App localization is not just the process of translating mobile apps or web content but also involves localizing them for other currencies, dates, times and numbers formats. However, when dealing with application localizations, we can't overlook the fact that there are certain issues such as misalignment of texts, lack of regional elements, gibberish text strings generation, and inappropriate usage of emojis and characters which can severely hamper the user experience.
App localization is recognized as an essential area of marketing that is pivotal in growing one's brand. As technological advances allow for mobile devices to reach into the lives of more and more people around the world, localization has become an even greater factor for businesses looking to increase their customer base.
What is app localization?
App localization is the process of adapting a mobile app to meet specific language, cultural and other requirements of its intended market.
App localization is the process of adapting an app to meet the requirements of users in a particular market. App localization involves translating or transcribing text, modifying graphics and UI elements, and adding local-specific features that reflect cultural differences.
App localization is often confused with globalization — the process of creating a single version of an app that can be sold in multiple markets — although they are different. Globalization refers only to the creation of one version of an app that can be used by people around the world, while app localization focuses on tailoring an existing product for each specific market.
Why should you localize your app?
Most mobile app developers are familiar with the concept of localization, but many still don't understand why it's important.
Localizing your app can help you reach new markets and improve user experience. It is also a good way of increasing downloads as well as user engagement and retention. Here are some key reasons why you should localize your app:
Increase Your App Downloads
By translating your app into other languages, you can increase your downloads. The global market for mobile apps is growing rapidly, and increasing numbers of people are using mobile devices in their native languages. Localizing your app into multiple languages can help you reach out to this growing international audience.
Reach new markets.
A product that's localized for a particular language and region is more likely to be used by consumers in that country. A study by Google and Boston Consulting Group shows that localizing your app can increase revenue by 25 percent.
If you're targeting a specific market with your app, localization will help users relate to it more easily. Localizing your app means that you'll be able to communicate better with your target audience because you'll know more about their culture — how they socialize, what they like to do and where they spend their time.
Improve customer service.
By understanding cultural differences between countries, companies have an opportunity to improve customer service by offering different support options based on those differences. For example, if someone in another country calls with a problem while speaking with someone who doesn't understand their accent or dialect, they may become frustrated quickly.
Give App Users a Personalized UX
One of the biggest benefits of localization is that it makes your app feel more personal and relatable to users. Localizing your app can help you connect with users in ways that you wouldn’t be able to otherwise. The more familiar they feel with your brand and product, the more likely they are to trust you, which ultimately results in them becoming repeat customers. After all, no one wants to do business with someone who doesn’t understand them or speak their language.
Boost Your Revenue
The other major benefit of localization is that it can help boost your revenue. If you want to make more money, then localizing your app is a must! This is because localized apps tend to perform better than their non-localized counterparts, especially when it comes to making purchases within the app. So if you want people to buy things, then you need them to feel comfortable using your product first.
Common App Localization Challenges
Localization is one of the most challenging aspects of global marketing because it requires extensive knowledge of languages, cultures, social norms and other factors that are specific to certain regions.
You need to translate all your text into the local language of your target market. This can be a huge task and will require hiring a professional translation service or outsourcing to someone who understands both languages.
Localization is not just about language — it’s also about culture. How do you address people from different countries? What words do they use? What is their attitude? In order to localize your app effectively, you need to understand how people from different cultures talk, think and behave.
In addition to cultural differences, there are also technical challenges associated with localization such as font size and character encoding issues. Different languages have different letter combinations which can affect how your text displays on screen or how it looks on mobile devices where there may be limited space available for displaying text .
Top tips for a successful Localization Campaign
Think beyond translation.
Localization means more than just translating the text in your app into another language — it also means making sure that you account for cultural differences, such as names or dates being written differently from one country to another. You also need to consider things like currency symbols or units of measure (kilometers vs miles).
Remember name order can change.
Different languages use different orders for first names and last names, which can change how an address reads or what information is displayed on a business card. If you’re creating forms that users enter data into, make sure they can enter their information in the right format so that it will be displayed correctly in their native language.
Don’t embed text in images
Images are a great way to add visual interest to your app, but they can also be problematic if you want to localize it. Text embedded in images can’t be changed easily or quickly, so it may need to be removed altogether if the translation requires changing. If you use text in images, try to keep the length short and make sure there are no special characters that might cause problems when changing languages.
Localization testing is a must
To ensure that your product is effective in various regions, you should conduct app localization testing before launching your product. This will help you identify any issues with the translation or formatting of your app before it reaches the market. The goal of localization testing is not only to check if the content within your app is grammatically correct but also to ensure that it reads well without losing its original meaning.
We hope that you've found this guide to app localization useful. Remember, the potential users of your app are all over the world, so it's important to make sure as many people can use your app as possible. While you may think that this only means translating your app into other languages, there's a lot more to it than that. If you want to achieve an optimal translation process, it's best to leave it up to professionals who know what they're doing and can provide you with quality translations.
At PoliLingua we specialize in translating mobile apps and know everything there is to know about localizing mobile apps in order to reach the greatest audience possible. Feel free to get in touch with us if you want help with your app localization project-you won't regret it.