The New York Times reports that Amazon is adding a new language to its site and apps. Obviously, Amazon wants to expand its business in India. So, it is adding Hindi language to its app and site to reach the half-billion people in India who use the language.
Amazon has never added support to any language other than English. Not only Amazon, but also its other competitors have been using only English language. But, English language is spoken only by a tenth of population in India. This is really a very small ratio of people speaking English language.
According to Amazon, providing support to the dominant local language will improve its reach. The site and app will be more user-friendly and appear more trustworthy to Hindi-speaking consumers.
English continues to be the primary language for online retailers in India
In India, Amazon is currently the second-largest online retailer. But, it has been facing a tough competition from Flipkart. Flipkart is a local company, but it is now majority-owned by Walmart. Obviously, Walmart will not want to lose the competition of online retail battle in India as Amazon is leading Walmart in the US. Walmart is currently leading the Indian online retail market. So, it has many chances to improve and give a tough competition.
In India, millions of people gain internet access every year. This number is constantly increasing. Of these people, about half of them are the ones who regularly shop online. So, nothing is going to break the online retail market.
If the company succeeds with the Hindi-language option, it will go with some other popular languages in India. Adding a support to any language for a website or app is not easy. First, getting translations is the most difficult task. Translations are now automated, but getting them done requires human translators too. Human translators can verify whether all the translations are correct and natural.
English-language sites have been dominating the online retail market in India until now. India is constantly growing in its number of internet users. Some popular and local sites have tried to offer local-language support. But, it was not even close to a fully translated version. Amazon will have a fully translated, clear, and natural language support. In the world of internet, number of its users are constantly increasing. So, offering sites with a support to widely spoken languages is an obvious way for reaching new customers.