What is Website Localisation and Why Is It Important?
These days many businesses are pursuing a global presence and this is achieved by making the website appealing and easily understood by the targeted audience. It is not a matter of loading the website online in a multitude of languages but getting it localised first is equally important.
Customising a website to suit the language and culture of the targeted language is called localisation. Translation is all about changing the content and the words on a document from one language into another while website localization is all about customising features of a website including its written content so that it will appeal to certain cultural groups. Translation is the first step of website localisation.
If you are a genuine localisation company that wishes to enter an overseas market there may be documents that need to be drawn up such as agreements, contracts and terms of service. Each of these might need to be localised so that they comply with all local regulations and can be understood by the recipients. Messages embedded in marketing material might also require adjustments to suit the culture of the market. Spacing might be a key issue in marketing materials but as some languages take up more space than others it is important to adjust and localise this content so it puts across the desired message about the product you wish to market.
Website localisation is important because it boosts customers’ experience which helps a company to reach its sales targets.
How to localise a website
Your website most likely contains all sorts of content and articles about your product but you have to choose what you would like localised for your targeted overseas audience. If you want your targeted audience to be influenced into buying your product you will need to translate and localise the content on your website that potential customers are most likely to read. However, there may be some features you will not need to localise such as job opportunities as they will not be relevant to your targeted overseas audience.
The role of website localisation services
There is no easy solution to translating and localising a website for an overseas market. You can’t depend on robot translators like Google Translate. They don’t know how to translate idiomatic language that is so often part of a product marketing campaign. You need a professional localisation translation services which employs translators who aren’t just fluent in two languages but understand the cultural context of their two language groups. This means they can efficiently translate idiomatic marketing material from one language to another and localise it at the same time.
An experienced translator knows about key features of both languages such as the direction of the text as there are some that go from right-to-left not left-to-right. You have no guarantee that Google translate would understand this feature.
How to pick a website localisation services
- First and foremost you should ensure the service company you choose has qualified translators, multilingual copywriters, web design experts and designers.
- The localisation services offers a fair turnaround time.
- Check if there is some sort of robust quality control present so that errors in the translation and localisation process don’t take place.
- Having the best technology in use speeds up the translation and localisation process. Technology can never replace human translators but features like translation memories help the translators to maintain consistency when performing translations for the same company. Combining this with great human post-editing reduces costs and turnaround times.
- Getting the best price isn’t necessarily the best move as quality shouldn’t be compromised which can happen if the cheapest localisation services are chosen.