Nowadays, every business and non-profit should have a website. This is a must to promote their products, services or a cause. Since the beginning of the COVID-19 crisis, many have had to quickly create a brand-new website, while others had to update their existing one in order to be able to take orders and payments online. This has become crucial to the survival of their business in the last two months.
While having a website has become necessary, should your English website be available in French? Is this really necessary?
Yes, it is!
If your company or organization is based in Québec, by law your website needs to be available in French. As stated in Article 52 of the Charter of the French Language (commonly known as Bill 101), the website of companies with an address in Québec must be at least as complete in French as it is in English. Failure to comply can lead to fines ranging from $600 to $20,000! That’s a hefty price to pay…
Also, by having a unilingual website, you are missing out on opportunities to attract more clients. For example, if you make beautiful hand-crafted soaps and you have a transactional website that makes it possible for people to order your soaps online, but your website is only in English, you are only selling to anglophone clients. However, if this website is also available in French, you can now attract and sell to francophones. Increase your impact! Increase your sales!
The same goes for your non-profit organization. Posting bilingual content on your website will attract more donors, which, in turn, increases the odds of success of your fundraising campaigns.
If you’re not fluent in French and are concerned about answering questions when potential clients call you, consider setting up a Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ) section on your website. If you are selling accounting services, for example, you could include a list of documents to submit at tax season, direct people to government sites, etc.
If you are selling products, this FAQ section can include the best use of your products, and answer questions such as “Are your products tested on animals,” “Are they suitable for children,” etc.
Seriously considering having your English only website translated into French? Or maybe your brochures, email campaigns or product descriptions? Book your free consultation here and let’s see how I can turn this project into reality.
Want to stay connected and get more tips? Sign up here! Each month you’ll receive free tips and resources to help you increase your visibility, reach out to the francophone market, and help you and your business to achieve a coherent and consistent voice. As a thank you, you’ll receive a free Guide to Optimize your Bilingual Email Signature!