UX Localization? Is that a "thing"? and how we measure UX satisfaction?
This is post is a little different from the previous ones; it is a post of reflection that seeks to ask questions and perhaps find answers. And that is actually one of the main reasons why this blog exists, the reason why I write a post every week is not that I have the answers of every Localization challenge, I wish !!! but writing every week it reminds me of what's important; so I hope most of you realize that I'm not trying to preach over some of the topics I write; I'm trying to share a bit of my 20+ years-journey in this fascinating Localization industry, and through blogging and writing just have an awareness of my own limits and the challenges of our industry.
No one person has all the answers, and the best thing of writing is when you send me emails or comments. When I hear from you struggling with the different localization challenges you deal ... and I when I share my view ... .maybe we get a better way to solve the puzzle of Globalization!
After this reflection (it seems today I woke up philosophical!)) My question, and my post this week is....
Is there UX localization? Is that a thing? Should exist?
Is there a direct relationship between UX/development/technical issues and brand satisfaction? Can we measure it?
And how can a localization department influence the different teams needed to develop an app?
Let's elaborate a little about these concepts. Click HERE to download the slide PDF
In the development of an application, in the creation of a video game, or software in general, an incredible number of hours are invested in the design phase, in coding.
We analyse the monetization model, the user retention metrics ... hundreds of thousands of Eur / USD are spent in these activities, which obviously have a huge impact on the brand reputation and they also have an impact in user experience. No doubt about that, those tasks are necessary.
But, what about other aspects that they impact on user experience, for example.
• Those truncations in the text strings that make our UI not very nice to look or
• that font that it is so poorly implemented that even with my new glasses recently graduated I hardly see the text on the screen of my mobile (and I have the iPhone Plus! I do not even want to imagine the user experience of a screen of 4 ") or
• those placeholders, those variables that for different reasons instead of showing the text show a [%%%% placeholder]
Perhaps we might think this does not impact much the user experience, but I disagree, it affects.
However why these type of bugs take several releases/sprint cycles to fix?
If we are going to create an awesome app for an awesome user experience ... if we are aiming to build better user experience should not be coding bugs fixed?
It is true that these types of bugs are not showstoppers, but, why do we tend to think that these types of fixes are "nice to fix"?
If we want to have a great app, a delighted user ... should we not pay attention to the different layers of customer satisfaction? Probably we answer to that questions with a Yes, but then, why is it so difficult to implement Internationalization mindset in game development teams?
I think that everyone who works in this g-localization industry has to keep insisting in our circles of influences, we need to insist on the idea that to make an app truly global is an important step to growth reach. And growth reach is easier when the UX experience is wonderful. And that goes beyond choosing one word or another for a button.
It means to understand the colors that our potential users like (color matters! see the picture), it means choosing an attractive font, with nice readability and it means understanding that the code variables must be prepared to work with 3 genres (male/female / neutral) ... means adapting logos, images ... it means a lot of things, yes, it's a lot of work, but when we combine great coding, great localization with great marketing strategy ... when we embrace excellence in user experience ... it's when we might be closer to boost our sales and increase our retention metrics.
What do you think? Is UX localization a thing?
Did you find powerful UX localization best practices that we can share across our community?
Have you found any way to measure UX satisfaction by mixing the 3 layers of the above graph?
Why good coding is not considered as a mandatory step to enable great localization?
Why technical bugs UX / UI are not prioritized? Does it not affect the user experience? Maybe they do not affect the reputation of our app, and of our company?
Anyway, today I bring more questions than answer, though I believe the slide I created here might be a good beginning to have delight customers …
Dev teams and Globalization teams need to keep looking for a way to work together. From a tech team the understanding that it might look a small detail from a non-native speaker’s point of view can sometimes ruin totally the whole user experience in the target language.
The ideas above for improving user experience are more effective when they are integrated from the start, instead of being considered later as an afterthought.
I hope your comments and as always wish you a good weekend and a happy g-localising week!