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Localizing a global product


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At, we support over 40 different languages, and we’ve seen the value in enabling users to read in their own language, and see information presented in a format they are used to. Whether we’re optimising the website for right-to-left languages, or formatting numbers, currencies and dates correctly, we’re constantly working on improving the localization of our website — and that awareness extends to the design process as well.

In this talk, I discussed and shared examples from my experience at designing for users in over 200 cultures using the website in over 40 languages.

Published in: Design
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Localizing a global product

  1. 1. Richard Omollo How we localize a global product
  2. 2. Richard Omollo UX designer & Team Lead
  3. 3. Eight stunning in numbers - Headquartered in Amsterdam - 1.4 million room nights per day - 90 offices around the world - 15,000 colleagues - Development from three continents
  4. 4. We serve a number products, both on desktop and handheld devices
  5. 5. 200 countries and territories Available in 43 languages 43 languages & dialects which is more than any other e-commerce website
  6. 6. Global Product Localising a global product
  7. 7. One product Different cultures
  8. 8. Plugs differ in different regions Think of these as different cultures
  9. 9. How do we localize for different cultures?
  10. 10. Localization Adaptation of a product, application or document content to meet the language, cultural and other requirements of a specific target market
  11. 11. Internalization The design and development of a product, application or document content that enables easy localization for target audiences that vary in culture, region, or language.
  12. 12. Culture and e-commerce Culture affects internet usage, e-commerce trust, information and communication technology adoption, internet marketing and website development
  13. 13. Localization... It goes beyond translating our product in 43 languages Understanding our users unique cultural characteristics and business practises is also key when localizing our product
  14. 14. Localization is…. Locally inspired Global scalable
  15. 15. Agile Continuous learning & Testing Research User Testing Hypothesis A/B Test Insights Localization is a process of continuous learning and experimentation to gather insights. - Get insights from research, market studies and user tests - Insights inform hypothesis, - We test every hypothesis We - learn (succeed) or learn (fail) from these tests
  16. 16. Research - Research for insights locally - Create market guides and market studies - Come up with and verify personas
  17. 17. Research insight - Brazil, book and pay in installments
  18. 18. User testing - Conduct both local user testing and - Remote user testing
  19. 19. A/B testing - Use insights to come up with hypothesis - Test these hypotheses - Learn from the data, and use the data to advice design and development decisions - We run local experiments and try them globally, we also run global experiments which at times we re-run for specific markets
  20. 20. Copy as a function of localization Perfect UX in all languages Data informed design UI patterns across cultures Diverse teams
  21. 21. LS in local offices in North America LS in local offices in South America LS in local offices in Europe LS in local offices in Asia Pacific LS in local offices in Africa/Middle East Copy as a function of localisation - 40+ copywriters - They work with Language specialists from our local office - Support multiple product teams - Work autonomously - Drive own strategy
  22. 22. Copy as a function of localisation English : Just booked 10+ other languages: Join millions of travellers around the world
  23. 23. Copy as a function of localisation Bold, Caps, Italics not always a thing
  24. 24. Strive for Perfect UX in all languages even if the UI looks imperfect in some Russian Perfect UX across all languages English
  25. 25. Russian Chinese Perfect UX across all languages English Pounds Indonesian rupiah Strive for Perfect UX in all languages even if the UI looks imperfect in some
  26. 26. England UAE Data informed Design Data is important in making informed decisions. Culture and people are no longer geographically separated as everyone is everywhere now a days. target by language and location If we can test it, we test it. If we can’t test it then we probably don’t do it - Stuart, director of design,
  27. 27. Data informed Design China - uses more apps Japan - prefers mobile web
  28. 28. UI patterns across cultures Chinese click vs typing
  29. 29. Netherlands - Facebook and Google log in China - Wechat log in UI patterns across cultures
  30. 30. UI patterns across cultures China home page UAE home page
  31. 31. Cultural norms affect UI China
  32. 32. It’s not everywhere Different cultures and regions may require unique identity of your product
  33. 33. Team of diverse talent & culture Apart from our diversity giving us strength, It also helps us in localization. We encourage colleagues to use the website in their native language
  34. 34. Team of diverse talent & culture Internal tools harness the power of cultural diversity
  35. 35. Thank you! @richardomollo All references to “", including any mention of “us”, “we” and “our” refer to BV, the company behind™