What is localization?

  • The Art of Localization: Going Beyond Translation

    Localization generally refers to a more comprehensive process than language translation. Translation is simply the translation of texts from one language to another. Localization is the process of making the translation suitable for the language, traditions, habits and expectations of the target culture.

    Localization goes beyond just vocabulary and grammar. It also includes elements such as visual elements, symbols, colors, local calendars and cultural references. This aims for a more effective and meaningful communication to the target audience.

    For example, localizing a product's advertisement is not just about translating the text. At the same time, it adapts the images, colors and tone of language used in the advertisement to the expectations and norms of the target culture. Thus, it helps a product or service to be adopted more effectively in global markets.

    The Importance of Going Beyond Translation in Global Communication

    Localization is one of the key elements of effective communication and success in global markets. The reasons behind this are as follows:

    1. Being Aware of Cultural Diversity

    Effective companies in the global world have to interact with different cultures. Basic translation can break down language barriers. However, it may not fully meet the unique expectations of these cultures. This is where localization comes into play. In other words, a step is taken beyond translation and the messages become more understandable.

    2. Improved Customer Experience

    Localization leaves customers with a warmer and more personal feeling. Thus, the product or service is perceived much more clearly in the target cultures. Localized content will optimize customer experience.

    3. Stronger Brand Image

    Qualified and effective communication ensures a clear understanding of the brand's image. Your brand gains a stronger and more consistent image. Correct transfer to the target culture strengthens brand loyalty and customer bonding.

    4. Getting Ahead in Global Competition

    Companies that can deliver their message more effectively get ahead of their competitors. Because they were able to explain their products and services better. Target audience-oriented localized content will be more attractive to customers.

    For these reasons, businesses must stand out in terms of success in global communication and intercultural interaction. This is possible by focusing on more than translation.

    Localization or Translation: Which Service Should You Choose?

    At the beginning of our article, we made the basic definitions of translation and localization. Now, let's take a look at the subtleties that distinguish these two processes. Translation basically deals with translating words from one language to another. Localization goes one step further: It adapts the content to the social and even political context of the target culture. Here, local customs, traditions and idioms are taken into consideration. So the difference here is mostly related to cultural sensitivity. Localization is done with a keen awareness of cultural subtleties. In this way, a result that is compatible with the emotional world and sensitivities of the target audience is achieved. Translation allows the user to understand the content. Localization conveys the feeling at the core of the text.

    Additionally, while translation is aimed at textual content, localization also includes visual design elements. Colors, images, and even the layout of a piece can evoke different emotions and reactions in different cultures. Exploring these visual elements during the localization process is important for creating a holistic, culturally effective communication strategy.

    Challenges in the Localization Process

    The localization process is a complex process that is not limited to just translating words. He may encounter a number of difficulties in this process. The most important of these is to accurately reflect cultural and social differences, as well as language. It is very important that expressions, traditions or similar cultural elements are not translated incompletely or incorrectly. Additionally, technical terminology must be compatible with technical expressions in the local language. This is a common problem, especially with industry-specific translations. These difficulties can prevent accurate localization and introduce misunderstandings.

    The main solution to these challenges is to work with professional localization experts. Translators with high familiarity with the culture of the target language fall into this category. The ideal thing is to work with a translator who is a native speaker of both the target and source languages. In technical localization, industry-specific guides and terminology databases can be used to alleviate problems related to technical terminology and provide better understandable translations in the local language. These solutions are effective strategies to overcome the difficulties encountered in the localization process.

    The Role of the Professional Localization Experts

    Working with professionals is a critical element of localization. The localization process requires not only language knowledge, but also cultural sensitivity, industry knowledge and communication skills. The ability to understand the fine details of the target culture is a must. This ensures that the translated content is effective not only in terms of language but also in cultural context.

    Since localization is often a complex process, a professional approach is important to achieve successful results. Localization translators have a command of the language as well as technical terminology and can offer translations that meet industry-specific requirements. Working with professional localizers is an important step in not only achieving accurate translations, but also creating a culturally sensitive and effective communication strategy.

    Content Types Requiring Localization Services

    1. Websites and Interactive Content: Websites and other online platforms should be localized to appeal to a global audience. This includes adapting the language of the content, as well as visual elements and user interface, to the target culture. Such content is within the scope of website translation service.

    2. Apps and Mobile Games: Mobile apps and games are types of interactive content where users interact with language and culture. Localization is important to improve the user experience of such content and appeal to a wider cultural audience. These types of texts fall within the scope of software translation of technical translation services.

    3. E-Learning Materials: E-learning platforms, training materials and online courses should be localized, taking into account language and cultural differences. This not only provides students with a more effective educational experience, but also ensures that educational materials are more meaningful in the local context.

    4. Marketing and Advertising Content: Marketing materials, advertisements and promotional content should be tailored to the cultural expectations and norms of the target market. In addition to language, color selection, symbols and messages also play an important role in the localization process. If you are seeking this type of service, you need localization within the scope of commercial translation.

    5. Legal and Medical Documentation: Legal contracts, medical reports, and similar documents contain specialized terminology that requires expertise. Correctly localizing such documents is critical to ensure compliance with legal or medical sensitivities.

    6. Product Manuals and Technical Documentation: Product manuals, technical documentation, and user guides often contain industry-specific terms. Localization ensures that these terms are conveyed accurately in the local language and provides users with a reliable source when providing product information.

    7. Human Resources and Job Postings: Human resources materials, job postings and company policies should be localized to align recruitment processes and company culture with local norms.

    Translation Offices Providing Localization Services

    For a successful localization work, you can work with translation offices that take the above-mentioned issues into consideration. Ask questions about these points when you contact us for service. Their answers will give an idea about whether they are sufficient for this service. You can also ask for examples of their past work and references.

    Tek Translation has a staff of experienced translators who are native speakers of the languages they work in. We have professional translators who do intensive localization work within this staff. We offer you sample translations for each translation branch. As with other types of services, you can work with Tek Translate for a professional solution in localization.


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