Why are top etailers launching local language websites?

Pooja Vishant | Sep 15, 2020

When you dial Tata sky or a similar service, you have the option to choose English or Hindi, and other regional languages depending on the company. Surely there had to be a reason for incorporating this feature?

You guessed it right. A large part of the Indian population is still not fluent with the English language or are more comfortable in their regional languages. It is not possible to cut them off, so the next best thing to do was to work around it and develop the same systems to suit their language requirements so they could have access too.

Now, major online retailers too seem to see the potential in adopting this technique to accelerate the pace of growth. Many of them are coming out with multilingual features on their websites to attract regional customers.

  • Shopclues will run pilot websites in Gujarati, Hindi and Tamil in a month.
  • Snapdeal started with Tamil and Hindi already and is expected to launch Telugu, Gujarati, Marathi, Kannada and Bengali versions before the end of this year.
  • Jabong also is on the same route of starting local language websites and are in talks with technology partners.
  • Flipkart is also believed to be on the same initiative (but specifics have not been released).

Snapdeal said it got the idea when it saw that over half its customers were opting for Hindi to

What are the reasons for starting regional language websites?

  • Although most people from tier 2 and 3 cities are attracted to online shopping, they are unable to do so due to the language barrier. So with a local language website, they can shop even if they don’t understand English.
  • It is easier to get their confidence, thus translating into purchase of higher-priced items also.
  • Even mobile handsets and networks offer local language services now, due to which internet penetration is increasing. At a time when mobile commerce is on the rise, it is important to facilitate local language websites if possible.
  • When fashion products are becoming increasingly popular, it is easier to connect on an emotional level too which can be done with local languages.
    According to a study by IAMAI, a 24% rise in internet users is expected with the provision of local language websites.

“The English language market on mobile and desktop is reaching a saturation point. Now, the next 300-400 million users will be local language customers,” said Avnish Bajaj, MD at venture

Opportunity for Indian Online Seller with local language websites

It is but obvious that it is easier to connect with a customer in his local language to strike a better chord. So once these online retailers introduce the facility, get onboard with it to reach out to the tier 2 and 3 customers, who currently are a potential customer segment to be tapped into.


About Author

Pooja Vishant

Pooja Vishant

After dwindling with her family business, into travel and hospitality, for more than 3 years, Pooja Vishant found her true love in writing. Happy-go-lucky and cheerful, she loves pink; so pink is the way to go if you want to get into her good books. The Associate Editor keeps track of even a leaf that has moved in the ecommerce world!


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