For the 2019 Web Globalization Report Card, we studied the following professional services websites:
- Ernst & Young
- Goldman Sachs
For the first year since we began the Report Card (in 2003), every company reviewed in this category made a noticeable (to significant) change to its global web design.
Deloitte took the language lead with 38 languages. Deloitte added two additional localized sites over the past year. It made some slight changes to its web design, which appear to be making the website more customer-centric, a positive development in our view.
Shown below are the home pages for France and Japan, exhibiting global consistency but also plenty of room for localized (and locally generated) content. Too many companies continue to overlook the value of locally generated content.
Deloitte was the first professional services firm to use a globe icon for its global gateway, and it is perfectly positioned in the header. If you don’t understand Japanese, you should still be able to find the global gateway on the screen above.
KPMG, which once led this category, has slipped backwards over the past few years and supports fewer languages. KPMG does use geolocation, but in a way that doesn’t fulfill its true potential.
PwC is second in languages to Deloitte. PwC does a good job of presenting locally relevant content, known as “insights.” Its global gateway, sadly, is poorly implemented. A nice idea but far too complex to be worth the effort. (NOTE: PwC has since launched a new global gateway that is a step, albeit small step, forward)
Accenture trails in languages, but did add a new language over the past year. It still has much work to do in providing a depth of local-language content.
Goldman Sachs is new to the Report Card this year. Unfortunately, it did not score well, with support for only 11 languages and a poor global gateway. And some of the localized sites were so light on local content that we consider them to be “local façades.” Always keep in mind that your website doesn’t get a second chance to make a first impression. If all you offer is a façade, you’re going to have to work extra hard to get your website visitors to return later.
Also, as seen here on the .com website, the global gateway displays country names in English, rather than the local languages. Also, if you look closely, some of the country names spill out of the menu — an awkward error.
Needless to say, Goldman has quite a bit of work to do in how it presents itself to the world.
For the full 500+ page report (and additional reports), check out the Web Globalization Report Card.