Going Local...in Turkey


Stranded by a once-every-30-years "Siberian Snowstorm" in Istanbul, Jason discusses how to 'go local' with your app.




Hi everyone. Jason Bavington here at Midnight Illusions, and we’re standing in Istanbul, Turkey. It’s one of the most snowy, crazy days outside. It’s the middle of winter, and people here haven’t seen the kind of snow that’s outside. It looks like something that’s in our backyard in Ontario. The airport is completely shut down, the kids are out of school, and they’re out having fun. And we are standing in the Grand Bazaar.

The Grand Bazaar is an ages-old marketplace. It’s all covered roofs; it covers 66 streets in this area. It’s about two-and-a-half square kilometers in size. There’s about 3,000 stores in here, and it employs about 40,000 people in this Bazaar.

And even though it’s ages old, there’s gorgeous architecture here. All sorts of exposed stonework and brick. Still, almost all the shopkeepers, when you’re walking past, are on their cellphones messaging their friends and playing games, just like anyone else is doing back home in Ontario in Canada.

The Bazaar even has its own app. You can download it straight off the app store, the Google Play store or iTunes store. And you can find out more about the Bazaar.

That got me thinking about when we’re designing apps and when you guys are designing apps, how important it is to localize your app in the language that you’re selling the app to. So if you have the most amazing Turkish delight creation app you’ve ever made, you definitely want to make sure you translate it into Turkish so that your local users can use it, view it, understand it, and play with it in the local language.

The reason this is so important is because it leads to greater conversions and it leads to more people spending more time in your app. That’s what we’re trying to do is to keep people in our apps as long as possible.

The way you do this in your app is a two-part process. The first part is that you want to set up your app for internationalization. This gets your app set up at the code base to be prepared to handle multiple languages. Once your app is set up for internationalization, step two is localization of your app. This is where you export everything from your app that has been spoken in another language. The title, the menus, the buttons, everything. You can even set up graphics in this way. You export all of these assets that are going to be translated.

Give them to a third party. Give them to your buddy who speaks Turkish, French, Polish or German. And then when they’re done, you import it back into your app through the localization process again.

Another awesome score about this is that it really scores some points with Apple and with Google if you set up your app this way because they all feel, well, the app is in multiple languages, there’s going to be more downloads, let’s give them a higher prominence on the Apple and Google app store. This helps you bubble up to the top.

So, that’s a little about localization for you. We spoke in the past about optimizing your app on the actual app store listings. We did that in Quebec. You can click the link below for the previous video blog about that. Today we’re talking about localization inside your app yourself.

So, I’m going to check out some of those lamps there as they are fantastic. We’ll probably pick up a scarf. We’re definitely going to pick up some Turkish delights. I’m going to leave you guys now but check out the Grand Bazaar app. Check it out in the app store.


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