One such company is an 8-year-old outfit called MotionPoint, which has an interesting method for mirroring retail sites, described in this Wednesday (Sept. 2) story in The Financial Times of London: "When a customer wants to access a foreign language version of a particular site, page or item, a MotionPoint server passes on the request to the original site. The response, in English, prompts MotionPoint to retrieve a previously translated version of the page or item held in its own stored data and send it on to the customer. The foreign language versions of each page or product are kept updated by human translators, who use software that ensures the translation fits the space available on the page. They are also automatically alerted to changes made on the original site, enabling material to be updated within a few hours rather than the days required by a traditional operation with translators not working directly on a Web-based system."
With the frequent product changes executed by any large e-tailer's site, the tech hurdles of launching a mirror site in another language can be daunting. But this challenge has created a small industry of companies that are trying to facilitate rapid globalization for e-tailers.