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Localization – Transcreation, Website, Software, and Mobile Apps

Different aspects of website localization - Transcend Translation

The localization industry has experienced significant growth in recent years. The industry’s revenue increased by $5 billion within the last two years. Its largest and second-largest markets are Europe and North America, respectively. 

The reason for its rapid growth is the massive surge in demand for localization services by various brands. For these companies to effectively reach their target audience/market, they don’t just have to translate content but localize it, too.

Localization services come in various forms – transcreation, website, software, and mobile app translation. Let’s look at these services, what they entail, and how they impact businesses trying to become global.

Transcreation

As the name implies, this process is a hybrid of translation and creation. It entails the conversion of text from its original language to a target language while making the content relevant and coherent. Transcreation goes beyond the translation of words; it extends to nuances and expressions native to the target market you’re translating for. This process involves some creativity because it’s not carried out word-for-word, but it sticks to the concept and message of the original content.

Transcreation involves the adjustment of figures of speech, the addition of certain idioms and expressions, as well as the adaptation of words to fit the needs of the target market. This service offers businesses several benefits, including attracting customers from new markets, enhancing their global visibility and brand awareness, demonstrating multicultural awareness, and showing signs of expansion to their existing clientele. It’s one of the best options for effectively communicating a brand’s message to foreign markets with the same level of excellence as they do on the homefront.

Brands have various reasons for transcreating content. For some brands, the goal is to enhance their SEO in target markets, while for others, it may be to increase brand awareness in these regions. The brand’s brief is analyzed by professional trans-creators to get a grasp of the company’s potential in the target market, then give an evaluation report on whether the brand’s goals can be achieved or not. If it’s the case of the latter, these professionals will then inform the company about what’s achievable. 

Website Localization

In this age, nearly every brand has a website, which is a necessary platform for creating and strengthening its online presence. Localizing a website’s content entails adapting the content on the web pages to the cultural and linguistic context of the brand’s target audience. In simple terms, the brand hires professional translators to convert the website’s message to the local culture and language of the country or region the company wants to expand into or sell to.

Unlike website translation, which covers just the textual and video content on the site, localizing the website’s content involves the adaptation of images, text, video, audio, and site requirements, as well as the format and design to a particular linguistic and cultural preference. The beauty of this service is that it does all these while maintaining the core message and brand of the company’s website. Localized websites will draw more traffic because site visitors in the targeted audience need less time to process the information – they relate to the content almost instantly. A foreign brand suddenly appears like a local brand in the neighborhood. 

Software Localization

Localizing software is a practice that started recently and has gained a lot of traction. Imagine trying to set up, configure or navigate software in a foreign language. The experience can leave you clueless and frustrated. Funny enough, your problems don’t go away when you manage to translate the textual content on the software because you’ll still have to battle with a foreign design and complicated instructions. 

Localizing software solves the problems mentioned above by adapting the tool to the linguistic and cultural context of the target market. This covers modification of the graphic design, user experience, video content, and measurement standards to fit the local context of the target market.

Mobile App Localization

This is very similar to localized software. After all, mobile applications are software designed for use on mobile devices exclusively. Just like localized software, a localized mobile application goes beyond the conversion of the content to a target language. It involves the adaptation of the user interface and the functionality of the app to the target language and culture, while maintaining the original function and intent of the application. 

Conclusion

A similar process to that of software localization. It’s not something you can achieve with machine translation or tools such as Google Translate because it requires profound human input to adapt source content to the targeted culture and language adequately. For this reason, brands will require the services of professional translators and linguists to achieve this.