We live in a world that’s better connected than ever before thanks to all the tech advances and innovations we’ve experienced in the course of time. For businesses, this means they have the possibility to look beyond local markets and provide their products and services to customers all over the globe. But that also implies taking the language barrier into account.
While English is the most widely used language in the digital space, there’s also a large number of people on the internet that don’t speak English at all. These people, who can turn into potential customers, expect companies to cater to them in their native languages. That’s a demand that businesses these days can’t afford to ignore if they want to remain relevant.
Needless to say, developing multilingual products/services and managing them properly is not an easy feat. So, here’s what experts recommend to focus on when embarking on such a journey.
Build a Strong Foundation
Creating products that will serve different markets where consumers speak different languages requires business owners to perform a careful balancing act. This implies working with different stakeholders and deciding what products and services you want to provide on what market and what steps you should follow in this respect.
You can only reach your goals if every party involved in this process is on the same page. Effective communication and close collaboration are vital at this point. Although working styles may differ with each partner, there has to be a common ground that you can build on as you develop your products.
While it’s important to nurture strong relationships with each stakeholder, it’s also essential to maintain a global approach. You want customers in every part of the world to enjoy the same experience and level of quality when using your products and services. In order to make that a reality, you have to engage customers in each stage of the creation process. Of course, localizing content and employing an effective machine translation API plays a big part in it. But if you really want to give users the authentic experience they’re expecting and get things right the first time, make sure you take customers’ needs and wants into account early on.
Have a Strategy
Once you’ve managed to create a collaborative workflow with all partners and stakeholders and you’ve made sure that you are going in the right direction, it’s time for you to develop a solid strategy to put things into practice. This strategy must include each step taken in the translation process, from the persons who are authorized to request translations to those who are responsible for delivering the final product.
Last but not least, you have to understand that developing multilingual products and services is a never-ending journey. There’s always room for improvement, even if you’re satisfied with how things worked out from the get-go. You have to embrace change and continuous learning if you want your products and services to thrive in a multilingual environment.