Learn from the best global web sitesWeb globalization often leaves people with more questions than answers, such as:
- What traits are common to the best global sites?
- What are the most popular languages across all sites?
- What sites offer the best global gateways?
- What companies offer local-language blogs and Twitter feeds?
This report, now in its sixth edition, answers these questions and many more. You’ll learn exactly which companies are improving at web globalization — and why. You’ll also learn what mistakes to avoid by viewing real-world examples.
A wealth of actionable dataFounded in 2000, Byte Level Research was the first firm dedicated exclusively to the art and science of web globalization. We have worked with hundreds of multinationals and have learned what works and what doesn't work. This expertise is carried over into the methodology of the Report Card.
We devote more than two months to analyzing the world's leading web sites, noting languages used on every web site, as well as studying navigation and localization. This information, along with eight years of historical data, helps companies benchmark themselves against competitive and “best of breed” sites such as Google, Philips, and Amazon. A combination of quantitative data and practical, hands-on advice makes this an invaluable resource for any company doing business across borders.
Who this report is for
- Web executives use this report to learn best practices and drive changes within their companies based on concrete data. For example, knowing exactly which companies are now using geolocation can help raise awareness and get management buy-in. No other report will tell you which companies are using geolocation now -- and when they added it.
- Marketing executives use this report to improve the effectiveness and usability of their global web sites. The numerous screen shots included in the report clearly illustrate trends and best practices. The report points out flaws in many of the world's most popular web sites -- and, more important, makes clear suggestions for improvement.
- Web design firms and advertising agencies rely on this report to upgrade their web globalization skills. This report is easy to read, and the wide range of visuals makes complex concepts more easily understood.
Table of Contents
- Executive Summary
- Top Findings, Trends, and Recommendations
Part I: The 225 Web Sites and How They Were Scored
- The 225 Web Sites
- Industry Overview
- Scoring Methodology
- Global Reach (Languages)
- Global Navigation
- Global Consistency
- Community Localization
- Methodology FAQ
- What Do the Scores Mean?
Part II: The Best Global Web Sites
- The Top 25 Global Web Sites
- What the Best Sites Have in Common
- All 225 Web Site Scores
- Most Improved Web Sites
- Best Web Sites Under 10 Languages
- The Laggards
Part III: Key Findings and Trends
- Languages: How Many?
- Languages: What's Hot?
- Global Navigation: The Top 20
- Splash Global Gateway Usage
- Flags, Globes, and Other Visuals
- Language Negotiation Usage
- Geolocation Has Emerged
- Global Consistency: The Top Scores
- Localization: The Top 25
- Community Localization: The Top 10
Part IV: Industry Profiles and Company Insights
- Industry Leaders
- Business Technology
- Consumer Goods
- Consumer Technology
- Financial Services
- Professional Services
- Rental Cars
- Social Networking
- Sporting Goods
- Video Games
- Web Services
The Top 25 Global Web Sites
Google has emerged on top again, but just barely.
The big story this year is that Facebook and Google finished in a numerical tie. But because Google supports more languages (for now), it edged out as the winner.
Moving down the list, there are a number of familiar faces -- companies like Cisco and Philips, Panasonic, and NIVEA. But there are some new faces as well. Samsung jumped up in the rankings due to improvements to global navigation and localization. Kodak, Symantec, and Autodesk are also new to the top 25.
Although these sites represent a wide range of industries, they all share a high degree of global consistency and impressive support for languages. They average 50 languages -- which is more than twice the average for all 225 sites reviewed.
For the full list of 225 companies included in this report, see below...
Companies IncludedThe report rates the web sites of the 225 companies listed below alphabetically:
|American Airlines (Best Airline Site)||www.aa.com|
|Archer Daniels Midland||www.adm.com|
|Black & Decker||www.blackanddecker.com|
|Briggs & Stratton||www.briggsandstratton.com|
|Deloitte Touche Tohmatsu (Best Professional Services Site)||www.deloitte.com|
|Dollar Rent A Car||www.dollar.com|
|Ernst & Young||www.ey.com|
|InterContinental Hotels (Best Hotel Site)||www.ichotelsgroup.com|
|McKinsey & Co||www.mckinsey.com|
|Procter & Gamble||www.pg.com|
|Voice of America||www.voanews.com|
|Volkswagen (Best Automotive Site)||www.volkswagen.com|
Below are the same 225 companies included in this report grouped by industry category:
Frequently Asked Questions
Do companies pay to be included in this report?Absolutely not. We have never and will never accept money in return for inclusion within the report.
How do you select companies for your list?We select companies based on their inclusion within the Fortune 100 and/or Interbrand 100 as well as their investment in web localization. Companies that do not support at least two languages on their web site are not included in the report, regardless of their revenues. We also make an effort to include smaller multinationals and start-up companies that have developed impressive global web sites. We survey a wide swath of global companies across all major industries to provide a well-rounded overview of the state of web globalization.
What’s the value of comparing companies across different industries?Web globalization best practices may emerge in any industry. By keeping a broad focus on all major industries, we are able to point executives to those companies and industries that are doing the best job of presenting themselves to the world. While this report compares companies that have little or nothing in common with one another, every company included does have peers by which it can be evaluated. In the end, our goal is to provide a truly global perspective on which companies and industries are the most active and successful in web globalization. Only through casting a wide net do we achieve this goal.
Scoring MethodologyThe Report Card analyzed each Web site according to the following five criteria:
- Global Reach (Languages): The web sites support enough languages to reach a wide global audience.
- Global Navigation: Web users can quickly and easily find their localized content, regardless of what language they speak.
- Global Consistency: The web site leverages global templates to support global branding, operational efficiency, and usability.
- Localization: The web site is truly relevant to the user's locale and culture. Products, promotions, and customer support information is all localized.
- Community Localization: Content is sourced and/or translated locally via community and social networking platforms.
About the Authors
Midge Raymond has co-produced every edition of The Report Card. She has more than a decade of experience in writing, editing, and publishing, having worked with such publishing houses as Penguin Putnam, St. Martin’s Press, Bantam, and Houghton Mifflin. She taught communication writing at Boston University, where she earned her master’s degree in international communication. An award-winning writer, she writes for both print and web publications. Midge is author of the award-winning short story collection Forgetting English.
John Yunker has worked with a wide range of Fortune 500 companies, as both a consultant and employee, most recently as Senior Program Manager at Microsoft. He has authored a number of landmark reports, including The Report Card. He authored the first book devoted to the emerging field of web globalization, Beyond Borders: Web Globalization Strategies, and has spoken at numerous industry events. John is a fellow with the Society for New Communications Research. John is also editor of the popular web globalization blog Global by Design.
The Web Globalization Report Card is a copyright of Byte Level Research LLC. Trademark pending.