While the traditional physical presence of industrial companies is generally identified by a large production plant, in the modern era, companies cannot avoid having an online presence also and this is even more true in the highly digitalized China market.
However, China’s digital marketing environment is much richer and complex compared to that of the West and so, how to get started? Having an official Chinese website is definitely one of the essential tools to establish your online presence in China. Let’s see what the specific peculiarities are to take into consideration when building your Chinese website.
Considering China’s tight internet regulations, it is crucial to have your Chinese website hosted on a Chinese server in order to avoid the website being inaccessible in China or slow in loading pages. In addition, websites that are hosted outside of China are less favored by Chinese search engines. This happens because, people in China are most likely to search for local content, so the search engine will recommend web pages hosted domestically.
To host a website on a Chinese server, foreign companies will need to have a company registered in China that can apply to China’s Ministry of Industry and Information Technology for an ICP (Internet Content Provider) license. The process may take from three to six weeks, so it’s better to plan in advance! Please also remember that the license number must be clearly displayed on the website.
Once you have obtained your host, it is important to make sure that the website is user-friendly, so that visitors can easily navigate the website and find the information they are looking for.
No need to say that the website should speak the same language of your audience, that is Chinese. However, do not even think of using online translation tools or a general translator for this job! We would recommend, instead, to turn to a professional marketing agency that could provide copywriting for your specific sector, so as to ensure professional translation and that the content is adapted for the Chinese audience.
As for the interface, in the case of industrial companies, users generally do not expect a highly creative or interactive layout. A clear and simple interface that efficiently communicates the key information, such as company history, global presence, products/services description, news and contacts, will be enough to guarantee a smooth user experience.
Now that the website is built, how to make sure that users can actually find it in the vastness of the internet? Website optimization is exactly what contributes to driving potential leads to the website and successfully converts them into clients.
As users search for websites through search engines, search engine optimization (SEO) is the first step to take in order to make your website appear among the top results on the search engine organically, without paying for ads. Considering that Baidu now dominates the search engine market in China with a share of more than 80%, the inevitable choice is to optimize the website for Baidu rather than Google or even for other Chinese search engines.
One of the basic characteristics of SEO is keywords. Thus, industrial companies will have to identify precise keywords that refer to their specific sector or products and incorporate them into the website, so that the company’s webpage can appear among the most pertinent results for that keyword on Baidu.
Baidu also ranks higher web pages with fresh content. Considering that industrial companies want to attract users with business cooperation intent, industrial companies shouldn’t be afraid of publishing content that might be too industry-specific, because it is exactly what the target audience will be looking for. A few suggestions for content may be: content introducing the high-quality or ecofriendly raw materials used during the production process; news about outstanding results achieved by the R&D department; new product application scenarios. Any content sector-specific will be imperative in increasing the awareness of the company on Baidu.
Foreign industrial companies can’t go without having an online presence in China and a website in Chinese hosted on a Chinese server and optimized for Baidu is one of the essential tools that industrial companies should take into serious consideration in order to show their serious commitment towards potential Chinese clients.
Are you a foreign industrial company based in China, but you still don’t have a Chinese website? Or is your Chinese website never appearing in the top search results on Baidu? Get in contact with our team of experts! We will be happy to support your company growth in China digital market.