Translation and Web Design 

Nowadays, a company’s website is an essential element of their business operation and global reach. The days of paper-based advertising are rapidly fading out, and business cards, catalogues, brochures and portfolios are all brought into one digital space on a website. In some cases, websites even replace a physical store, as products and services are offered online. Globalisation through the internet means that more and more texts are in need of translation, and translation begins to play an indispensable role in the marketing industry. This post will briefly discuss translation and web design in terms of a process called localisation. It will explain what this entails, why companies should consider it and how it is carried out.

What is localisation?

Localization involves translation as part of the globalization process, making digital texts available in other languages. It very often involves the translation of websites, but can be used for any type of multimedia or digital content. The purpose is to adapt a product to a local market, taking into account the audience’s culture and linguistic varieties such as dialects and slang. It could almost be defined as the re-marketing of a product.

Why localisation should be considered by companies?

It allows companies to connect with their audience in a new target culture and cater to their preferences, humour and consumption habits, as well as avoid any taboos or sensitivities in the target culture that could have disastrous results if overlooked.

How is localisation carried out?

Similar to the way in which subtitling, for example, incorporates new considerations into the translation process, localization also comprises much more than just the linguistic aspect of translation. Translation is only one of the stages. The process involves the translators, localisers and development engineers working together.

As well as content, it may include:

  • Images and graphics
  • The layout according to the target text (text can become longer or shorter in different languages)
  • Local legislation
  • Local measurements, currencies and formats

Below are some examples of Nescafé’s website in different countries:

Spain:

China:

The USA:

If you are thinking of expanding your business internationally and entering new markets, make sure you consider working with experts in order to correctly and efficiently translate and localize your website. If you have any interesting examples of successful, or even non-successful, localization attempts, comment below or tweet us @lexgotranslations

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