Global websites and Ecuador, a brief tour

I was in Ecuador recently and carved a bit of time to visit a few global websites — as in the .com address of global brands — to see just how successfully (or not) these brands localize for Ecuadorians.

No huge surprises overall — companies that lead the Web Globalization Report Card tend to do above-average in this market. Note that my web browser was set to English so many websites defaulted to displaying English-language content.

Adobe smartly presents a mix of Spanish and English on this overlay. Visitors can continue along to the English-language US website or visit the Ecuador home page

Amazon uses geolocation to display the country name but hasn’t done much in the way of actual localization. And, yes, that American flag does appear sorely out of place.
Many folks are unaware that has a localized brand name that is used wherever the “proper” name for Hotels is requires, as in

Ecuador is wonderful country for a Jeep and I encountered a few while there.

Finally we have PayPal, which could do a better job of confirming to users that they’ve arrived on the right home page. Yes, it’s in Spanish, but it is fully localized for Ecuador? Amazon, despite the American flags, displays the country name, which alleviates any concerns a user may have about shipping or currency. Also, PayPal does not support the country code for Ecuador, another element that would have served a similar function.

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