Although the Japanese market could be full of opportunities for any brand, it is quite challenging to penetrate this marketplace. The diversification in the culture and language makes it very difficult for brands to localize. If you are someone looking to expand your business into the Japanese market, you better have a good understanding of the market diversities, such as its cultures, customer mindsets, and language.
You can get help from a language service provider, or get localization management software with advanced functionalities to make the localization journey as smooth as possible. Here in this article, we will evaluate different characteristics of the Japanese market that every business should have some idea about before hitting the market. Let’s have a look at the factors that you must consider while entering the Japanese market.
Japanese Market Overview
It is indeed the world’s leading market in technological development and industrial powers. Japan is a market with huge opportunities for trading and foreign investments which makes it a big attraction for global companies. It is also one of the most profitable eCommerce markets that are expected to hit $3.4 billion by 2025. Moreover, the people in Japan are well connected with the culture, language, and social values. Which makes it even more essential for businesses to localize their brands before stepping into this market.
Things to Need to Know about the Japanese Market
From translations to localization, there are various factors one has to consider to make a successful expansion into the Japanese market. Here is what you need to know about the Japanese market.
Understand Japanese Customers
Understanding the core psychologies of customers should be the first thing you must do before expanding your business to Japan. In Japan people are tech-savvy, so you have to focus more on the technology side of things. Your technological tools should be meeting the criteria of the Japanese market. As far as buying behavior of customers is concerned, they are quite loyal to existing brands and don’t switch to another brand easily, especially if it looks too western. Moreover, when it comes to raising brand awareness, you better do it in detail and provide comprehensive information about the product. So, instead of being very short and precise about your product information, more details about features and benefits is better. You must focus on providing impeccable customer service. So they could trust you and gather all the required information before making any buying decision.
Lack of English Proficiency
Just like many other ecommerce website design chicago, people in Japan are also not very proficient with the English language. So, for an English brand language could be a major barrier for their brand to resonate with local customers. Language holds a lot of importance for the people of a country. Brands that speak native languages are more likely to grab the attention of customers. It allows the brands to build their lasting authority in the market. For this, you can hire a professional translator or get yourself the best translation management software that can translate into the Japanese language with 100% accuracy.
The complexity of the Japanese Language
Translating to the Japanese language is not as simple as other translations because of the complexity of the alphabet. You can’t even think of hiring a non-native person for the translation purpose because the language script is very different from the Latin alphabet languages. The word order is also different as it follows the SOV arrangement. In contrast to the English language which follows SOV arrangement for placing the subject, the object the verbs in a sentence.
The verb tenses are also very challenging, unlike past, present, and future, they only have two tenses: past and non-past. It’s kind of weird, and it makes the sentence composition and context understanding very difficult. You must get help from a professional translation agency. Make sure you are using a reliable enterprise translation management system for your brand translation project.
Know Japanese Culture
Japan is a culture-rich country and the people are also deeply connected with their culture and values. You can’t get away with simply representing yourself as a western brand. From translation to localizing your product design, you have to keep the culture intact in all aspects of your brand. It would give your customers a sense of belonging with the brand that would have a direct impact on your sales and revenue. Moreover, while doing translation, you must keep the tone formal and polite. Being too casual and sarcastic with your tone might not be a good choice for the Japanese market. Similarly, you have to keep in mind the localization of design and graphics as well. The whole color psychology also varies in different cultures, so you have to be really careful about it.
The Japanese formats for date, time, and currency display are also very different. So you rather use localization management software to manage your brand localization for the Japanese market.