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Kyero: What (languages) EU buyers want

[Reproduced Kyero article] Spain based property portal Kyero’s data reveals a wide range of reactions from buyers when you speak their native language (although they’d be too polite to tell you).With 2.6 billion English and Spanish speakers in the world, it’s easy to think two languages are enough for dealing with most buyers. This may be true in a face-to-face meeting, when the nuance of hand gestures and arm waving can go a long way.

The Internet is a more brutal medium.

People are impatient online and a study of Kyero’s traffic reveals a very different picture. We took a deep dive into data from each of the major European buyer countries, comparing the visitor’s default browser settings (the best way of guessing their native language) with the pages they viewed on Kyero. We were looking to see how they reacted to properties listed in their native and non-native languages.

Brits only speak English

Our first conclusion confirmed an old stereotype: British buyers really do only speak English. They’ll quickly leave when they stumble on a non-English page.

However other European nationalities showed wide variations in their reaction to translation, with one group in particular standing out:

Germans are (too) polite

German users are most likely stay around and read pages that aren’t in German, but sales leads rise dramatically when they see a property listing in their mother tongue.

It seems German users react politely when presented with a non-German page – but they secretly hate it. Switching to a German translation results in nearly three times more sales leads.

Germans are the most affluent buyers of property in Spain (spending around 73% more per square metre than the national average) and translating your pages into German is clearly a very profitable move.

The French and Dutch are unforgiving

These two buyer groups attract similar traffic levels to those from Germany, with each country generating just over 50,000 visits to Kyero in June.

French and Dutch speakers are less tolerant of non-native languages than Germans (preferring their own language over 80% of the time) and translated pages result in a much higher lead rate.

They may not react quite as violently as Germans, but the French will clearly punish non-French speakers with a firm Non when you get it wrong.

Pragmatic Swedes

The other major buyer groups in Belgium, Italy and Sweden were the least tolerant of all; they overwhelmingly prefer pages in their own language. However, it’s interesting that Swedes in particular don’t enquire any more when you speak Swedish.

A quick look at the world popularity of languages reveals why:

Swedes clearly want a Swedish translation, but since almost nobody speaks Swedish (only 9 million speakers worldwide) they are very comfortable with an English version instead.

NOTE: This article was reproduced for information purposes entirely from a Kyero report titled “The buyers who are too nice” dated 27th July 2016.

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Catherine Defoe About the author

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