With all markets so competitive, any business that wants to receive success on an international level needs to think about ways to globalize its platform. Having an official company website is primary to any modern day business, as a website can be a great means of attracting new customers and grabbing the most lucrative business opportunities.
However, the hard truth is that not everybody in the world can read and understand English, and in order to reach a truly global customer base, companies will have to think about ways to localize their business platforms. That is where website translation comes in. While services like Google Translate are the first go-to option for blogs and casual websites, serious businesses need to think higher and localize their website through the use of professional web translation services. If you own a business website that needs or may need website translation in the future, here are a few important tips to plan your website with internationalization in mind. Internationalization is the process of taking translation into consideration in the planning stage.
- Using a Dynamic, Responsive Website Template
When designing a template for your website, consider this: translating your content from English to several other languages can increase the amount of text by up to 70% or even more. This would mean that a static layout, which cannot shrink or grow with the amount of content on the web page, may easily lead to a distorted website. Thus, you must keep your website layout responsive, fluid and dynamic, so that containers and styles can adapt to changing webpage sizes resulting from translation on all mobile devices and computers.
- Keeping Fonts Readable
When choosing the perfect font for your website, there are a number of things to consider. Firstly, English-only fonts often produce unexpected results and are incompatible to several world languages. Most Eastern and Central European languages, for example, use accented letters and if your chosen font is English-only, the browsers will replace them with the default font set. It produces less then desirable results. For example, all letters will be Arial but the accented (í,á) characters that will be displayed in Times New Roman. Secondly, an important thing to consider is font size. Several Asian languages like Chinese and Arabic often need you to use bigger standard fonts than the English language. Thus, keep font size in consideration while designing the layout for your website.
- Considering RTL Support
Optimizing your company website for bidirectional text can be both time and resource consuming if you use CSS or Unicode control characters. Several designers use them anyway because they are universally applicable. However, a good designer knows that using HTML is the safest and easiest way to code bidirectionally. Depending on your targeted consumer base, it may be worthwhile to invest in optimizing your website for RTL support. In that case, make sure you use HTML markup where possible, and CSS and Unicode only as a last resort, while writing the code.
- Keeping Media Relevant
A picture is worth a thousand words. A video is worth ten thousand. As the influence of visual content increases, it becomes more and more important to keep your media assets culturally relevant. To start with, make sure that your website does not contain images or videos that represent ideas that are not acceptable to a particular culture or nationality. What is acceptable to people in the United States may not be favorable or even legal in another country. Thus, it is essential to filter out offensive content and keep your website relevant to the cultural bases of your targeted consumers.
- Choosing culturally correct colors
Colors have a proven impact on the way people think and act. For example, dark blue can bring out feelings of gloominess, while orange feels refreshing and bright. However, colors also have specific meanings to people of a particular culture or nation. Black is the color of mourning in the West, while white represents grief in the East. Choosing appropriate colors that not only look professional but are also relevant to your consumer base is a rather important matter. Decide upon your preferred color combination for website designing accordingly. Adobe Color can be a great way to choose the right color palette for your blog or website after selecting a culturally correct base color.
- Localizing Currency
If you plan on carrying out ecommerce activities on your website, it is exceptionally important that you have options to localize currency. The idea is to choose an ecommerce platform that supports multiple currencies and countries, something that is an essential feature of services like PayPal and CC Avenue. Your ecommerce platform should be smooth, user-friendly and easy to localize. It should be able to support several nationalities and currencies natively, without the need for heavy optimization and coding expertise.
- Localizing Social Media
Depending on your targeted consumer base, you must decide upon which social media platforms your company should be using. In the US, Facebook and Twitter dominate the scene, while other platforms like Google+, LinkedIn and Instagram are commonly used. In other countries, however, the situation might be completely different. For example, most Russian speaking communities and countries use the social network VK, which is the dominating social media platform for Russian speakers. Depending on what your targeted consumer base is and which countries and communities you wish to appeal to, you must choose social media platforms that are relevant to your followers and potential customers. Also, several social media services like Facebook even feature translation services. While not perfect, these tools come in handy when trying to influence multiple nationalities.
Are you prepared to take your website to the next level, enter international markets and rocket boost your sales? Does your website have what it takes to be globally lucrative? Then maybe, it is time to consider professional Language Service Providers (LSPs). Business Team Translations is a B2B translation agency that offers professional localization and translation services at affordable prices. To get your website localized today, send an e-mail to firstname.lastname@example.org or visit the official website at Business Team Translations.