Localization

Localization for Greek and German users

Localization (L10n) goes beyond translation. The end user of the localized software or website should not feel that it was originally designed and created in another language; it should integrate seamlessly and provide a natural and intuitive user experience (UX). Several software and website elements must be adapted to the target user’s language to achieve this result. Some of these elements are:

  • Abbreviations;
  • Currency, measurement units, date and time, and number format;
  • Spelling and terminology;
  • Symbols, icons, hand gestures, signage, and fonts;
  • User interface (UI), including menus, buttons, labels, error messages, system prompts, and layout.

Furthermore, for software localization, the following will also require adaptation to the target language:

  • Help files and documentation;
  • Legal and regulatory information;
  • Keyboard shortcuts.

For website localization, the following requires adaptation to the target language as well:

  • Legal information (terms and conditions, privacy policy, etc.);
  • Pictures (alternative text, description, caption, etc.);
  • SEO (keywords, meta titles, meta descriptions, etc.);
  • Shipping information, shipping cost, prices and taxes (for e-commerce);
  • Transactional and marketing emails.

Of course, the above lists are not exhaustive, and additional steps may be necessary. One inevitable step is to test everything before launching.

Localization examples

Software localization example

Below, you may see a localization example from Microsoft to understand what localization is about. The example screenshot is the same in US English, German, French, and Greek. As you can see, text, buttons, and links are localized into the respective language.

English

US English Microsoft example screenshot "Accept the license agreement".

French

US English Microsoft example screenshot "Accept the license agreement".

German

US English Microsoft example screenshot "Accept the license agreement".

Greek

US English Microsoft example screenshot "Accept the license agreement".

Website localization example

Website localization is very similar to software localization since it also involves code. The example below shows the same homepage in English, French, Italian, and Greek (although Haribo is a German company).

You will notice that the English and Greek screenshots are similar but have different slogans (transcreation), while the French and Italian screenshots feature entirely different products than the other two screenshots. In addition, the menus are not the same in all languages.

English

A screenshot from the Haribo homepage localized into UK English.

French

A screenshot from the Haribo homepage localized into UK English.

Greek

A screenshot from the Haribo homepage localized into UK English.

Italian

A screenshot from the Haribo homepage localized into UK English.

Note: All logos, trademarks and copyrights in the above examples belong to their owners. Any third-party images or screenshots are used for illustrative purposes only.

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