Adding a new language to your website. Can it be as easy as a click of a button?
The iGaming sector is heavily regulated. Companies decide to enter or exit a specific market not purely based on market potential, but they often follow regulatory opportunities and changes in specific countries. Consequently organizations are faced with the challenge of adapting their product and marketing offering to new markets very quickly.
One of the main requirements of servicing local market is language. In reality there are many factors an organization needs to consider when entering a new market, eg. Payment methods, customer service, local SEO, etc. However at the most basic level the first hurdle that must be passed is adding the market’s local language to the company’s digital products, be it the websites, mobile sites, apps or digital marketing assets. Based on Common Sense Advisory research “Can’t Read, Won’t Buy: 2014″, 55% of buyers only buy from websites where information is presented in their language. For those with limited English, the preference for mother-tongue purchases increases to 80% or more.
New language – time and process considerations
When faced with the need to enter a new market quickly, can adding a new language be as fast as the click of a button?
The short answer: No. However there are ways an organization can prepare operationally to be able switch on new languages efficiently, thus reducing the time to market considerably.
A strong Localization Program will ensure that processes to translate the content into any language are streamlined and automated.
This will not only shrink the time needed to create the new language sites, but also greatly increase quality of the translated content, ensure consistency in language and create a strong base for the organization to build brand awareness in the local market.
What does this mean in practical terms? In terms of time to market the biggest chunk of time is definitely taken up by translation. The exact amount of time needed for translation will vary greatly depending on volume of content that needs translation, number of translation teams working on the task, review cycles to ensure quality. There isn’t much a company can do here to reduce the time to complete a good quality translation. It is not advisable to turn to Google translate or similar programs if you want to make sure your local users understand your content and if you aim to build any credibility in the local market. Let’s look for example at the simple phrase “Spot on betting!”; Google translate will translate this in German as “Stained betting” and in Italian as “Betting location”!
Let’s focus on the factors one can affect
- Available resources. Whether an organization outsources the translation or decides to use internal resources, make sure translators and reviewers have been tested for quality and are scheduled to start churning out translations!
- Terminology – an approved terminology/glossary should already exist in the source language (usually English). Start from translating the terminology into the new language. This will prevent hiccups and delays along the translation process and guarantee quality translation and consistency of key terms. This step can be done while you are preparing your content for translations, thus saving you more time.
- Translation tools. It is essential that the translation resources (internal or external) are using solid CAT tools (Computer Aided Translation) that will capture and store translation memories in the new language(s). Translation memories will reduce time spent on translation of repetitive content, reduce cost and ensure consistency in the translated content.
- Source content (usually English) – Make an inventory of all the content that needs to be translated and its location (CMS, marketing automation system, internal systems etc.). This will enable quick and easy gathering and organization of the source content for fast transmission to translation teams. It will also ensure that nothing is left behind. Document the inventory for future reference when adding additional languages.
- Systems and file formats – Don’t make the mistake of copy/pasting the content in Word or Excel files, this will take FOREVER. Copy/pasting will also greatly increase the possibility of human error. Being able to export content for translation guarantees speed and automatically safeguards the original formatting in the translated version. Once translations are ready, simply import the translated version into the appropriate system. The translated content will automatically be ready for deployment. Analyze the export/import options available in each system you’ve identified in your content inventory. Most CMS will have localization functionality that allow you to export content into XLIFF (industry standard localization format of xml files) or XML, which are ideal formats. Translation tools can manage a wide variety of formats, so simply ensure compatibility ahead of time.
- API integration (Ultimate automation) – To achieve the highest level of automation for translations processing connect your content systems with the translation tools through APIs. Through the use of APIs, translation systems can transfer files back and forth to and from the translators, requiring minimal intervention from an operator. APIs can even allow for automatic detection and transfer of newly created content to translators.
The same process can be applied to any language the organization decides to add. Once the above factors are in place, adding any new language to the website will be straightforward and reasonably fast. As close as one can get to the click of a button.
The rest, is just translation!