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Website Localization

Localization_site.jpgBoost your Sales with Localization

According to the Common Sense Advisory, a translated website is one of the key factors that influence sales. Fewer than 20% of people are willing to make a purchase in a language they don’t understand. The more technically complex the product, the more important it is to translate the relevant information in order to make the sale. If you want to sell a dress or some beads on Ebay, a machine translation is enough (especially if you've uploaded a photograph and a sizing guide). A washing machine, however, requires a more in-depth and coherent description of its technical specifications in the target language. In other words, website localization will boost your sales!

Localization is a lot more than just a translation

  • Adaptation of marketing texts taking into account the specific features and mentality of the target market and, if necessary, replacing photos and images.
  • Translation of text in artwork, including redrawing text within images selecting the right font to do so, and redrawing flash assets.
  • Internationalization: changing code pages and language tags, changing date formats, translating metres to foot and vice versa.
  • Modelling: Reforming the page layout in accordance with a right-to-left writing system, or extending text fields (i.e. when translating a text from Chinese, it may double or triple in length).

The sooner the better

It makes sense to localize text before it will even be posted on your website. Of course, we know how to work with HTML-texts while fully retaining all the tags, but it is better to upload pre-translated content onto your website. If you use a content management system (a CMS such as Drupal), it should be incorporated into the translation process. Most importantly, it should be used before one text element (such as the menu bar, or brief terms of use) start to copy themselves across dozens of pages. For small projects this doesn't matter so much but for sites with a few hundred pages, the process will be much more manageable if the "header" that is repeated on every page is entered into the localized part in a standardised form.

Linguistic and functional testing

A necessary and oft overlooked part of the localization process, testing ensures that all the pages open correctly, all links direct to the right page, makes sure that your page displays the correct font - not just a strange load of symbols, and the formatting and translation is in line with the context. Testing is the final stage of transforming the translated text into a fully localized product.

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