En Espanol: Are You Shaping Your Online Strategy to Include Hispanics?1 Sep, 2012 By: Alex Agurcia Response
There are more than 33 million U.S. Hispanics online. With the proliferation of sales in smartphones and tablet devices particularly within this segment of the population, the number of Hispanics online is growing at a rate three times faster than the general market.
In the very near future, it is expected that Hispanics will be more likely to go online to research, purchase and review your product or service than their non-Hispanic counterparts. A very attractive consumer indeed, online Hispanics tend to be younger and have more people in their households than the non-Hispanic who is on the Internet. They also tend to be more affluent when compared to the overall Hispanic market.
Surprisingly, we are still constantly being asked by marketers if it makes sense to put up a Spanish website when setting up a direct response campaign. Given the growing critical mass of Hispanics online (plus the fact that Hispanics tend to be more loyal to advertisers who transact with them in Spanish) and considering the relatively low cost of setting up a “sister” microsite in Spanish, it’s difficult to build a case against having a Spanish language site.
Here are the top five tips to keep in mind to optimize your overall online sales and avoid the common pitfalls of setting up and measuring your online Spanish campaign:
- Ensure your content is “trans-created” by experts vs. translated. Even though the quality and quantity of Spanish content on the Internet is increasing in the U.S., it’s still very common to come upon obviously and badly translated sites in Spanish. When setting up your Spanish microsite, be sure to have someone who not only speaks Spanish but also is experienced in Hispanic marketing and copywriting develop or review the content as well as test the actual user experience for you.
- Keep the same look-and-feel and offer as your English site. Hispanics online are very accustomed to working and being entertained in a bilingual environment. It’s very likely that they were exposed to both English and Spanish ads of the same product. In fact, seeing an ad in Spanish that they also saw in English and vice versa has proven to positively reinforce messaging and recall for the Hispanic consumer, increasing campaign sales overall. It is also very common for the Hispanic consumer to reach the Spanish site through the English site. Because of this, the design, overall messaging and offer must be consistent between the sites. In fact, your Web developer, in most cases, should utilize the same templates and back-end system as the English site.
- Expect sales from Spanish media to go through both English and Spanish sites. Based on multiple campaign data, we know that Hispanics are still more likely to stay on the English site to order even when the interest was generated by a Spanish-language advertisement. There are many reasons for this beyond preference, including search engine protocols prioritizing English sites and the lack of trust in the Spanish-content sites.
- Make it easy to find the Spanish site. Include Spanish words in your search marketing strategy. If you are running Spanish media with a unique Spanish URL, Spanish keywords and ad displays should be part of your current SEM strategy and budget. We suggest only the actual URLs and trademarks with obvious Spanish-related words be listed. It’s very common, even when inputting the unique Spanish URLs into the search engines, that consumers are led to the English site, possibly leading to a lost order for the Spanish-preferred Hispanic consumer. Make sure that a visitor can easily click through to the Spanish site from the English landing page.
- Still expect some calls. Hispanics, from a cultural perspective, like to talk things over and ask questions prior to purchasing even though they may research a product online and check out the site beforehand. Data shows that a relatively higher number of calls come through the Spanish site’s order number vs. the English site.