UK localisation is not some Government policy intended to ensure that only local people get jobs. It’s actually the process whereby products, services, software, websites and text documents are adapted to the language, culture and “look-and-feel” of a particular country, in this case the UK.

When localising any product or service for the UK, translation alone tends not to be enough. The ultimate objective of localisation is to make sure that the product or service appears to have been developed locally, by local people for local people.

Subtle Changes

As well as ensuring that the spelling, grammar and punctuation are suitably tailored, it’s essential that local idioms and linguistic conventions are used. It’s often necessary to make subtle changes to take account of things like local social, cultural, racial and religious sensitivities. But it also extends to gender roles, geography, topography, date/time formats and national holidays.

After the translation work has been done, successful UK localisation requires the additional services of people with these two key skills:

  • mother-tongue language skills
  • expertise in local cultural sensitivities

Don’t Overlook UK Localisation

For any business which wants to succeed in the UK market with its product or service it’s important to get it localised properly. UK consumers are picky. When they come across hard to fathom English in UK marketing content they’re likely to get the impression that the company isn’t really thinking very much about its target customers over here.

When a consumer has just purchased a product which requires self-assembly, for example, there are few things worse than opening the box and finding a set of assembly instructions that can’t be understood! This sort of thing can negatively impact sales. It will almost certainly lead to complaints and product returns.

If localisation is overlooked, or just poorly done, the business runs the risk of reputational damage and possible damage to its brand, as well as the financial implications of poor sales. Equally, when localisation is done skilfully and thoroughly the benefits can be significant.

We Can Help

Bishopsgate Copywriting have all the UK localisation skills that non-UK businesses require.

If you need to get your website, product manual or any other type of text document localised for the UK market, please contact us today for a quote.

Steve Shaw

1 Comment

  1. Engrish in user manuals and the like is VERY annoying and yes very damaging to company and product reputation

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