It is no doubt that Asia is on the rise. The region has made enormous economic and technological progress. From being the world’s largest production base of shoes and clothes to one of the largest economies, people in Asia is earning more, getting wealthier, and certainly are spending more.
And China in particular is now the second largest economy in the world with real chances of surpassing the US by 2030. It presents enormous business opportunities to enterprises in all areas. Localizing for China will allow you to enter an online market that registered a more than 25 percent growth.
If you are planning to expand into the Chinese market, you might think that having a website that mainly provides English content is good enough for most Chinese users. Well, you might want to think twice.
Despite the fact that English is considered a second language in most Asian countries, as a majority of them get English lessons at as early as primary school, they simply do not see English as their lingua franca. Therefore, it is only reasonable that most website visitors in the region prefer information to be in their native tongue.
We strongly recommend that you translate all the content that is essential for helping Chinese readers understand your business and then take the next step, whether it’s an on-line purchase, business contact via a lead form, or even following your WeChat account and more.
However, Chinese website localization goes beyond simple translating and requires accurate planning and a good understanding of your targeted market. For example, Chinese make the difference between the written and spoken language. Moreover, the official language of the country is called Simplified Chinese, and most businesses localize for this language only. However, if you plan to localize your site or app for Taiwan or Hong Kong, you should understand that both of these regions continue to use the traditional language.
Depending on the population you target, it is fairly straightforward to decide which to use. And better yet, you could localize for both to cover the full span of the Greater China market.
If you are ready to localized your website or apps into either Traditional Chinese or Simplified Chinese languages, you definitely need to rely on a trusted translation partner who understands the barriers, challenges, culture differences, and useful tips. Just forget about machine translation—there’s no substitute for an experienced team of native linguists. Poorly translated Chinese can sometimes lead to unacceptable mistakes and huge losses.
If your business is looking to enter the Chinese market and would like to learn more about Chinese translation, please do not hesitate to contact X Creative Media. We are always happy to discuss and answer any questions that you may have.
Author: Chang Chia-Chi
Editor: Stella Kao
X Creative Media, a localization and digital marketing expert based in Asia, provides first-hand market information, insightful analysis and local knowledge about Asia and the world.