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Website localization into Chinese

Talking about website localization we usually mean translation of the site interface into a foreign language and its adaptation to users residing thousands of kilometers away. You will surely need localization services if you are going to do business with clients from abroad.

It should be taken into consideration that the Chinese market is continually enhancing its positions in the international arena. Thus, in November 2015 the Chinese yuan joined the IMF basket due to the strengthening of the role of the currency. Besides, China is recognized the second most attractive country for investment giving the pas to the USA only and having pushed the United Kingdom out of the top-five.

Nowadays, China is particularly interested in investment into the economic sectors of the CIS countries, and especially Russia. In 2016 Moscow and Beijing continued their work on the project of a refining joint venture and signed cooperation agreements in the aviation field. A new airliner, a product of common efforts of Russia and China, is known to be going to become a serious competitor to the popular “Boeing”. Besides, a project of the trans-European main has been finally agreed, and the first project stage will be implemented by the middle of next year. China also shows interest in Russia’s neighbor – Belarus. Following Mr. Lukashenko’s visit to Beijing (September 2016) a number of agreements were signed including, among the others, a memorandum on joint scientific and technical projects.

It is no wonder that a growing number of large companies tend to localize their web-sources and software for China. However, English, which is so popular now, may not fit in here: the statistics say that only about 200 million Chinese can speak English, which is even less than one fifth of the population (1.35 billion). That is why to have a successful business in China it is necessary to have a website localized in the language which is native for the citizens of the region.

Localization may give you an opportunity:
• to increase the website traffic, which will improve your business;
• to find a common language with your customers, to influence their choice;
• to attract the clients’ attention to the offered services;
• to enhance your proficiency and acquire an advantage over the competitors.

Website localization is a multi-aspect process requiring consideration of both linguistic factors and peculiarities of site construction as well as search engine optimization (SEO) for popular Chinese search engines (Baidu, 360 Search and Sogou).

Thus, for Chinese website localization it is necessary to take into account the following points:
1. Scaling the interface elements in accordance with the content. When preparing translation, you will see that Chinese characters are more compact and need less space.
2. Availability of two Chinese versions of the website. One caters to the P.R.C. and supports simplified Chinese, and the other, using traditional Chinese, is developed for Taiwan, Hong Kong, and Macao.
3. Dialect differences. Citizens of South and North may have a different understanding of the same character. Therefore, the content proofreading for localization should be performed by native speakers from various regions of the country.
4. Integration of local services, e.g. creation of a WeChat company account and running a news blog. This will increase the number of the website visitors and the owner’s income.
5. Special attention given to copyright in China. In case of using the materials infringing copyright, a significant fine is imposed. That is why it is preferable to have the documents confirming the right of ownership duly translated and registered.

Website localization in Chinese is a laborious procedure, and only native speakers can cope with it. Speaking one language with your future clients, our specialists will consider all the above-mentioned factors and adapt the content and interface to the maximum extent possible. In this way, you will show care of your clients, respect for their language and culture, and, thus, you will be able to fit into your business niche in China firmly.