Challenge in WebApp Localization: Tips to Handle Problems from Specialists

Just in every field, translation and localization have been significantly growing in line with the direction of the business and industries in this globalization era. This actuality is even closing its peak since transactions of information are used in almost every human activity in the entire world. Without exaggeration, this has made the translation and localization industries become a crucial part of globalization and top market activities. 

While every business is expanding its operations in countries other than its home country, the demand for translation services involving multiple languages is soaring. Web and WebApp localization could be on the top list of selling fields of translation since machine translation is not fully capable to handle it automatically. 

Website and WebApp are front liners of every business. They are also the frontiers when a business is marking its international expansion or opening a chapter in another country. Therefore, it should look perfect linguistically reflecting the brand that it carries.

Challenge in Localizing WebApp

The web-app localization should consider the ability of the App UI to create an identity to present flawless adaptation in the target language and culture. It often faces difficult translation tasks in attaining familiarity in order to promote a specific brand in a specific country or region. The transition may involve language modification according to local preferences to maintain brand integrity. Moreover, there are some other challenges that we compile below: 

  1. Deciding the Clear Context

For WebApp’s user interface translation, context should be given clearly from which the translators could decide the correct translation in the target language. In many cases, clients or app developers are unaware of this thing. Translators must deal with multiple strings which only consist of very few words like close, send, submit or delete. This English string seems very understandable for people who are familiarized with the internet and gadget. Yet, in many other languages, these types of short strings could have multiple equivalents that can promote misunderstanding.

In this kind of situation, communication between translators and clients is the key to overcoming the difficulties. Translators should find out the general purpose and design of the WebApp, thus they could decide the most relevant translation for the given strings. If the discussion is not possible due to some reasons, it is a transaltor’s responsibility to guess and research the terms used by the most similar applications.

  1. Fitting-in the Language

Just like selecting a dress and shoes, considering the best translation should never violate the size of the words. This is very principal in application development when the user interface should obey the rule of scale factor that affects the size of fonts and objects. When developers decide the character length should agree with the given space, then the translation process will face a kind of great obstruction. 

In translation, a word in one language could be equivalent to more than two words in another. This kind of outlier error in web app translation is even more often in translation involving languages with non-roman writing systems like Arabic, Hebrew, Chinese, Japanese, Cyrillic, and Korean where a character could mean a word or even a phrase in another language. Moreover, languages like German which associate nouns with gender specifications can provide another type of challenge to translators. 

This outliers error is sometimes unavoidable but best practices often come in the middle to justify the translator’s decision. In dealing with this obstruction, the translator should be able to create a neutral tone that makes sense to the user of the target language. Once again, communication with clients or developers should be prioritized to achieve a similar understanding. Some linguistic research would be very helpful to deal with text expansion when the term database is not yet ready at that time.

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