multilingual website gives you a global presence, strengthening your brand nationally and overseas, and can help you better reach students throughout the world.
  • You’ll increase leads and prospects.When asked, 60% of users said they don’t stay on English-only webpages, and 90% of the European Union say they prefer to read webpages that are written in their native language.By creating copy written in the user’s native language, you’ll increase engagement. This in turn increases the likelihood that they will stay on the pages to learn more about your school. The greater the engagement, the greater the chances of converting leads who will become students at your university.
  • You’ll improve your SEO. Google is certainly king in the United States, but not every country uses Google or uses it as their primary search engine. Many countries have their own search engines catered to the needs of their own internet users. By making your website multilingual, you optimize your school’s site to attractlocal search engines in different countries. And by demonstrating that your site meets a local need, your ranking will increase globally.
  • You’ll optimize the user experience.A well-localized website, which includes appropriate cultural references and images, as well as translated text, is a great way to improve the user experience. When the user can easily navigate your school’s website without seeing images that aren’t relevant to them, currency that is unfamiliar, or even error messages in English, their user experience is optimized. A better user experience leads to better metrics: more time spent on your school’s site, a decreased bounce rate, and increased conversions.
  • You’ll build relationships—and gain students. Ultimately, a multilingual website helps build relationships. It builds trust by demonstrating to potential students that you understand their unique needs. It shows you’ve created a website focused on helping them gain as much information as possible, in a comfortable, familiar manner. In short, it shows you care. This goes a long way in positioning yourself as a global player in the higher education sector.

Higher education is an investment. Students are wise to do extensive research before they decide to pursue a degree with a particular institution. Schools and universities are wise to invest—in multilingual websites. By doing so, you position your school or university as a global brand. You can reach an even greater audience and create an exceptional user experience. So when it comes time for students to pursue their degree, your school will be the one that is top of mind.

 

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