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Is online retail the new gold rush?

Last updated on October 17th, 2016 at 04:30 pm

Is online retail the new gold rush? Retail Gold Rush

Look at the headlines:

  • BURSTING AT THE SEAMS
    Internet Retailer, April 2014
  • IKEA goes flat out with global online expansion
    – The Sydney Morning Herald, May 8, 2014
  • Chinese online shopping could soon be worth more than Switzerland’s entire GDP
    Quartz, May 7 2014

Now, look at the numbers:

  • Thanksgiving online sales were up 19.7 percent in 2013 over the same period in 2012.
  • Black Friday online sales were up 18.9 percent in 2013
  • Cyber Monday online sales were up 20.6 percent in 2013
    IBM Online retail shopping report 2013
  • 60 percent of U.S. retail sales will involve the web in 2017
    Forester research 2014
  • E-Commerce sales as a percentage of total quarterly sales grew from 2 percent in 2004 to 5.8 percent in 2013
    U.S. Department of Commerce 2014

The trend is clear; retailers have noticed and are taking action. Investment dollars are shifting from new stores to larger and improved multilingual websites and online stores. 

On June 10-13, the IRCE (Internet Retailer Conference + Exhibition) will host an estimated 10,000 attendees, 12 percent more than in 2012. The event will cover themes such as E-Marketing and Global E-Retailing. This is where I think the opportunity is for leveraging a good e-commerce site. Global E-Marketing allows retailers and other businesses to expand globally in a low cost and calculated way. 

Investing in Multilingual Website Translation

Creating a multilingual E-commerce site is a fraction of the cost of opening brick and mortar stores in other countries, while opening the market to new products and services. Take Marks & Spencer Plc, who is investing 1 billion pounds in logistics, IT and systems, and has launched a new website. It is targeting a 25 percent increase in international sales in the next 3 years and an increase in foreign profits of 40 percent. The M&S “Bricks and Clicks” strategy is to open stores in high end locations to boost brand awareness and support this with local language websites for online sales.

Website Localization is Simpler Today

It used to take tremendous effort, cost and time to  create multilingual websites. Technology has helped simplify the process, making it possible to localize large websites without having to replicate the website in every language. Translation Proxy Server technology eliminates most of the expensive and time consuming IT effort required to develop and maintain multiple instances of a website.

If online retail is the new gold rush, Translation Proxy Server technology is the heavy excavator that is making it much easier to mine.

Sergio Ruffolo
Sergio Ruffolo
Sergio has more than 25 years of multinational experience providing consulting services and leading IT organizations in Africa, Asia and America, which has given him plenty interesting and insightful lessons to teach about global business. He is fluent in Spanish and English, in addition to conversational Portuguese. He has lived in more than 12 cities around the world, moving around and working in different cultures has left him with a real global perspective. Sergio is a real citizen of the world.