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Going Local is the New Global

The world came to a shocking standstill when the pandemic hit the world. The way organizations had to incorporate a complete changeover and revamp their business processes, everyone realized the need of digital transformation. And the path towards digital transformation can only be effectively paved out with products making their presence global by going local. Globalization, internationalization and localization have become the new normal along with the pandemic in making organizations go beyond the set boundaries and cater to the needs of a global population. To ensure this, globalization and localization testing services become important efforts.

Nuances within Globalization and Localization Testing

Globalization (G11N) essentially becomes an umbrella which includes internationalization (I18N) and localization (L10N) as two sub-categories. With globalization, a product is made market-ready for a global audience – internationalization incorporates the development process to make a product locale-specific and localization helps make a product cater to a local audience (from linguistic to cultural nuances). Thus, globalization and localization testing come in as crucial testing strategies to make a product wholesome to a locale-targeted audience.

As a broader term, globalization testing entails all the facets of making a product go global. Starting from the very inception of a product’s development to its release in the market, globalization testing encompasses the whole gamut of testing types and coverage. 

With localization testing services, certain nuanced facets come into being. It mainly encompasses testing a product based on its linguistic coherence as well as its cultural soundness. Linguistic testing and translation services become key in making a product local – ensuring that there are no gaps related to scripts or semantics, linguistic experts play a crucial role. For instance, European scripts vary from an Arabic script – the way of writing is also reversed. Thus, it becomes important to test a product thoroughly for its linguistic nuances as per certain regions and locales.

But linguistic coherence is not just the only criterion to make a product locale-specific. Cultural nuances become a very crucial aspect to make a product truly local – ensuring that a product does not harm the sentiments of users with any inappropriate content, images or gestures, for instance. Thus, cultural nuances also need to be seamless and coherent – which need to be incorporated in a product end-to-end.

Amalgamating Shift-left and Right Approaches

Organizations can truly accelerate digital transformation when their products cater to users across the globe. Globalization and localization testing also need to be a part of an SDLC (Software Development Life Cycle) – from the very early stages to ensure that a product incorporates the localized nuances from the get-go. This would help save time at later remediations and would help identify and fix the pain points in the very beginning, itself. Thus, a shift-left approach in globalization and localization testing would be useful for organizations in expediting their processes. This does not go onto say that a shift-right approach shouldn’t be adopted. Users’ feedback on any linguistic incoherencies or if some cultural nuance isn’t appropriate, would help provide realistic feedback and improve the product. With the changing times, there are an array of cultural transformations which are taking place. Thus, it becomes imperative to study the industry trends and changes for staying at par with the latest in the market and availing end-to-end localization testing services.

An amalgamation of the two approaches would help strengthen the testing process as well as make the product go global seamlessly by incorporating the locale-specific nuances. As a product starts catering to each and every locale, becoming global can truly be achieved by going local. Thus, locale-specific products are the new global today – in realizing this, an end-to-end globalization and localization testing effort becomes extremely imperative.