Parlez Vous Français?


Taking in the sights in Quebec City and Jason shares some thoughts regarding how to internationalize your app listing...without having to translate your actual app.




Hey everyone, Jason Bavington here with Midnight Illusions, and we’re in the beautiful city of Quebec, one of the most historic towns in all of Canada.

It was founded in 1608, and the city is steeped in history, with beautiful cobblestone streets. If you’ve never had a chance to go to Europe or France, come to Quebec City. You see a history and a streetscape of towns and houses that are straight out of Europe.

In Quebec because we’re in Quebec City they speak French, so Je parle un peu de Français, mais pas beaucoup, I speak a little bit of French, but not very much. But, I keep trying. And it’s always good to try to speak French if no one speaks English here. Speaking French helps you get a little bit closer to the people; they tend to have a better report with you, and it takes you further.

This is also true in the app business, as well. In the app business, this is referred to as localization, where you are able to translate your app into a variety of different languages, and now there’s over 20 different languages in the App Store that you can translate to. Everything from French to Malay to Vietnamese, and more.

There’s a lot of advantages to translating your app into other languages. The first and foremost advantage is that you’re literally speaking the language of the people who you’re sharing your app information with. This is really helpful in terms of how people search on the store. Say if you have an app that’s about dogs, and you’re on the French store, or even the Canadian-French store, if the title of your app is "Chien", which is French for dog, verses "Dog", you’ll get higher in the search rankings and you’ll get more exposure, more discoverability, because people are searching for chien, versus dog. This is true for all App Stores.

The other major advantage is that by translating apps into other languages, indexes constantly search the App Store and scrape the store for their content and then re-employ that content on their search index, Google sees all of that. And, as you know, it’s important to have a strong network that brings all of the traffic back to your app. Doing that in the other local languages further increases your discoverability of your app.

So, you can translate your app title, you can translate your app keywords and you can translate your app description, to tell people what it is that your app is all about. Now, how do you get this done? Well, you can speak to your programmer; they can help you set up your app in the various stores, set up the various languages for you and then populate those language fields with the appropriate language content.

And, how to get your content translated into the various languages? You can speak to your local Chamber of Commerce. There is probably someone who does professional translation services. There’s a variety of online services that offer translation. And, you can try and use Fiverr, although I wouldn’t recommend going that approach. What often happens is that people will just take your content, throw it into Google Translate, and send it right back to you. That’s not really effective. Yes, you will get content in another language, but it might not make a lot of sense, which isn’t all that great.

One final tip for you. When you start to translate your languages, if your default language is English, make sure you get your screenshots in the default language before you start to translate because when you set up the additional languages, the additional localizations, the store will take your screenshot content with you. If you do it later, you’ll have to resubmit all of your screenshots for all of the different languages, and that gets really, really cumbersome and it’s not very fun. I’ve done it before; it’s not great. So, learn from my mistakes. Get your screenshots in first and then translate.

That’s everything about localization for your content today. When you’re doing your descriptions, at the bottom of your descriptions if your app is actually in English only you can say at the bottom, the content of this app is in English. So, just make sure your audience understands that when they’re using your app, interacting with your app, they’re not going to expect to see it or experience it in French; they’ll experience it in English only.

All right, so, again, it’s Jason from Midnight Illusions, in beautiful Quebec City. Leave your comments below, and tell us how localization is working for you, how it’s increasing your discoverability in the stores, how it’s increasing the search engine ranking for you. I’d love to hear your comments; I always love hearing from you guys.

Thanks very much. Enjoy the sunshine.


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