While English may be the preferred language for business in many regions, it’s not everyone’s preferred language. Trying to navigate data privacy in a language you don’t understand can be anything but clear.
It’s easier than ever to do business worldwide, which gives us so many more opportunities to find new customers and explore new markets. With this comes the challenge and responsibility of being user-friendly and compliant across multiple regions.
In most cases, there’s a requirement within privacy laws that the information is easy for users to understand. You could argue that if someone’s native language isn’t English, understanding a legal document in that language can be confusing.
Similar guidance applies within Europe and the UK’s General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR). Under the principles of this law, you should process data “lawfully, fairly, and in a transparent manner” and that “clear and plain language be used”. As it’s not fair to assume equal understanding of just one language, efforts should be made to make your information available in as many languages as possible.
It’s easier to do business with someone in the language you’re most comfortable with. Making your privacy statement and other legal documents available in multiple languages gives your customers the opportunity to understand more fully, and put more trust in you.
Here are some brands that offer a translated privacy notice for their users. See how it’s done and take inspiration on how you can create a similarly inclusive experience for your customers.
While this works when you have a large budget and technical team behind you, building separate microsites for each audience is complicated, expensive, and out of reach for most small to medium sized businesses.
Like Facebook, skincare brand Origins has distinct websites for each of their main regions — including the United States, United Kingdom, and Canada. From their main website, Origins.com, users can find the region closest to them and be taken to a standalone website published in the official language for that country.