Background

Agoda is one of the fastest-growing online hotel platforms worldwide, listing hundreds of thousands of hotels and providing services in 38 different languages. The company was established in 2005 by two veterans of the online travel business and in 2007 was acquired by Priceline Group, the largest seller of rooms online.

Over the past several years Agoda has enjoyed record growth and is viewed by many travel professionals as the one to watch in the travel e-commerce sector. Their success created worldwide recognition and stimulated immediate demand for their website to be available multiple foreign languages, in order to provide a truly global solution.

Challenges

  • With unprecedented growth in global travel, Agoda needed to expand the number of languages of their ecommerce platform to better reach local customers and improve sales conversion.

  • Up until that point, Agoda had not localized their web platform, therefore there were some anxieties generally on how best to approach localization, and the capabilities of the platform and booking engine to display and process multi-lingual data.

  • Agoda had several hundreds of thousands of words of content in different formats, including the website user-interface, booking system, and marketing collateral.

Solutions

  • A methodical approach based on best practices and industry-accepted localization standards, tools and fonts

  • A controlled pilot project in potentially problematic languages

  • Terminology and style guide development to ensure consistent brand message across all languages

  • An aggressive localization schedule to roll-out their website in 15 European and Asian languages

Results

EQHO’s centralized production model gave the client an end-to-end solution, from consultancy through to the final product launch.  Agoda benefited from engaging EQHO in the following distinct ways:

  • Sensible – instead of moving forward with all languages simultaneously, EQHO’s controlled pilot allowed agoda to evaluate the capability of the platform to handle horizontal and vertical text-expansion, and character processing and to assess EQHO’s translation quality and processes before proceeding further

  • Standardized – by following a set of customized processes whilst applying localization industry standards, including tool usage, the translation quality exceeded expectations

  • Streamlined – after a review of the pilot, multiple languages could be grouped together in tiers in order to simultaneously go live with multi-lingual versions, helping to meet Agoda’s aggressive roll-out plans and start recouping their investment

  • Sustainable – there was a single silo to manage and recycle multi-lingual content assets for each target language; assets were leveraged with each project

  • Costs & ROI – By using a single vendor, ROI was easier to calculate and Agoda’s time-to-market revenues far outweighed the cost of their initial investment

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