4 Steps for Successfully Performing Localization Testing: A Practical Guide

When you take a look at localization trends, you may discern that website localization is becoming more popular every year. That makes sense seeing as how everyone in the world can access your website. Therefore, it would be beneficial for you as a website owner to have them understand the content on it.

If you are in the middle of localizing your website, you also need to understand the importance of localization testing. With the proper localization testing workflow, you can ensure everything is running smoothly and your website is ready for international markets.

If you have never performed this kind of testing before, here are the steps you need to take.

Know your needs

When performing localization and testing for it, you need to be aware of what you need and what you are after. There are 7,139 languages spoken today, and you cannot cater to all of them. Instead, you need to know what languages and cultures you want to focus on.

When learning the basics of localization, you realize that the first step is to identify your target market and define business objectives that are related to that market. Once you do that, you will know your localization needs.

And when performing your testing, you will be able to see if the localization tactics you have put into place so far are going in the right direction.

Use data to measure your success

Web Statistics
Web Statistics / Photo by Mikael Blomkvist from Pexels

Nobody knows what your target audience wants better than they know it themselves. When testing out how good your localization efforts are, take a look at what your website visitors think.

An easy way you can do this is to check out the data. The data you are checking and the metrics you are using to measure your success will be different from one website to another, but the main thing you should focus on is your conversion rate.

This will also differ based on what you consider to be a conversion. It can be a purchase, download, sign-up, or anything else you are asking your website visitors to do. You can measure how many new customers you have from different markets and see if you are getting your desired ROI.

It is best to do this for each region individually because that is the only way you can determine where you might be doing something wrong. For example, if your American website visitors are converting in high numbers but the British ones are not, try to ask yourself why and find ways to solve that issue.

Perform early and frequent tests

One mistake a lot of companies make when it comes to localization is that they see it as an afterthought and not as a pressing business matter. By leaving your testing for the last stages of the localization process, you will probably find yourself in a lot of trouble.

Let us say, for example, you are ready to release your website in a target market, you perform your tests, and suddenly realize there are more mistakes than you were expecting. The translation is inaccurate, the text does not fit into the screen, or the design simply does not look right.

In this case, your team will have to spend countless hours fixing little mistakes you did not expect to find, and you might not even be able to realize your website when you planned to. So save yourself the trouble and perform tests whenever you can.

If you are looking for ways to improve your business reputation, you need to have a professional website. For those who are catering to a worldwide market, localization is part of creating that professional image, but you will only give off a professional image if that localization is done right.

Be prepared for the issues that might occur

Testing and Debugging Code
Testing and Debugging Code / Photo by Christina Morillo from Pexels

When performing localization testing, you are basically looking for errors and inconsistencies that show potential limitations of your localization strategy. So you need to be well aware of the most common issues that can pop up during localization testing.

They include:

  • Broken functionality: This can sometimes be caused by translated resources, data, or the execution environment.
  • Corrupted layout: Localized text, images, and icons can sometimes be corrupted because of the UI controls that automatically adjusted their size, making your layout look strange.
  • Text that was not translated: No matter if you are using a program or you hired a translator, mistakes can happen and parts of your text might not have been translated at all.
  • An overlap in text: Sometimes, the translated text simply cannot fit in the available space, which often causes an overlap or overflow in text.
  • Inadequate fonts: A font you have chosen for your website might not be able to display certain characters of the text you are translating, which will leave you with strange question marks or glyphs.

Conclusion

The internet has made the entire world accessible with just a click, and many website owners, as well as app developers, are using that to their advantage. When you have a clear localization testing workflow, you can reach people from all over the world, regardless of their language and culture.

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