The world is a global market, and fintech companies are forever expanding to meet that global demand. However, the international expansion of these companies is not without its challenges; namely building trust in global markets, guaranteeing total security across all tech products, and ensuring regulatory compliance in different countries.
There are various tools and strategies available to fintech companies to overcome these challenges, but one of the most important is localization.
In this article, we will explain what localization is, how it can help fintech companies to expand into new markets, and the benefits it can provide to both the companies and their customers.
What is Localization?
Localization is the process of adapting your products or content for a certain market. It involves the accurate translation of both text and multimedia content and can be used for the products themselves as well as social media platforms, websites, marketing materials and customer support.
For fintech companies, this means creating new localized versions of your financial tech products that are tailored to the specific needs of users in different regions. Effective fintech localization will usually include language localization, cultural adaptation and legal compliance. For this purpose, companies may create their own localization team or hire a localization agency.
What are the 3 Biggest Challenges For Fintechs?
There are three main challenges that any fintech company faces when they are looking to expand internationally:
There have been around 12,000 new fintech startups in just the last few years but many have yet to establish their reputation on an international scale. This is an issue because people are naturally wary to try something before they know it’s safe, particularly when it comes to their finances.
To offer customers safe and effective financial tech services it is crucial that you can maintain the highest standards of security across all of your products. One data breach could not only cause your customers serious financial and emotional distress, but it could also destroy your company’s reputation forever.
3. Regulatory Structures
Every country has its own financial laws and regulations and it is vital that you understand them and adhere to them if you want to provide fintech services and products in new markets.
3 Ways Localization Can Help Fintechs
While all of the above challenges can seem intimidating, effective localization will enable you to enter new markets confidently.
As long as you take the steps to localize every aspect of your fintech products and services, the process will enable you to:
1. Build Trust across Global Markets
Speaking your customers’ language and catering to their unique preferences is one of the most important ways localization can help you build trust when entering new markets. In order to build good relationships with new customers, you need to ensure that users feel a connection to your brand, even if they’re on the other side of the world. This means maintaining brand voice consistency while simultaneously appealing to the needs of customers in different regions through tailored content.
Localization involves translating texts, currency symbols and even specific phrases but this isn’t always easy due to cultural differences between countries. This is why it’s always vital that you have people on your localization team who are either native to your target region or have a comprehensive understanding of its language, culture and people.
Another major part of gaining customer trust is ensuring that their data, personal information and (most importantly!) money is kept safe. Areas that you need to pay particular attention to are storage, data transfer and online payment solutions. Your goal when localizing your fintech products should be to provide a user experience that is not only tailored to each specific region, but that ensures the same security for every user no matter where they are.
2. Improve Customer Experience
There is no one-size-fits-all customer experience strategy when it comes to fintech localization. Instead, you need to adopt a customized approach depending on each individual target region. This means ensuring everything from your marketing strategy and price point to your branding and product menus are designed to fulfill the specific needs of different users.
The biggest sign of successful localization is when each version of a fintech product feels like it is the original, not just an adaptation or translation. Customers want to feel appreciated and so you need to provide a user experience that takes into account not just their basic language needs but also their specific cultural requirements, such as using the right date formats and knowing which colours have cultural significance.
In order to understand customers across different cultures, it’s vital that you not only conduct thorough market research but that you also engage with them directly through social media, focus groups and other interactive strategies. This will give you invaluable feedback about their lifestyles, wants and needs, and, most importantly, what they are looking for in a fintech product or service.
3. Gain a Competitive Advantage
Effective localization offers so much potential when it comes to gaining an edge over your competitors. Not only will you be able to engage with customers more effectively in their own language, but you will also be able to offer your fintech products and services in regions where there is little competition.
For example, there are an estimated 1.7 billion people in the world who don’t have a bank account, many of them in developing nations, and yet many of these people are smartphone users. This means that if you are able to effectively localize your fintech banking solutions to appeal to those people, there is a huge opportunity for elevating your company above both competitor fintech companies and the traditional banks in those countries. With many people in the world becoming more and more skeptical of the banking sector, and the rise of tech-based financial products like crypto, there really is a whole world of potential customers to reach out to.
Localization is important for the successful international expansion of every type of business, but for fintech companies, it can be an absolute game-changer. Effective localization will enable you to build a trustworthy reputation, comply with local and international financial regulations, provide a winning customer experience and leave your competitors trailing in your wake.