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Why is mobile app localization is important?

January 27 , 2022

Why is mobile app localization is important?

by Target Language Translation Services

- January 27 2022

mobile app localization

Tailoring your app’s interface to satisfying varying cultural and language expectations is a must. Users want to feel that the apps they download are created natively for them, and having obviously incorrect terminology or culturally insensitive content is a huge turn-off.

About App Localization

App localization is the process of changing and refining an app to appeal to a geographically specific target market. You want to make sure that your app is as appealing and easy to use outside your headquarters’ country as it is within.

Though translating the language of your app is a huge part of this, there are also cultural rules and preferences that are more difficult to pin down. Certain symbols or gestures may be innocuous in the U.S., but could actually be very offensive in another country. Regardless, these can be huge factors in the success of your app abroad.

App localization enables your app to meet the needs of users who speak other languages so that everything from units of measurement to currencies and idiomatic expressions are optimized for them.

By ensuring that your app is appealing to users in a wide variety of locations around the world, you will receive:

Access to a global market

More than half of the world’s mobile subscribers are located in Asia/Pacific. If you launch your app in one language only, your visibility will be greatly reduced in foreign markets.

Unlimited sales

The number of mobile phone subscribers globally is set to reach 4.77 billion by 2017. That’s a pretty big potential market for your app.

A worldwide hit

90% of activity on mobile devices occurs in apps these days, (rather than browsers.) But the majority of apps are downloaded and deleted in minutes. Optimum localization of your app has never been so important.

And many more...

Mobile app localization is essential if you want to conquer foreign markets.

Some Tips for App Localization

Avoid Using Free Online Translation Tools

When we want something translated our first port of call is something like Google Translate. Whilst this works if you’re deciding what to order from a French menu, it will be disastrous for your app. Whilst it might be tempting, especially if time or budgets are tight, it will end up costing you more of both in the long run.

As well as ending up with poor translations that at best won’t connect with your target audience and at worst won’t make sense, there are other issues to consider such as security. By employing an expert you pay once, it’s done quickly and all of your information will be completely secure.

Notice Cultural Differences

Differences in language and cultural norms are hard to navigate if you aren’t an expert and problems that occur aren’t always down to poorly translated text. Whilst some mistakes will cause little more than mild amusement, others can be very serious. For instance, the flag of Saudi Arabia has text from the Quran on it and displaying it the wrong way round is illegal. Another example is a Volkswagen campaign promoting the power of their vehicles that was launched in the United States with the slogan “White Power” attached. What has innocent connotations in one country may not be the same in another. A properly localized campaign stops these errors from happening.

Design of the App

Text in some languages, for example Arabic or Hebrew, are read from right-to-left instead of left-to-right. Think about how this will work when added to your app – will the design still work? A localization expert will bear this in mind from the very beginning, ensuring that the design of the app is such that it can cope with different types of text. If you’re relying on free translation, aside from the other problems noted above, this is where you can quickly become unstuck and may need to redesign your app from scratch.

Following on from text layout, it’s also important to consider how much space different languages need: for instance, Spanish or German text can take up to 30% more space than English. Avoiding fixed widths and heights for text elements in your app will help get this right, or you could go the extra mile and create custom layouts for each localization.

This article is reprinted from Clever Tap, MEMSOURCE and Brightlines Translation.

If there is a copyright, please inform us in time, we will delete it right the first time.

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