It was a long time ago when it was enough for your website to work perfectly on a desktop. Today, you have to carefully adjust it for mobile, as well as all other devices, if you don’t want to lose the interest of a great portion of users.
Most creators are aware of this fact and consider code and design translation as very important for the overall UX of their products.
Interestingly enough, not all of them find the actual translation of their product content into the language of the auditorium they’re addressing to be equally important. But it is, as well as the cultural references are.
English might be considered to be universally understandable. But, if you want to get full attention and credit in a non-English speaking area, the good way to go is to literally speak in their language.
Here are a few tips on how to make this process easier and not loose precious customers due to ‘lost in translation’ effect:
Quick and dirty translation – big no-no
The internet is full of hilarious examples of lousy translation attempts.
Even though Google Translate is getting better every day, it is still far away from being completely reliable.
The thing is, it is usually more beneficial for your business not to translate its product content at all than to fail in it. Getting user’s attention is pretty hard anyways. Once you do get it, you better make sure your message is clear and understandable.
Stay professional – hire a translator
In order to make sure you’re going to sell your service instead of making people burst into laughter because of it, you should make sure to translate its content properly. To do this, you’ll need a professional translator.
Actually, if you take the task of finding a good translator seriously, you’re likely to get much more out of your cooperation than just getting text translated. Namely, professional translators are usually acquainted with the cultural and contextual references which can help you to ‘translate’ your design as well as the words. (This might be especially important for Asian and Arabic parts of the world.)
Make the most out of translation process
Since the textual translation of the product is usually short term project, you cooperation with translator will probably be a virtual one. In order to make this collaboration more fruitful and natural, a lot of services are available. Some of them you might want to take in account are: Transifex, Locale or Localizejs
For example, when we’re translating UsabilitySquare, our platform for getting totally free and unbiased feedback, we used OneSky. The good thing about it was that enabled us to contextualize every line of the text by accompanying it with the appropriate attachment of the specified website scene. Due to good pre-organization, and getting all the ‘lines’ and ‘scenes’ ready before starting the translation process, we managed to get our Danish translation before the trial version expired.
If you want to get closer to users and make them feel comfortable while using your product, you should adapt it to their needs. Good user experience requires localization of your product, and this stands equally for different platforms as well as different cultures.