There is a common saying that we should “think globally, act locally”. So, when you take your business to a global scale, we make it our job to help you consider the best ways to “localize” your customers’ experience.

Decoding localization

We understand not everyone has the budget to localize and translate their entire website. Zonos can provide you some easy and excellent wins to achieve the best possible experience on your current website and give international customers an astounding experience when buying from a US retailer.

For your customers’ experience, these are the areas we can help you localize.

Zonos Hello

Zonos Hello is triggered and displayed to any buyer outside your domestic country and is the perfect way to let shoppers know what the buying experience will be like from your website. Welcoming the customer to your site is a prime opportunity to let them know how localized their shopping experience will be.

For example:

  • Set the expectation they are buying from a US website, and they will shop and pay in their currency with local payment methods.
  • Mention you will calculate duties and taxes and they have the ability to check out in their local language.
  • Hello supports translation so you can set expectations in their native tongue.

Shipping policies

Many times, international customers visit your shipping policy page to find out if you even ship internationally. Hopefully, we can reduce that fear with Hello. Instead, you can use your shipping policy page to provide more in-depth information on topics such as deliveries within their country, your offered shipping methods, international returns, shipping costs, and store policies. You can also customize the messaging with Hello, such as linking to your policies to make it easy to find.

Shopping in local currency

According to PayPal’s Cross-Border Consumer Research, when international customers were asked…

“Which, if any, of the following would make you more likely to buy from a website in another country?”

In their answers, currency was a major factor. The Zonos API, as well as Shopify and Magento apps, support currency conversion for 142 different currencies.

Checkout translation

Translation is a fundamental component of offering a localized experience. Zonos Checkout supports translation from English into 18 different languages. Zonos Checkout comes translated, so you may even see 37% of all your customers checking out in a different language from what your website displayed. International shoppers are persistent; removing barriers to purchasing will help you acquire more customers and orders.

Checkout form validation and descriptors

If your address fields are not dynamic by country, then you have not completed the localization experience for your customer. Zonos Localization API and Zonos Checkout supports localizing the address fields to your customer by hiding fields like a postal code field where they do not use postal codes. Also, it will supply correct terminology for that label.

Below are a few examples where countries use different labels than the United States and, in some cases, do not use a city, state, or postal code. Also, you will notice how their postal code field is validated. Any bolded field indicates their label differs from the standard label, e.g. the United States ZIP Code is bolded, because it differs from the norm.

Country City label State label Postal code label and format
United States City State ZIP Code 99999
Bahamas City Island No postal codes
Belize City No states No postal codes
Greece City No states Postal code 999 99
Hong Kong Area, エリア No states No postal codes
Ireland Town County Postal code D99
Jamaica City Parish No postal codes
Japan City, 城市 Prefecture, 県 Postal code, 邮政编码 999-9999
Korea, The Republic of City, 시티 Do 도/道 Postal code, 우편 번호 99999
Mayotte City, Ville Commune Code postal 99999
Russia Gorod, Город Oblast, Провинция Postal code, Почтовый индекс 999999
Singapore No cities No states Postal code 999999
Sweden Locality No states Postal code 999 99
United Arab Emirates Emirate, الإمارة No states No postal codes

Shipping methods

Zonos allows you to describe the shipping service level at checkout differently for each individual country. Localizing shipping methods can prove powerful and give the customer peace of mind, knowing which carrier will be delivering the package. For instance, if you use DHL eCommerce International Mail service, and Canada Post does the final mile of delivery in Canada, you can set your shipping description inside of Zonos to say “Canada Post 4-14 Days” instead of “DHL eCommerce International Mail”.

Messages specific to their location

Setting custom messages at checkout is a great way to give additional information specific to the customer’s location. For instance, the 2019 Chinese New Year is on Tuesday, February 5th. If a customer is checking out late January, the Zonos Checkout can set a message for the slower service levels to China and say:

“This shipping service can take 1-3 weeks for delivery. Due to the Chinese New Year, your order may not arrive until after the holiday when courier services resume delivery.”

You can also say it in Chinese with our translation capabilities.

Paying in currency

Zonos localizes all 142 supported currencies. Localizing currency is not simply changing the currency code from USD. It also involves using the correct fractional separator and currency symbol in the right locations. For example, Japan Yen is a zero-decimal currency. $50.00 USD is converted to ¥5704 without the fractional decimal.

Local payment methods

Our Zonos Payments offers a variety of local payment options, including Apple Pay, Alipay, and more. For example, only 1% of online shoppers in China pay with the typical foreign credit card brands like Visa. So, offering Alipay can have an influential impact on your sales in China.

Post order email communications

If you want repeat international customers, remind them that they purchased from your website. Zonos’ order confirmations as well as shipping and email notifications are all translated.

Zonos recommends…

Invest time and effort into the tools Zonos provides such as Hello, messaging, and payments to localize your customers’ experience. You will see an uptick in conversion and with enough international traffic coming to your website, a substantial ROI for your efforts.