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The 2015 Web Globalization Report Card

From Apple to Samsung, BMW to VW, Amazon to Zara — The 2015 Web Globalization Report Card provides a wealth of hands-on best practices and emerging trends.

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Learn from the best (and worst) global websites

Web globalization often leaves people with more questions than answers, such as:

  • What are the emerging trends in web globalization that I should know?
  • What are established best practices in web globalization?
  • What languages should my website support?
  • How do I make the best use of geolocation?
  • And what common mistakes can and should my company avoid?

This report, now in its 11th edition, answers these questions and many more. You’ll learn exactly which companies are improving at web globalization — and why. Through website profiles, loaded with screen shots, you'll learn which practices to emulate and which to ignore. More than a dozen industries are profiled, with key globalization developments and best practices highlighted with screen shots.

More than a decade of web globalization research

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 A combination of quantitative data and practical, hands-on advice make this report an invaluable resource for any company doing business across borders.

Who this report is for:

  • Marketing executives use this report to improve the effectiveness and usability of their global websites. 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 websites — and, more important, makes clear suggestions for improvement.
  • Web and IT 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 exactly which companies are using geolocation right now and which companies are using language detection.
  • Web design firms and advertising agencies rely on this report to upgrade their web globalization skills. This report's accessibility and its wide range of real-world examples makes complex concepts more easily understood.

News & Announcements

  • The Top 25 Global Websites
  • De beste global websites en waarom
  • Purchase Details

    The 2015 Web Globalization
    Report Card: 11th Edition

    Pages: 215
    Exhibits & Visuals: 100+
    Format: PDF
    License: Enterprise

    Pages from the Report Card

    Table of Contents

    Part I: Language Leaders and Trends

    Part II: Emerging Trends and Big Ideas

    Part III: The Websites and How They Were Scored

    Part IV: Website Scores
    • All website scores
    • Global navigation leaders
    • Country codes
    • Icons improve usability
    • Avoid flags
    • Language identification falls
    • Geolocation
    • Leaders in global consistency

    Part V: Website Highlights by Industry

    Return to Top

    The Top 25 Global Websites

    Google emerges on top, yet again. But the fact is the company continues to invest in expanding its global reach. While other web services companies are only just beginning to truly support languages like Romanian and Thai, Google has moved on to languages like Cherokee, Swahili, and Zulu.

    Emirates is the first airline to break into this list. The website added support for two more languages over the past year and has left most American-based airlines far behind.

    Amazon breaks into the top 25 thanks in part to adding one new market and improved support for mobile. Also new to the list is Khan Academy, which supports an impressive 30 languages so far.

    As a group, the top 25 websites support an average of 50 languages; if we removed Wikipedia (which supports an exceptionally large number of languages), the average would still be an impressive 45 languages.

    Companies that have purchased the Report Card over the years

    Thomson Reuters

    Websites Included

  • 3M
  • Accenture
  • Acer
  • Adidas
  • Adobe
  • Air France
  • Allianz
  • Amazon
  • American Airlines
  • American Express
  • Apple
  • Audi
  • Autodesk
  • Avis
  • Avon
  • Axa
  • Bayer
  • BBC
  • Best Western
  • BMW
  • Braun
  • British Airways
  • Budweiser
  • Burberry
  • Canon
  • CapGemini
  • Caterpillar
  • Chevrolet
  • Cisco Systems
  • Citibank
  • Coca-Cola
  • Dell
  • Deloitte
  • Delta
  • DHL
  • Disney
  • Dyson
  • eBay
  • Eli Lilly
  • EMC
  • Emirates
  • Enterprise
  • Ernst & Young
  • Expedia
  • Facebook
  • FedEx
  • FIFA
  • Ford
  • Four Seasons
  • Gap
  • GE
  • Gillette
  • Goodyear
  • Google
  • H&M
  • Heineken
  • Hermes
  • Hertz
  • Hilton
  • Hitachi
  • Honda
  • Honeywell
  • HP
  • HSBC
  • HTC
  • Huawei
  • Hyatt
  • Hyundai
  • IBM
  • IKEA
  • Intel
  • InterContinental Hotels
  • Jack Daniels
  • John Deere
  • Kayak
  • Khan Academy
  • Kleenex
  • KLM
  • KPMG
  • Land Rover
  • Lenovo
  • Lexus
  • LG
  • Loréal
  • Louis Vuitton
  • LUSH
  • Marriott
  • Marsh
  • MasterCard
  • McDonald's
  • Mercedes
  • Merck
  • Michelin
  • Microsoft
  • Mini
  • MTV
  • MUJI
  • NBA
  • Nestlé
  • Nike
  • Nikon
  • Nissan
  • Oracle
  • Pampers
  • Panasonic
  • PayPal
  • Pepsi
  • Pfizer
  • Philips
  • Procter & Gamble
  • PWC
  • Ralph Lauren
  • Reebok
  • Renesas
  • Royal Caribbean
  • Samsung
  • Sanofi
  • SAP
  • Siemens
  • Sixt
  • Sony
  • Sony Pictures
  • Starbucks
  • Starwood Hotels
  • Steelcase
  • Texas Instruments
  • Thomson Reuters
  • Tiffany
  • TNT
  • Toshiba
  • Toyota
  • TripAdvisor
  • Twitter
  • United Airlines
  • UPS
  • Visa
  • VMware
  • VOA News
  • Volkswagen
  • Walmart
  • Western Union
  • Wikipedia
  • World Bank
  • Xerox
  • Yahoo!
  • Zara
  • Frequently Asked Questions

    Who analyzes these websites?

    Report author John Yunker reviews every website — and has done so for all 11 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.

    How do you select companies for your list?

    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 2014 Interbrand 100 Best Global Brands.

    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. 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.

    What companies purchase this report?

    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.

    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. 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.

    Scoring Methodology

    The Report Card analyzes each website according to the following four criteria:

    • Global Reach (Languages): The website supports enough languages to reach a wide global audience. To receive a maximum score, the website must support 47 languages.
    • Global Navigation: Web users can quickly and easily find their localized content, regardless of what language they speak.
    • Global/Mobile Architecture: The website leverages global templates to support global branding while still allowing room for local customization. The website is also accessible via mobile devices, and language parity is maintained with the PC website. Responsive websites and mobile apps are also noted.
    • Localization & Social: The website is relevant to the user's locale and culture and provides functionality on par with the global website. Local-language social media are also supported and well promoted on the local websites.

    About the Conference Call

    An optional call to answer questions and educate

    For an additional fee, you may schedule a 90-minute conference call with author John Yunker. He will share key findings from the report and, if your company is included in the report, will share in-depth recommendations. If your company is not included in the report, he will review your website during the call, pointing out best practices and room for improvement. Every phone call is customized to the client's needs and may cover topics such as:

    • Insights into web globalization workflow and staffing best practices
    • Questions to ask before selecting a localization vendor, CMS platform, or design firm
    • Emerging globalization trends within specific industry sectors, including languages, commerce, and cultural customization.

    Onsite presentations available

    Some clients elect to combine the presentation with onsite training and cross-team meetings. John Yunker has presented to dozens of companies on three continents. Please contact us for more information.

    About the Author

    John Yunker

    Since 2000, John Yunker has helped hundreds of companies improve their global content, websites and software. He authored the first book devoted to the emerging field of web globalization Beyond Borders, as well as the newest, Think Outside the Country. 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 writes the popular web globalization blog Global by Design.

    The Web Globalization Report Card is a copyright of Byte Level Research LLC. Trademark pending.

    A Web Globalization Pioneer

    Founded in 2000, Byte Level Research was the first agency devoted to website and content globalization best practices. Over the years we have helped hundreds of companies improve their global content, websites and software through our reports, consulting, speaking and training sessions.


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