Selina Bieber is the Senior Regional Manager for the Mena Region and Turkey at GoDaddy
Although digital transformation has been a crucial goal for global industries over the past decade, the applications of digital technology have grown exponentially in terms of necessity and popularity due to the current Covid-19 pandemic. More than ever, people around the world rely on the internet to accomplish their daily tasks, regardless of geography, age or gender.
When considering the adoption of the Internet and digital technologies, it can be compared to roger, EM (1962). Diffusion of innovations theory of new product development. Tech-savvy people, including web designers, developers, and engineers, and millennials make up the majority of early adopters, but today people of all ages and working in a variety of industries are part of the new majority to learn the technologies and technical skills to use. these new tools and platforms.
In this regard, there is a catch-up opportunity in the region when we look at the number of Arabic speaking users online compared to the number of Arab businesses online. By bridging this gap through the launch of localized language tools, more local businesses can tap into the potential that exists online.
However, the challenge of supporting an Arabic website builder is twofold. First, there is a layer of complexity when it comes to the convergence of technology, especially development languages and spoken languages. At its conception, the world of programming needed a standard language to communicate and develop “code”. This default language is English. While this is convenient for most, it also means that the majority of programs, solutions, and tools have been developed in English using the Latin alphabet. This has made setting up a website in a right-to-left language a challenge both from a development and content perspective.
Second, from a content perspective, English had a first-mover advantage because the Internet was created by those who speak the language. As early adopters in these markets spoke English, content in the same language was produced on the World Wide Web. Fast forward to 2020 and Arabic is the fourth most spoken language online, highlighting the need to better offer local Arabic language content and websites for this growing audience.
In this context, offering an Arabic website builder tool and our online store tool is important for a few different user benefits. By making online tools available in the native language of Internet users, we remove a language barrier that simultaneously provides Arab business owners with access to the solution needed to overcome the barrier of limited languages available in technology development. For customers, they may feel more comfortable doing business with a company that has a website in their native Arabic language.
Having the ability to create and publish a website in Arabic, as well as sell products and services in Arabic, allows local businesses to connect, do business and engage with their customers in their native language, end to end. In terms of the share of online content, having more sites published in Arabic means there will be more information and advice available in the native language of the region. As well as the availability of a range of services and products that may not have been previously available in a customer’s local area.
At GoDaddy, we seek to empower entrepreneurs and small businesses around the world by guiding them through their online journey and recognize that the ability to unlock the potential/benefits of digital often requires support, guidance and guidance. Arabic website builder makes it easier for businesses to connect. In addition to using localized content and available support, as well as empowering clients with the necessary knowledge, they need to plan, build, market and grow their online presence in the Arabic language.
As we get more Arabic-speaking users online, we also collect quantitative and qualitative data that allows us to gain insight into the unique habits, needs, and behavior of Arabic-speaking users. All of this serves to create a more inclusive internet and a range of online tools across the globe.
Tim Berners-Lee, inventor of the World Wide Web, once said, “The Web doesn’t just connect machines, it connects people.”
As people across the region go online, a factor for which the current global situation has been a catalyst, the potential for economic growth is growing. With the increase in accessibility, more examples and inspiring stories are being featured in hopes that more companies will follow suit. Conversely, as more businesses and entrepreneurs find the confidence to dip their toes in the water, they can assess the value of how an online presence can help their business grow.
Finally, as we look to the future of digital transformation, we must consider how much this landscape has changed. In the early 2000s, websites were seen as an online extension of corporate brand identity, but today a website is a mutually dependent element of a broader online presence and a digital marketing strategy.
I am confident that through continued optimizations in technology personalization, advertising, and quality content, consumers will be connected with businesses they deem relevant, contributing to overall economic growth and efficiency.