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Good practices for content internationalisation (I18n)
In this new series of posts on our blog Globalízate, we will provide practical advice on the internationalisation of content. It is aimed at technical writers and authors, illustrators, heads of documentation departments and marketing managers.
It's all advantages
Why should you bother to internationalise your content? The short answer is because by applying just a few good practices of internationalisation, you obtain significant advantages:
- Product information that is more accessible, easier to understand and more end user-oriented.
- Improvement in the perception of your brand in all markets.
- More appropriate use of your products by end users.
- Fewer complaints and technical service queries.
- Acceleration of the time to market, i.e. the time needed for your product from development to launch is reduced (an earlier launch results in earlier and increased sales).
- Rapid increase in savings with regards to the cost of translating product information into multiple languages.
What is the internationalisation of content?
The term internationalisation is usually used to refer to software development and that is how the Wikipedia article on the concept of internationalisation defines it:
“Internationalization is the process of designing a software application so that it can potentially be adapted to various languages and regions without engineering changes.”
However, best practices of internationalisation can/should also be applied to the creation of product information. If you want to sell your products on the international market, all publications that contain product information must be internationalised: user manuals, maintenance and repair instructions, product or accessory catalogues, training materials, etc.
In this series of upcoming posts, we will cover the following aspects:
- Best practices for writing content (published)
- Best practices for DTP
- Best practices for terminology management
- Best practices for the creation of graphics
- Writing/publication tools – the best options
In short, the adoption of good practices of internationalisation is not a cost but rather an investment, the aim of which is to sell earlier, to increase sales and sell in more markets, to reduce costs throughout the process and to improve the perception of your brand.
Thank you for reading! We look forward to receiving your comments and suggestions for future posts.