How Headless eCommerce Supports Internationalization Strategy

November 6, 2018

Category: Best Practices

Can you easily roll out an eCommerce internationalization strategy if you add a new international sales channel?

It’s no secret that the future of B2B eCommerce is bright. According to Forrester Research, it’s estimated that B2B eCommerce transactions will be $1.2 trillion by 2021. As a manufacturer or distributor, you’ve likely already invested in eCommerce and have reaped the benefits that come with opening up online ordering to your customers.

Now you’re looking for new ways to drive growth in 2019 and have decided it’s time to take your business international. Selling internationally is a huge undertaking for your business, but you’re sure it will allow you to increase your revenue and expand your customer base.

You notice there’s a market for your products in Canada, so you decide to focus your cross-border expansion strategy there. So, you put together your expansion game plan and get all of your stakeholders on board.

You’ve gone over the intricacies of the laws, regulations, and rules that come along with selling in Canada, but there’s something relatively simple that you’ve overlooked.

Languages and Currency.

While you aren’t planning on adding any “eh’s” to your website, you quickly realize that there are about to be customers coming to your site that speak French Canadian and pay with Canadian Dollars and they are going to need to place orders.

With traditional eCommerce technology, incorporating a new language or currency might leave you with no choice but to build a separate application for your new audience. API-first, headless eCommerce platforms give you the flexibility you need to quickly scale and grow your business, whether it’s incorporating an internationalization strategy or something else altogether.

Here’s how API-first, headless eCommerce platforms supports your eCommerce internationalization strategy:

  • A Headless Platform allows you to modify the user experience without disrupting the back-end: “Headless” means that the front and back end of your platform are decoupled. This allows you to add a new language and currency to your site’s user experience without the risk of a disruption to the back-end architecture. It also allows you to do this without having to build a new site. With a few modifications, you can update your application to display the correct language and currency based on the IP address location of the buyer.
  • APIs allow you to utilize best-of-breed technologies, like translation tools: An API-first eCommerce platform allows you to easily integrate with other applications. Your application can easily “call out” to a translation API. Modern technologies like APIs allow you to programmatically translate your site to your desired language, such as French Canadian. No need to spend time translating every word on your site. You can use the same process to convert currencies. 

API-first, headless eCommerce allows you to do more with your eCommerce experience faster. You’ll be able to make adjustments and customizations to the user experience, and take advantage of best-of-breed technologies to get ready to launch your business in a new country quickly.