E-commerce has developed into its full maturity since its inception in 2000. Nowadays, the challenge that e-commerce companies are facing is no longer about integrating cash flow, logistics, storage and warehouse, but about growth cap in limited single markets. Searching for exponential sales growths, “cross-border” e-commerce has become the most popular new industry. A lot of venture capital money are also pouring in this sector. 

However, cross-border e-commerce is constantly misunderstood as crossing borders to countries where people speak similar languages, where e-commerce has been soaring in recent years. Instead,borders have been crossed to many other countries in single brands, including Japan, South Korea, the U.S., Europe, and Southeast Asia. It refers to a type of international commercial activity which various trading entities trade,purchase, and pay through e-commerce platforms, and then deliver the goods through cross-border logistics. Furthermore, the service-focused e-commerce,such as travel, tourism, and leisure related products, also has commenced to cross boarders to neighbor hood countries.  

Cross-border e-commerce is trending toward multilingualism, as there are more and more countries involved. Cross-border business information and content in rarely used languages are, in recent years, surging, such as Vietnamese translation, Indonesian translation, Thai translation, Burmese translation, Cambodian translation, Arabic translation,and Hindi translation has become the sources of massive growth in cross-border e-commerce markets. 

 “Cannot read, cannot buy” perfectly describes the multilingual demand from cross-border e-commerce companies. The market strategies as well as the establishment of multilingual websites and the demand of multilingual translation and content are increasingly obvious, and the exponential growth in translation demands shows that traditional translation by human translators cannot solve the demand of on-demand translation which also has short turnaround time and massive volume. Employing machine translation with post-editing by humans is able to greatly save translation cost and turnaround time. 

Picture this: your client has begun to translate their product introduction into Spanish, Arabic, and Hindi, etc., and has opened shops in various “small” languages for their own products on cross-border e-commerce platforms, while you are still sticking to the English market. By then, your business rivals are no longer limited to your competitors in your own industry, but tens of thousands of consumers across the oceans.These potential customers of yours have gone directly to other people’s store without you knowing it, and that is how the gap begins to grow bigger and bigger. 

Online auction website Rakuten has conducted an experiment, and found that listings which have been translated into multiple languages by human have a higher click rate of a whopping 30% than those who are left in their original language. 

It is impossible for any product to be in demand in only one region or one country. As long as the positioning of the product is set, and the demands from customers are identified, one product will evoke global demands in many situations. By then, your potential market will be bigger if your products have been translated or localized into more languages,and hence able to reach more consumers, and their sales numbers will naturally grow. Multilingual translation will be your stepping stone on your way to success, and a piece of standard equipment for higher purchasing conversion rate. It is no longer a useless thing nor a waste anymore as you may think. 

For cross-border e-commerce companies,translation is no longer regarded as consumption, but an investment, which significantly increases your revenue.