"I want to buy and sell online in Japan."
GoConvert's step-by-step guide to buying and selling online in Japan can help. We've broken it into two parts: infrastructure and campaigning. The first part is based on our experiencing launching localized marketing assets in Japan. The second is based on customer campaigns we've run in Japan and elsewhere in the world. Together, we hope this guide not only adds to the growing body of work concerned with Japan marketing but stands as the clearest and most comprehensive Japan marketing guide available.
Learn how GoConvert helps customers launch marketing assets, conduct paid marketing campaigns, and track the ROI of marketing and sales spending in Japan.
"This guide helped us buy and sell online in Japan."
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Launching marketing assets in Japan involves a number of different kinds of tasks. We’ve organized these into five categories below. While the categories aren’t strictly linear, you’ll find the process runs as smoothly as possible if you start at the top and make your way to the bottom.
Step 1: Hosting
First, you’ll want to set up a hosting account with a company that has data centers and CDN points of presence (PoP) in Japan. A Google search for “Japan web hosts” will give you some options.
Step 2: Administration
Set Up Business Entity (Optional)
You may want to create a legal entity for your business in Japan. A Google search for “set up Japan business entity” or “incorporate in Japan” will uncover a number of vendors who can help with this process as well as some DIY “how to” articles.
Register .jp TLD (Optional)
Registering a country-specific top-level domain (TLD) is optional, and doing so often requires the registrant to meet certain residency or citizenship requirrements. You can serve your Japan-based site from any valid TLD, subdomain, or public IP address. However, some organizations may want to use a country-specific TLD for branding reasons. If youâ€™re interested in registering a custom .jp domain, a Google search will reveal a host of vendors.
Marketing to Japan Insight
To speed up your web content, we suggest having your DNS resolve inside Japan. If you registered your domain and/or manage your domain’s DNS elsewhere in the world, requests for your domain will need to constantly enter and exit Japan’s national network. This will slow your site speed considerably. To get around this, either register you domain with a registry in Japan or use a cloud DNS service like Amazon Route 53.
Step 3: Content
There’s no shortage of payment processing solutions available. PayPal/Xoom, Stripe, Square, Payoneer, and others can all help you accept payments from customers around the world. If you find your preferred solution doesn’t operate in Japan, find an alternative in this list.
Translate all site copy and SEO resources/meta tags into To reach the greatest number of people in Japan, translate all site copy and SEO resources/meta tags into Japanese and Japanese. Google Translate can help create a first draft. However, before launching your site, have a native speaker and/or localization professional review the translated copy to ensure it communicates clearly and reads comfortably.
Localize Social Media
In addition to whatever marquee, global social media services you want to use, review this list of social media sites and find any that are popular in Japan. This will help you cultivate a local audience using the channels it prefers.
Step 4: Development (Launch Prep)
Google Analytics is free, and adding it to your site will give you granular insight into a range of website activity including where your traffic comes from, how long visitors spend on your site, and which (and how many) pages they view. If you’re unfamiliar with Google Analytics, Moz has a helpful beginner’s guide.
Use Google Search Console to manage sitemaps, review indexing frequency, check for crawl errors, &c. (Bing has a similar solution.) If you’re unfamiliar with Google Analytics, Moz has a helpful beginner’s guide.
Make sure your images are less than 50k, that you’ve minified your front-end code, and that you use caching mechanisms. If your organization can make do with a static site or landing page for Japan (vs. a database-driven CMS), you’ll improve your page load time and harden your security.
Step 5: Development (Post Launch)
After you launch your site, you’ll want to test site forms, chat applications, and any other third-party integrations to ensure they’re working normally. Moreover, you’ll want to review these regularly to ensure they haven’t suddenly stopped working. Marketing automation tools, data tracking solutions, custom fonts and icon sets, embedded maps and videos, API integrations — these can put upward pressure on site load time and, if the connection fails, make your site render incorrectly or prevent it from loading altogether.
This article lists a few resources that will allow you to test your site’s load speed. Google Analytics and Google Search Console will also help you identify any performance issues.
How does GoConvert help customers market to Japan?
By combining the self-sufficiency of an application with the expertise of an agency, GoConvert uses four actions to help customers quantify results, maximize ROI, and achieve their marketing goals.
GoConvert uses all available data resources — ad vendor data, social media intel, analytics, contact information, and other digital signals — to continually fine-tune our customers’ audiences. We always know whom we’re speaking to and how well we’re resonating with them.
GoConvert uses audience intelligence to build highly-relevant marketing collateral. This helps ensure content topics, social media channels, and ads align with known audience variables. Now, marketing spending has the potential to generate exponential returns.
Lead Generation & Nurturing
We use audience-specific marketing assets from the first section to generate a steady stream of leads for our customers. This allows them to nurture prospects along a well-defined conversion path and creates additional front-line intelligence we can use to fine-tune our various audience hypotheses.
Measuring, Analyzing, Reporting, Learning & Fine Tuning
We use engagement data and other digital signals to constantly learn from our marketing efforts and improve our audience models. This allows us to fine-tune collateral resources, improve lead generation, hone conversion workflows, and improve overall marketing efforts (on- and offline).
“What makes GoConvert different?”
Discover how these philosophies help our customers maximize the ROI of their marketing spending.
i. Awareness-Stage Japan Marketing Guidelines
When running ads that target audiences in Japan, marketers have a lot of vendor options. Generally, GoConvert uses low-cost initial spends to identify the highest performing channels. Then, once we find the channel or channels that deliver the best CTR, CPC, and lead/customer conversions, we steadily increase spending with those vendors.
Those You Know
Most marketers are familiar with these companies. GoConvert automatically aggregates data from these vendors, which allows us to build powerful trend models for our customers.
Here's a snapshot of the real-time awareness-stage performance of the GoConvert customer network, including Japan marketing campaigns.
CPM Performance Snapshot
Currently, our customer network pays $7.66 per thousand impressions. That’s 69.36% below the agency benchmark and 17.72% below the ad vendor benchmark.More Digital Marketing Benchmarks
ii. Interest-Stage Japan Marketing Guidelines
CTR & CPC
When marketing to Japan, it’s critical for marketers to track click-through rates (CTR) and the amount they pay per click (CPC). Luckily, no matter what ad vendor you’re using to raise awareness, these work the same way in Japan as they do elsewhere in the world.
And your goal is the same as well.
Fine tune audience data, and use that intel to improve the alignment of channels, messaging, and creative. This will maximize the number of clicks and minimize the amount you pay per click.
We call this the “virtuous gap.”
It’s marketing in its most harmonious state: putting sustained downward pressure on CPC (red) while simultaneously putting upward, even exponential pressure on CTR (gray). More often than not, the virtuous gap has positive collateral effects on lead flow as well.
Learn More about the Virtuous Gap
By automatically aggregating marketing data, GoConvert helps customers build models like these, whether they’re marketing to audiences in China or elsewhere in the world. This helps our customers build powerful trend models, reveal actionable insights, and maximize the ROI of marketing spending.
Here’s a snapshot of the real-time interest-stage performance of the GoConvert customer network, including Japan marketing campaigns.
CTR Performance Snapshot
Currently, our customer network sees 4.96% CTRs. That’s 118.50% above the benchmark.Case Study: GoConvert vs. Traditional Digital
CPC Performance Snapshot
Currently, our customer network is paying just $0.25 per click. That’s 82.88% below the benchmark.Case Study: GoConvert vs. Traditional Digital
iii. Engagement-Stage Japan Marketing Guidelines
Japan Lead Generation
To generate leads in Japan, marketers can rely on the same CRM, marketing automation, and form solutions they use elsewhere in the world.
Use web forms to write leads to your CRM, marketing automation system, or other contact database solution.
GoConvert uses Googleâ€™sÂ® reCAPTCHA v3 to score every lead that enters our system. Customers can ignore lower-quality leads and focus on those with higher scores.
GoConvert also helps customers collect everything they need to start building effective relationships with leads. Data points include location and IP information, name and email, gender, age, and phone number. And if a contact is missing info, GoConvert works around the clock to automatically fill in missing data. Audience insights get better all the time.
Respect Data Privacy
To discover which data protection protection laws apply to Japan, review this resource and this article.
If you want to be proactive, manage lead data in accordance with other regulations from around the world like CAN-SPAM, CCPA, and GDPR.
Here’s a snapshot of the real-time engagement-stage performance of the GoConvert customer network, including Japan marketing campaigns.
Lead Conversion Rate Performance Snapshot
Currently, our customer network sees 19.77% LCRs. That’s 327.00% above the benchmark.Case Study: GoConvert vs. Traditional Digital
CPL Performance Snapshot
Currently, our customer network pays just $1.24 per lead. That’s 98.96% below the benchmark.Case Study: GoConvert vs. Traditional Digital
iv. Conversion-Stage Japan Marketing Guidelines
Win Rate & ROI
When marketing to Japan, it’s critical for marketers to track both win rates (the percent of customers you convert vs. the number of leads you generate) and ROI of their efforts (the amount of income you generate for every dollar you spend). Luckily, these metrics work the same way in Japan as they do elsewhere in the world.
And your goal is the same as well.
Boost the ROI of your marketing efforts by increasing efficiency and decreasing waste, using actionable insights to keep ad creative and content well aligned with your audience’s interests, and bringing qualified leads into your funnel. This will help you build a returns-driven, holistically-healthy funnel.
“What is a holistically healthy funnel?”
Holistically healthy funnels are effective funnels. They keep sales and marketing aligned and ensure companies know which metrics and stages need work and which are doing well. After all, an awareness challenge is different from a click through challenge, and both differ from engagement and conversion challenges.
Learn More about Holistic Funnels
Whether they’re trying to reach customers in Japan or elsewhere in the world, GoConvert helps our customers know exactly where they need to focus their attention. As a result, we help them keep effort and impact tightly aligned.
Here’s a snapshot of the real-time conversion-stage performance of the GoConvert customer network, including Japan marketing campaigns.
Win Rate Performance Snapshot
Currently, our customer network sees 1.93% win rates. That’s 43.73% below the digital benchmark.Case Study: GoConvert vs. Traditional Digital
ROI Performance Snapshot
Currently, our customer network sees a 6.36x ROI on its marketing spending. That’s 75.69% above the benchmark.Case Study: GoConvert vs. Traditional Digital
in Real Time vs. Traditional Digital
Curious about how the GoConvert customer network is currently performing against traditional digital benchmarks? Review the real-time data below.
|CPM ?Cost Per 1k Impressions||$25 ?Agency Rate|
|CTR ?Click Through Rate||2.27%|
|CPC ?Cost Per Click||$1.46|
|RCR ?Relationship Conversion Rate||4.63% ?Lead Conversion Rate|
|CPR ?Cost Per Relationship||$119.34 ?CPL|
|IGRCR ?Income-Generating Relationship Conversion Rate||3.43% ?Digital Win/Close Rate|
|ROI ?For every dollar I spend, how many will I get back?||3.62x|
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