How to Build a Localization Strategy? What Should Go into Your Localization Toolkit?
Forward-thinking companies leverage advanced localization technology to dominate global markets. Effective localization strategies backed by powerful technology help you automate your processes and achieve higher work efficiency. The latest tools and methods, such as neural translation, MT tools, and localization management platforms, have remarkably simplified localization operations.
Modern localization technology helps global businesses capture foreign markets more effectively and faster. However, leveraging the new localization technology can be challenging and confusing for businesses. Your Localization project must be backed by a robust strategy to keep things going in your favor from the beginning till the end.
Let’s have a closer look at the significance of localization strategy and what you must keep in your localization toolkit for a smooth and successful localization project execution.
Table of Content
- Significance of Localization Technology
- How to Create a Localization Strategy?
- Factors Influencing Localization Strategy
- Executive Support
- Company’s Culture
- Maturity of Functions
- Team Collaborations
- Budget & Resources
- Company’s Future Goals
- Top Features your Localization Platform Must Have
- Workflow Automation
- Al powered Translations
- Translation Editing Tools
- Third-party Integrations
- Real-time Team Collaboration
- Regular Data Analytics
- Cloud Technology
Significance of Localization Technology
The rise of globalization has led to many innovations globally. Similarly, there is a rapid development of tools and technology to cope with changing business landscape. Localization technology has evolved so much over the past few years, helping global businesses in creating localized brands for diversified audiences. Companies use advanced localization tools and platforms to manage their global brand persons and digital presence. From machine translation and glossary management to translation project management systems, every piece of technology helps with quality and speed.
To manage high volumes of brand content translation and cope with growing localization needs, you must have the right technological tools in place. You can easily find full-service professional localization management platforms packed with all the essential tools that you may need to fulfill your localization needs.
How to Create a Localization Strategy?
Based on your unique localization demands and goals, you have to create an effective strategy accordingly. From choosing the right localization tools to adopting effective methods, you have to come up with a strong localization strategy aligned with your business goals. To make an effective localization strategy, you first have to conduct detailed market research. It is important to understand target market intricacies and core business requirements to create a suitable strategy.
So, based on the specific needs of your company and its expansion goals, you have to create a strategy considering the target market, cost, resources, workforce, etc. A good strategy also helps you make the right use of technology and resources. Here are some important things to keep in mind while developing your localization strategy.
First of all, identify the technology available and the workforce responsible for handling it. Make sure your tools and resources are scalable to be adjusted to changing business needs. The legal policies and regulations in the target market are also important to consider to smoothly run your business globally without any problems.
Factors Influencing Localization Strategy
When it comes to developing an effective and robust localization strategy for your global brand, here are a few factors you must consider.
To develop a successful localization strategy, you must have some level of support from senior management and executives. Support from higher management helps you in the smooth and effective implementation of the strategy. Otherwise, your localization strategy may lose its strength and fail to achieve its goals.
Your overall company’s culture also has a lot to do with the successful implementation and execution of the localization strategy. For instance, if your company is resilient to change, you’re going to have a hard time implementing a new strategy. It may also take you longer to convince people to work toward your new localization strategy.
Maturity of Functions
Is it the first time your company has ever experienced a global expansion strategy, or has it been easier to expand? It depends on which development stage your company is at. For instance, if it is your very first globalization strategy, your functions will be less complex. On the flip side, if you have already been to expansions, every new expansion strategy will complicate things, and your globalization functions will become more sophisticated.
To make your localization strategy work, your teams for different departments have to work in collaboration. There has to be a seamless communication flow between finance, marketing, IT, and the logistics department and teams. Effective communication between teams reduces misunderstanding and inter-departmental conflicts.
Budget & Resources
If you want a localization strategy to become successful, it will take a good amount of time and budget. To achieve your localization goals, you must have all the necessary resources with a sufficient budget to get things going from the beginning till the end. Lack of funding and resources could make your strategy fail, or you have to give it some time and effort to gradually go ahead.
Company’s Future Goals
What are the future goals and growth trajectory of your company also going to have a huge impact on the localization strategy success? For instance, if your company is in a growing phase and targeting multiple regions rapidly, there has to be some flexibility in your strategy. It would help you easily adapt to the changes happening throughout your localization project.
Top Features your Localization Platform Must Have
Assembling your localization toolkit smartly is significant to effectively execute your localization strategy and achieve your expansion goals smoothly. If you are using a professional localization platform for localization translation project management, here are some important features that your localization platform must contain.
Automation speeds up your localization processes and helps you complete your tasks on time without missing any deadlines. Unlike traditional localization management, automated processes significantly reduce the workload of your employees and support them in managing day-to-day localization operations. Professional TMS platforms streamline your translation and localization tasks and automate the file management procedure. Workflow automation reduces your task complication that also reduces the chances of errors and mistakes.
Localization teams also tend to have higher work efficiency and productivity when workflows are automated and well-organized.
Al powered Translations
The rise of localization leads to higher demand for brand translations to target audiences speaking different languages. Global companies use AI-powered machine translation tools to manage a high number of translations on a regular basis. Most professional localization platforms come with built-in MT tools to help their users effectively manage their excessive translation workloads. Moreover, relying fully on human translators would not just cost you high but also lead to delays in translation delivery. Human translations are more time-consuming and expensive. So, if you want to get your translations done more cost-effectively and quickly, machine translation is the best option out there. You can also adopt a machine translation post-editing approach to manage your translation load. This way, you can combine both machine tools and human expertise to get the most effective and agile outcomes.
Translation Editing Tools
Having built-in translation editing tools in your localization platform can save you a lot of hassle. You don’t have to switch between different applications generating, managing, and editing your translation when one platform has it all for you. On a localization platform, when any document is translated, it is automatically moved to the editing phase for proofreading and reviewing. Some editing tools also come with AI algorithms that not just detect the errors from the translations but also give important suggestions to improve the quality and accuracy of your translations.
It will save your localization time and improve the collaboration between hybrid teams. With smart editing tools, you can significantly improve the quality of your translations and manage more translations in relatively less time. Your editor will take less time proofreading and reviewing each document because of the advanced editing features that your CAT tool provides.
The idea behind using a professional localization platform is to achieve higher work efficiency without compromising quality. Most localization platforms support third-party integration to maximize the productivity and performance of their localization teams. Integrations save time spent on switching between different applications and allow you to import the functionalities of different CMSs and design tools to a single platform. Doing this also eliminates the chances of errors that may occur while transferring information from one platform to another.
Most localization platforms allow integrations to all popular CMS, editing, and design tools. However, if your desired application is not covered under a localization platform, you can always ask for customizations. Integrations also improve data accessibility, which results in more satisfied teams.
Real-time Team Collaboration
Your professional localization platform also acts as a digital workplace for your internal and external localization teams. On a localization platform, you can invite your in-house and remote localization teams to work in collaboration with each other. Regardless of their location, team members would have access to the data and resources. Localization teams can have real-time communication that reduces conflicts and misunderstandings. Moreover, project managers can easily monitor all teams and get feedback from them about localization activities.
It also encourages problem-solving and allows your teams to learn from one another. Better team collaboration also enhances the employee’s productivity. If you are more remote employees working on a localization project, having a professional localization platform can really help you effectively manage remote teams.
Regular Data Analytics
To make your localization strategy drive more effective results, all your localization decisions should be backed by accurate data. Regular data analytics is quite a helpful tool that allows localization project managers to make informed decisions. It helps maintain transparency throughout the localization project and gives project managers high control over localization activities. Data reports and analytics gives project managers a higher understanding of what is happening throughout the project; it helps them mitigate risks and handle issues proactively.
It not just improves decision-making but also prevents fraud. Moreover, project managers can combat mistakes on time and make tweaks to strategy if things are not working out for them.
Using a cloud-based translation project management platform is not just cost-effective but also provides higher flexibility. Cloud-based TMSs are easier to set up, and you can scale them easily with changing requirements. For instance, you can instantly scale up your storage space or server size and other features’ specifications as per growing business needs. It reduces your time to market and provides faster and more effective execution of localization tasks. Compared to dedicated software, cloud technology is quite affordable and easy to manage. Moreover, the ease of backups and secured online infrastructure provide your teams with a safe environment to manage their localization tasks and collaborate with each other.
There is no need to hire separate technicians and IT experts to manage your in-house localization systems; cloud-based systems can be managed and maintained by remote technicians quite easily. Most TMS service providers automatically perform security measures on cloud-based tools, and you don’t have to manually perform any security backups.
Implementing an effective localization strategy and assembling the right localization toolkit is critical to your global business expansion. When it comes to choosing the most effective localization tools and technology, it goes way beyond comparing the prices and features of different options available in the market. You have to strategically manage everything by understanding the core demands of your business along with long-term company growth objectives.
I hope the information provided in this article will help you with localization strategy development and implementation. Moreover, assembling the right technological tools for your localization strategy execution is also imperative to consider for seamless localization project management.