Congratulations! You’ve developed a helpful software and now thousands of people can use it every day. But wouldn’t it be great if you could turn those thousands into millions? Of course, it would. The approach most of the IT companies take is going global with their software and applications. There are no boundaries in the digital world, why should there be any in the real one? That is why your business should enter new markets and seek new clients. That’s where IT localization will become the essential part of your business strategy. And there are some things you need to take into account.
Localization Is More Than Translation
The goal of any localization process is to adapt your service or product to the needs of an individual target market. Before you start asking a translator to help you, make sure you are aware of all the essential details of the local culture, limitations your business can face and your possible competitors. This information will help you build the right and appealing message for the target audience.
In terms of IT localization, make sure that the need your software fulfills actually exists on this particular market. Maybe, there are some local alternatives. Or it’s not the right time to enter the market as the country has not reached the required level of development yet. Take all of these factors into consideration.
Foreign Words Take a lot of Space
Keep in mind that while your text might look nice and short in English, it can take much more space in a different language. Think in advance about the ways to overcome this difficulty – leaving enough space or programming dynamic UI expansion.
To translate or not to translate
As English remains to be the main language of the IT specialists, most of the term are used and understood worldwide. So, should you translate them as well or not? There is no certain answer for that as you should be aimed at making your software understandable. If some of the English terms are appropriate and popular among the target audience, you might leave them without translation.
A thorough analysis of competitors is something you can’t ignore. Besides trying to find out their strong points, think about something they lack. Does your software have a better function or work with the higher speed? It’s rather risky to launch something having no advantages over the leaders of the market. After you’ve done that, make the necessary alterations to your software.
Don’t forget about this category of users. People can also visit your site using a smartphone so make sure it downloads properly and functions the way it should. Otherwise, you’ll lose a considerable part of the probable customers.
Creating an account in a local language or within the local social network is a smart step for any business entering a foreign market. You have to show your presence and communicate with locals. This account can be used as the fastest way for your customer to contact you and find the answer to his questions. So, if you have the opportunity to be present there, do so.
Not only our technology develops with the course of time, or language does as well. The expressions and terms you use today can become outdated within a few years from now. Check the texts you use and keep an eye on their relevance.
Testing your software
After you’ve done the greater part of the work and your software is almost ready, don’t forget to test it. Just as the original version needs testing, so does the localized one.
Use Unicode/UTF-8 encoding for your software resources if you want to save time on conversion. Taking this simple step can increase the speed of localization process immensely.