App localization is a key feature for any company who are hoping to internationalise their product. This article is going to explore just this: the importance if app localization.

Localizing your app can be a driver for business, and could be the tipping factor to see bigger growth. Moreover, it is something that can be done relatively cheaply. The cost of localization is often far smaller than the potential of the markets it can open up.

What is an App Localization?

App localization is the process of changing and refining an app in order to appeal to a geographically specific target market. When people use an app, they want it to feel like it has been designed just for them. If it is in a language they cannot quickly understand, then it presents an instant issue. Localizing an app will make your users more loyal, will allow them to understand your app better and will thus therefore be more likely to leave a good review.

The Intricacies of Translation for Localization

Effective translation is a key part of the importance of app localization. Firstly, it is important to check where the majority of your users are. Localizing into big markets often makes more sense- languages like Spanish, French, Portuguese or Japanese entail large markets. To translate, and localise, your app effectively, then a detailed knowledge of not only the language but also the culture is essential.

The most important things

Firstly, everything in the translation needs to be optimised for the target audience. Measurements, currencies, punctuation and idiomatic expressions require careful translation. It is due to these nuances that that an online translator cannot be used. An expert is needed! For example, there are idiomatic phrases that, if literally translated, would make no sense. The Spanish phrase “Estar más sano que un pera” literally translates to “to be healthier than a pear”. This, of course, is nonsensical. The English translation would be “to be as fit as a fiddle”, which when directly translated into Spanish equally makes no sense!

This same problem occurs with symbols and gestures. In the modern era of emojis and emoticons, language has become a more visual medium. But they can be interpreted differently! For example, the “ok” sign (with the thumb and forefinger making an ‘o’ and the other fingers help up) in the UK or US is very neutral. In Japan, it stands for “money”. However, in Venezuela and Turkey it implies that someone is a homosexual, whilst in Brazil it is an office gesture. Avoiding anything offensive as you localise is essential! If you’d like to learn more about the meaning of hand gestures in different cultures, we recommend this Bright Side article.

What are the interests of people?

Finally, it is important to understand local interests and trends to properly localise. Request feedback from users and consult with local experts. Local legal laws must also be taken into account!

We hope you found this article on the importance of app localization interesting. If you are looking for help in translating an app, at iTrad Traducciones our sworn translators are experts in a wide array of fields. If you’d like to find out more about how we could help localise your website, then don’t hesitate to contact us at!

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