Got divisions around the globe? Want to Internationalize and Localize your web presence to other countries and languages? Maybe you’re just looking to address a non-English speaking audience right here in the U.S.
Here are eleven things to consider:
- Language/country combinations – which ones will you support?
- Accurate translations – think about building a company process that ensures accurate and eloquent translations for the populations you’re targeting.
Here’s an example of what you don’t want: “Localization support in .Net Framework 2.0 become much more easier and brings fun during localization process.” Ironically, this was pulled from a site about building multi-language sites. Yikes!!
- Cascading Style Sheets (CSS) – Determine the fonts you’ll need to accommodate in your CSS. For example, most Latin based languages require special characters (Spanish, German, French, etc.) ; Chinese and Japanese require symbol support, and Arabic is written right to left.
- Design Standards – Corporate site design templates should anticipate content size differences. Size disparity can be significant from language to language.
- Video, Audio, Image Content – country/language specific versions are often required. Develop this content with an eye towards localization when possible.
- Search Engine Optimization (SEO) – country/language specific sites should be tagged with localized meta data, titles, images, links, video, etc.
- Content Management Systems (CMS) – make sure your CMS supports all the languages you’ll be maintaining and that user authorizations can be assigned and managed by country if necessary.
- Ecommerce Solutions – does your shopping cart offer the necessary languages and currencies for product browsing and checkout? Can product descriptions be maintained in different languages and assigned to the appropriate countries?
- Site Navigation – can navigation text be easily customized by country/language?
- Store Locators – will your U.S. solution support users in other countries? Will the integrated map still work overseas?
- Site and Product Search – will search solutions still work for non-English sites?
The list above should get you started down the right path. More questions? Contact topLingo…