Are you actively engaged in a global digital marketing campaign? Or do you lack the resources to effectively manage multiple international sites? According to a recent survey of 200 U.S. based CMOs and VPs of marketing by Limelight Networks, more and more companies plan to add multiple regional websites and languages within the next year to build global brand awareness and drive revenue, but many still lack the resources necessary to make it happen.
The Challenges of the Global Marketplace
Participating within the global marketplace takes more than just showing up. For the purposes of this survey, Limelight defined the globalization of a web presence as the development, deployment and regular maintenance of distinct sites with regionally-specific content. Effectively maintaining and managing these sites requires more than the right tools; it also demands a commitment to global literacy of both language and culture.
More Regions, More Languages, More Content
The report showed that 24 percent of those surveyed actively manage 3 to 5 regional websites, while another 25 percent actively manage 6 to 10. Additionally, 65 percent are planning to add 2 to 5 more regional websites to the mix, with 56 percent intent on adding 2 to 5 more languages. Not only does this put more onus on website designers and developers, it also requires more access to translators and native speakers for content and marketing development, not to mention content managers who can adequately edit and manage the workflow.
Many companies are savvy enough to know that content developed can’t just be direct translations or recapitulations of existing content in order to be effective. The survey showed that a majority of respondents said that a significant portion of content -- between 41-60 percent -- is regionally-specific.
The result of their efforts is not in vain. Ninety-one percent of participants acknowledged that their globalization strategy has produced meaningful improvements in website engagement, lead generation and revenue.
Lack of Resources Abound
That said, the survey also highlighted the challenges that website globalization brings. A full sixty percent of survey respondents would add even more regional sites to bolster globalization efforts but cannot due to a variety of issues, such as budget and staffing constraints, and technical resources.
Being able to develop regionally-specific content is one thing. Being able to regularly update and manage it, is another. Respondents indicated that a considerable amount of content on their regional websites is out-of-date or behind at any one time:
- 25% answered that less than 20% of content is out-of-date or behind
- 26% answered that 21-40% of content is out-of-date or behind
- 27% answered that 41-60% of content is out-of-date or behind
- 18% answered that 61-80% of content is out-of-date or behind
- 3% answered that 81-100% of content is out-of-date or behind
- 1% answered that they are unsure how much of their content is out-of-date or behind
A Global Content Management System
Put together, the demands and challenges of website globalization identify the need for a reliable and agile Web Content Management (WCM) system that can enable multi-site management from a single account, while making it easy to share and reuse content, target content and changes across multiple web and mobile domains.
Whether the pressures of globalization are too great to bear, or dictating your digital marketing strategy, it’s important to put the right technology, tools and team into place before you start your global campaign.