An analysis of 250 global web sites — from Amazon to Zara — the leaders, the laggards, the best practices
Web globalization often leaves people with more questions than answers, such as:
This report, published annually since 2002, answers these questions and many more. You’ll learn exactly which companies are improving at web globalization — and why. Through detailed website profiles, loaded with screen shots, you'll learn which practices to emulate and which to ignore. An entire section is devoted to the top 20 best practices and top 10 emerging trends in web globalization.
Founded in 2000, Byte Level Research was the first firm dedicated exclusively to the art and science of web globalization. We have consulted with hundreds of multinationals and have learned what works and what doesn't work and, just as important, where their websites are headed. This expertise is carried over into the methodology of the Report Card, the first report dedicated to best practices in web globalization.
We conduct a hands-on analysis of the world's leading websites, analyzing how web designs are shared across countries and mobile platforms, noting languages used on every website, studying local content, social media, and navigation. This information, along with nearly a decade of historical data, will help you benchmark your company against competitive and “best of breed” sites such as Google, Facebook, Amazon, and Hotels.com. A combination of quantitative data and practical, hands-on advice make this report an invaluable resource for any company doing business across borders.
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Facebook emerges as number one, unseating Google
Google, which has held the number one spot for years, was unseated by Facebook this year. Facebook’s recent innovations (multilingual social plugins, improved global gateway, multilingual user profiles) gave it the edge.
Companies like Cisco, 3M, Philips, and NIVEA have become regular faces in the top 25. But there are some new faces as well. There are five companies new this year to the top 25: Volkswagen, Adobe, Shell, Skype, and DHL.
Although these 25 web sites represent a wide range of industries, they all share a high degree of global consistency and impressive support for languages. They average 58 languages -- which is more than twice the average for all 250 sites reviewed.
For the full list of 250 companies included in this report, see below...
Report author John Yunker reviews every website — and has done so for all 10 editions of the report. No work is outsourced. This historical understanding of each website (combined with one-on-one interviews with many of the executives who manage these global websites) provides valuable and actionable findings and recommendations.
We survey a wide swath of global companies across all major industries to provide a well-rounded overview of the state of web globalization. Within each industry, we include the leading companies with a focus on brand leadership. We include more than 30% of the Fortune 100 companies and 70% of the 2011 Interbrand 100 Best Global Brands.
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. 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.
Many of the companies benchmarked within this report have purchased the report for multiple years. Purchasers include Cisco Systems, Deloitte, Panasonic, FedEx, Philips, The World Bank, and Yahoo! There are companies not included in this report that also use it regularly, such as global consulting and IT firms and various government agencies.
Absolutely not. We have never and will never accept money in return for inclusion within the report. Some of our consulting clients over the years have been included in one or more reports and we have used our methodology to help drive positive change within these organizations. That said, we take pride in creating a report that is self-funded and completely independent in focus, content, and findings.
The Report Card analyzes each website according to the following four criteria:
John Yunker has helped a wide range of Fortune 500 companies improve their global websites and application. He has experience consulting with some of the world's largest companies and has also worked as senior program manager at Microsoft. He authored the first book devoted to the emerging field of web globalization, Beyond Borders: Web Globalization Strategies. John speaks at numerous industry events, including Localization World, Internet Retailer, and the Unicode Conference and has been quoted on global topics in publications including The Wall Street Journal and The New York Times. He 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.