Common Localization Mistakes to Avoid for a Hassle-free Global Launch

Global expansion is a great option, but it’s not without its fair share of challenges. One such challenge is localization. When expanding your online presence beyond borders, you must maintain consistency within all aspects of your business. The language on your website must be translated, and the layout needs to be altered to fit the local market. Follow these tips to keep everything running smoothly; in other words, avoid making localization mistakes.

Considering Spaces

One common localization mistake is the omission of spaces. Not only does it look unprofessional, but without a space before an ampersand (&), search engines may misread its meaning. Yes, a million more spaces are being used instead of half as many. However, this helps ensure that your website loads quickly and is optimized for mobile users.

Use of Idioms

The first pitfall to avoid is the use of completely unidiomatic expressions. These are generally more common in writing than in spoken language but crop up regularly. A clear example is “I need it by tomorrow’s morning”, which sounds jarring when translated into Chinese. It would be better to say “the morning of tomorrow” so that the translator will move on immediately to the next sentence and not have time to question why you chose such a strange way to express yourself.

Use of Images and Lots of Content

This is the biggest localization mistake that companies make. When you include images with lots of text content, the net result will be a cluttered UI, which can cause users to feel overwhelmed and confused. Also, it’s been shown that users prefer larger fonts in their native language, so using smaller font sizes may diminish the reading experience.

Only Using One Language

A global launch may be a good idea, especially since current market trends show a surge in demand for products and services that can be offered in different languages. But if you still keep your content in the English language only, then you will not be able to reach out to other global markets.

Not Using Unicode

Have you ever wondered why your app’s logo looks different from other versions of the same app? Or why do users sometimes receive a “Cannot Connect” error when installing your app? These are instances where Unicode could have been used to enable your users to install the same app in any country.

In the digital age, no matter where your audience is located, their language is likely to be supported by Unicode—the standard for international software development. Unicode covers over 100 writing systems, providing a single method to translate, store, and display all human languages. Technology becomes more important with every product launch. If you are not currently using Unicode, start now!

Not Changing Payment Methods

It is a big mistake if you do not change the payment modes per your customers’ countries. For example, you may charge in pounds in the UK; but exchange rates might differ in different countries. Customers who use their local currency instead of foreign currencies will feel more comfortable with the purchase process.

In Summary

Although localization is a big part of ensuring the success of mobile apps for businesses, it’s easy to make some crucial mistakes. By avoiding the common pitfalls outlined above, you can eliminate many challenges other companies may face when going through localization.

Are you looking for savvy localization and translation services? Contact us today!