Localizing your store is a surefire way to grow your Shopify business — but which strategy is right for you? This article explores localization strategies and will help you to determine the ideal approach for your business.
Managing an ecommerce store is exciting, especially when you start to experience growth. There comes a time to recognize the success of your business and consider expanding to new markets around the globe. Implementing localization strategies will support this leap, but it’s important to get it right.
Prepare Your Brand for Growth
Localizing your shop is a smart move. It can introduce you to shoppers in different regions and increase brand awareness, trust and conversions as a result. For every $1 invested into localization, there’s a $25 return. You could be hearing Shopify's "cha-ching!" from all over the world.
If you want to localize and reach new markets, there are two leading strategies to weigh up. You can manage multiple Shopify stores, or introduce some localization tactics into your existing store by using Shopify’s native features.
Deciding which path to take is a big strategic decision — this article will help you determine your path to localization success.
Shopify’s Native Features for Localization
Shopify has a leading edge when it comes to helping merchants localize. Depending on the market you want to capture, you may only have to make a few simple changes.
Shopify supports selling in multiple languages from a single online store and has enabled partners to help merchants accomplish this through API updates. If you’re based in Canada, for example, and want to cater to both official languages (French and English), there are also Shopify apps that can help, such as Langify.
Offering multiple languages in your shop is a simple way to localize content for your customers, but the localization doesn’t have to stop here. When you use Shopify Payments for your payment gateway, you open up the ability to use Shopify’s multiple currencies feature, allowing customers to both shop and pay for their order in their local currency.
These solutions are ideal if:
- You’re looking for a low-budget solution to grow your business or are testing the waters of localization
- You’re expanding to an audience in similar markets (i.e. French-speaking Canadians)
- Your current positioning and marketing still work for a comparable market
But if you want to break into a new area with cultural differences, this route won’t be as effective. Translation can help localized readers understand what you're saying, but it may not influence them to make a purchase.
By considering cultural differences and getting your communication and positioning right, you’re more likely to successfully corner a different market.
If you're in the American fashion industry and are trying to break into Europe, you might discover Europeans care more about the quality of clothing than price. Your current messaging, emphasizing price, could fall short in your new market. Creating an additional, individual store for Europe is more likely to be the answer.
Managing Multiple Shopify Stores
As well as allowing you to cater to cultural differences, managing multiple Shopify stores offers more flexibility and freedom.
You can adapt your storefront to your new market, change what you sell in each country, set different pricing strategies, create marketing campaigns for regional holidays, and have tailored distribution and shipping.
Managing multiple stores is also the best option when it comes to optimizing your store for SEO in different regions.
Intensity, Time and Money
If your localizing journey has brought you to managing multiple Shopify stores, you could face a sharp increase in your admin load. You’ll need to add your products to each new store, which could take hours or even days.
Experienced merchants know that leveraging third-party apps can protect their team from tedious manual labor.
You can rely on powerful bulk upload apps to handle importing data into your new store, and cut out a lot of time and stress.
The Shopify App Store is a treasure trove of helpful apps. Here you’ll find Excelify, which allows you to easily manage your data, bulk importing products with a single click from clear, human-readable file formats.
Automation doesn’t have to be scary – this is how simple setup can be with Excelify:
- Smoothly open a new store or sell on new marketplaces by effortlessly exporting your data with a single file
- Easily administer updates to your store’s data automatically
- Duplicate and backup your shop’s data so you can make changes stress-free.
As part of your localization efforts you can even utilize Excelify to export your products, collections, pages or blog posts ready for a professional translator, then import the translations into your new shop. Ongoing maintenance of SKU, price, inventory and photo uploads can all be taken care of too — if you need to update those in bulk.
Keeping Your Inventory in Sync
Once you’re managing more than one Shopify store, it’s important to ensure your inventory stays synced between your stores. By using an inventory syncing app such as Syncio, when a customer places an order on Store A, your inventory will automatically update for that same product on Store B. Nobody likes to place an order for an item only to find out it’s not actually available — this app will prevent this experience from happening on all of your stores.
Ready, Set, Localize
Maybe you want to break into a similar market and let French Canadians know they can strut your stuff on the cobblestone streets of Montreal. In this case, you choose to enable translations and multiple currencies on Shopify to expand into a similar market.
Maybe you want to take the fashion world by storm and offer your lines to style-savvy Europeans. In this instance, you decide to manage multiple Shopify stores because you know you need to adapt your approach to your new market.
Whichever road you decide to take, automation tools can help make the transition easier and save precious time and resources. You'll be set to sell your products to new markets, earn more revenue, and keep your customers happy.
Are you ready to grow your business?
To learn more about how Excelify could save you time and resources in your localization journey, get in touch via webchat, email or Slack.