Localization or Localisation involves not only translation but also observing and imparting local linguistic styles, formatting styles and conventions. If you need to globalize your software, website, product line, commercial or any other media, in order for your project to be effective in a foreign environment, it is essential that it appears local to your target market. Unlike the simple translation of the text of a site into the target language, localization is a way of integrating the whole of the site cohesively into the language and culture of the target group.
This consists of adapting software to a country or market other than that for which it was initially designed. The process of localisation therefore takes into consideration, not only the relevance of the information, especially in cultural terms, but also includes the technical and functional adaptation of the product for the target market, along with ensuring that it conforms to the regulations in force in the target country.
Software localisation essentially relates to a product’s three basic components, the user interface, online help and documentation. Our teams also localize software component for hardware products, such as printers, scanners, video cards, digital cameras and sound cards.
Localization refers to the entire process of adapting a product in order to market it in a given geographical area. In the case of IT localisation, this means translating the strings in the program into the target language as a minimum. These strings are scrupulously integrated into the software so their real context is frequently unclear until they appear in the program being executed. So IT localization is not simply a linguistic challenge about HTML Code translations, but also a technical and logistical one.
The usual questions related to a localization project are:
- What must actually be translated and how much is there?
- Do we have all the software strings to be translated?
- What is the context of the source text?
- Are there any images to be localised?
- Are the menus and dialogue boxes readable after translation?
- Does the software run correctly after translation?
- How is the consistency of the translation ensured between the software and documentation?
The use of CAT tools enables us to respond in part to these questions.
The translation and localization of websites enables information to be adapted to the linguistic, cultural and commercial requirements of a target geographical area. By having your website translated, you enable users to access information relating your company quickly and easily. If your clients, partners and employees can communicate more effectively with you, your marketing costs decrease and your business results increase.
According to a recent study conducted by Common Sense Advisory, the majority of people questioned said that they prefer using their own language and favour business with online suppliers who speak this language. Out of the 2,930 people asked, 70% prefer to access websites in their native language and 49% state that they prefer localized content rather than English.
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