See what we did there? We wrote localisation instead of localization. Does that make any difference? Search engines will recognize these words with en_US - en_UK spelling as the words with the same meaning. But in terms of grammar, semantic indexing, and user experience, the tolerance sinks. So, software localization is a painstaking process, even if we talk about the English language for different regions. Minor issues may go unnoticed, so we have again brought them to our audience's attention.

English isn't English

Not only will US-American users find it slightly weird to stumble upon distinctly British terms or spelling conventions constantly, but it might even confuse them. There is a reason the first Harry Potter book has a different title on the other side of the Atlantic Ocean.

"Harry Potter and the Philosopher's Stone" in the UK

"Harry Potter and the Sorcerer's Stone" in the USA

The possible reason for such a change is that the "philosopher's stone" is not a popular idiom in American culture, and the readers will not understand the mystical connotations.

English is not the only language, however, where disregarding the finer linguistic differences can make you look bad. The same goes for Spanish (Latin-American versus European Spanish, or more distinctly, taking into account local varieties on both continents), Chinese (simple, traditional, Taiwanese...), Portuguese (Portal, Brazil, former colonies), or even German (Germany, Austria, Switzerland, we've covered some examples previously) and a few others. You'd be surprised how sensitive consumers are in our globalized world regarding patriotism and cultural pride.

What's mobile?

Today, more than 50% of web traffic comes from mobile. Smartphones have become an essential part of everyday life, and in most cases, software is developed for a variety of devices or has versions for most other devices. Consider the mobile version at the starting point of any product development, even if you are not ready to launch it. This advice will save you a lot of time, money, and nerves when creating and localizing the mobile version. Have a strategy ready in the early stages of your product on how you will accomplish two things:

a) reach all platforms with little additional cost of (re)development and

b) streamline internationalization and localization across all of them.

Suppose you don't think about this at the beginning. In that case, you will localize completely separate products later, multiplying your overhead costs to the unbearable - even though the product is the same.

Consider the human factor

Language is complex, and translation demands expertise, cultural sensitivity, human comprehension, and contextual knowledge. It requires top-notch quality above all. The users of your localized product should feel that they can "trust it" and that the company shows respect by following cultural and language nuances.

Internationalization of your code, professional translation, quality testing, etc., are all part of successful localization and, as a result, the product value on the market. To prevent possible issues, build the strategy and talk to a localization specialist early in your product cycle. These things will be too important to ignore.

How can Lingohub help businesses with software localization?

project progress

The correct tool can significantly change the localization experience. At Lingohub, we have developed and relentlessly improved (and improving) our application precisely for this purpose. With Lingohub, you can:

  • Simply manage various languages (pluricentric as well) and dialects.
  • Work with different file formats, as Lingohub supports over 30 types.
  • Localize for iOS and Android simultaneously. = Create the localization process and in-built it in your CI/CD.

Lingohub is a complex tool that provides a comprehensive overview of the localization process - from project progress workflow to financial reports and translation orders. Read in detail about our main features or schedule a quick demo call with the Lingohub team. Stay tune!

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