Today we were talking to Jodie Chan from Chinafy, a SaaS-based platform that gets websites working in China.
The Idea behind Chinafy:
The answer to a simple question, “why doesn’t my website work in China ” had a technically nuanced answer, which we felt well-positioned able to address. Our parent company is a HK-based tech-firm with years of experience in launching Enterprise-scale platforms and regular interactions with a wide range of cross-border companies globally. As a result, Chinafy organically became a leading resource for companies who faced that challenge of digitally entering the Chinese market and one that was also familiar with a range of industry requirements.
What is Chinafy:
Chinafy is a China web optimization solution that specializes in China Web Compatibility. What that means is that our platform identifies the technical issues that cause a website to load slowly in China (if at all), and generate best practice solutions in a relatively automated way. Our expert developers go the extra mile by adapting to custom enterprise needs, and we’re able to holistically fill the gap that CDNs and hosting providers don’t fill when it comes to China.
The platform’s offering is niche but effective, and addresses a gap that no other player on the market specializes in. Because we’ve essentially created and led the China Website Compatibility space, our product has allowed us to be a complementary solution and official partner to a number of established platforms out there – including but not limited to, Alibaba Cloud, Microsoft Azure, Google Cloud, ChinaCache and more.
How does the Chinafy product look and feel?
You can treat our product almost like an add-on to your website. Here’s how it works: We first scan a website and generate a “China-version” of your existing website (it is not a mirror or a duplicate ). We then make necessary replacements on that version of your website so that it can perform fast, and completely for visitors in China. China, which might not work well with the “global version” used for the technical setup outside China. This is because what works well ‘globally’ doesn’t always work well in China, and vice versa. By using Chinafy, organizations also prevent the need to create and manage two different websites entirely and then managing two different websites.
What about the end users? What website will they see?
The look and feel of the website will be similar to how the website is originally. The mechanism that directs the end user to the right version is based on their IP address. This means that If the IP is from China, then they will be sent to the Chinafy version of the site. If it’s from elsewhere, then they would go back to the original, global, non-China version of the website. Most users won’t actually notice anything different as the idea really is that visitors can experience website as intended, no matter where they are coming from – including China.
About ICP License: Chinafy is first and foremost, a web optimization platform that addresses components of a website so that it performs the best way possible for visitors inside and outside of China. The ICP is a license that is required for any hosting to occur within the Mainland. It’s important to recognize these are two separate things. Chinafy can bolt onto websites that are either hosted inside or outside of China and simply will configure the correct stack. For example, if a website has an ICP license, they can then leverage onshore nodes. Whereas a website without an ICP license can be hosted offshore, but then bolt on Chinafy to improve its performance irrespective – achieving virtually onshore performance.
How does Chinafy sees its competition?
Interestingly enough, we don’t have any direct competition. If we had to pick what we’re compared to most often, we’d have to say content delivery networks (CDNs) simply because they’re in the web optimisation space. However, we’re actually partnered with a lot of Tier 1 CDNs precisely because our services compliment each other well. CDNs are really good at accelerating content that’s on the primary domain and on the Network to Presentation layer. However, China is unique in that a large portion of the friction in performance comes from “third party domains’ ‘ that are numerous, constantly evolving, and incredibly difficult for individual developers to manage on the Application Layer. Not to forget, this scale of inaccessible or excessively slow third-party resources really is a unique China phenomena. Both CDNs and hosting in China doesn’t resolve these issues. That’s where Chinafy is uniquely able to add value to any technical stack. Because what we do is so specialized and requires both economies of scale and notable technical investment, the value-add allows us to collaborate well with a lot of different companies, CMS providers, agencies and so-called “competition”. The more websites we get to address, the better our product gets. The more people we collaborate with, the more our shared users win in China.
Have more questions for Chinafy? Contact them directly!
HI-COM is a digital marketing agency dedicated to providing China-specific strategy, social media communication and e-commerce marketing services to businesses around the world. Working with more than 100 brands, HI-COM is the go-to partner of companies that want to enter the China market! Contact us for your free consultation today!
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