How Language Affects Online Customer Experience

Online Customer Experience

November 16, 2021

Anyone who has traveled to a foreign country and not spoken the language understands the stress and uncertainty that comes with it. If they have an accent, even native speakers who are specialists in their industries may encounter prejudice. We’ve somehow linked linguistic skills to IQ, despite the fact that this isn’t the case.

Nobody, especially your clients, deserves to be treated as second-class citizens. Despite this, many businesses are finding it difficult to expand their skills into new languages.

Is language connection important?

English as the only language for your business is no longer sufficient. According to a 2020 survey by Common Sense Advisory, 40% of buyers will not purchase products if the companies do not provide native language support. Furthermore, three-quarters of clients demanded product information in their native tongue.

As internet technologies advance, making them more accessible and widespread, the value of a website increases as well. Regardless of the type of business, industry sector, or website’s purpose, a website is an incredibly important asset for any business in the modern globalized world because of its power to attract new potential customers, inform them about your product or service, and – finally – conduct a sale.

When there are speakers of more than one language in the audience, language is a critical factor in driving sales and marketing operations. Even though there are about 1.7 billion English speakers worldwide, only about 330 to 360 million of them consider themselves native speakers. As of 2018, this accounted for about 22% of all English speakers and only 4.73 percent of the world population.

That’s upwards of 95% of the world’s population who will have no idea what you’re talking about on your website in the first place. You’re missing out on a big number of prospective visitors, users, and – most crucially – clients.

Understanding the Language Gap

Many organizations have significant challenges in achieving global diversity and inclusion, but few include linguistic equality as part of their overall strategy. Language equality refers to the ability to have equal access to information, products, and services regardless of the language used. To put it another way, having a great customer experience shouldn’t be limited to English speaking.
For example, businesses are often hesitant to provide customer service and localized content in non-English due to the population of non-English speakers and their relative economic purchasing power.

Nothing compares to the disappointment and, in some cases, the wrath of customers who are interested in buying your product or service but are greeted by a sales or customer support employee who does not understand their language.

Regardless of what you’re selling and who your target market is, being inclusive when it comes to your customers’ matters. It doesn’t matter what industry you’re in: if your customer service doesn’t speak the people’s language, you may expect major client unhappiness.

Providing the Right Multilingual Support: Why It Matters

We’re sure you already have an idea of why multilingual support is important. However, you may need a little nudge so we created this list of reasons why it matters:
It provides access to a wider market.
You may have reason to believe that English is extensively spoken throughout the globe. In fact, approximately 90% of customers will not consider purchasing from an English-language website if they do not speak or understand the language.
So, how do you get into that cross-border market and pique the interest of an international audience in your goods or services? It should come as no surprise that you must communicate in their language.

And you’ll see that it’s well worth it: studies show that organizations that provide multilingual customer service and language interpretation choices receive 70 percent positive feedback.

Increase in sales

It’s really no secret that if a brand’s website and product information are available in their local language, people are more inclined to buy from them.
Consider how many sales you’re missing out on by not using a multilingual strategy.

It’s the same thing if you don’t provide customer service in your customers’ native language. According to a study by Common Sense Advisory, 74 percent of customers are more inclined to buy from the same brand again if after-sales service is available in their native language.

So start catering to a multilingual market by tailoring your customer service and localizing your website!

Gets rid of miscommunication

We usually contact customer service when we’ve run into a problem. Either the product or service isn’t performing as expected, or we’re confused how to achieve the desired outcome. We’re in a position of uncertainty in both circumstances.
When things don’t go our way in that frame of mind, it’s easy to get agitated, which leads to miscommunication, furious emails, and yelling over the phone. Having a dedicated customer service agent who can easily answer queries in different languages will help guide your potential clients and customers.

Gives you an edge over competitors

It might be quite inconvenient to be unable to communicate in a foreign language. It might create an emotional barrier between your business and potential customers.
Consider that for a moment. Assume you’ve worked for two companies that sell similar products of comparable value and quality. One company provided a customer support representative who spoke your native tongue and could readily answer all of your questions in your mother tongue, even tossing in a cultural reference. The other company lacked such backing.

You’ve probably realized the value of multilingual customer service and speaking your clients’ native tongue. The next step would be to figure out your strategy – do you need a team to provide customer assistance in 20+ languages, 24 hours a day, 7 days a week? Or can you rely on Google Translate to translate some of your incoming customer emails?

We hope this article helped you realize the importance of language when it comes to online customer experience! Let us know if you have any questions or clarifications down in the comments.

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