The Essential Guide to Internationalization (i18n) in Software Development

Integrating CoveyThis Translate into any website is incredibly simple.

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Multilingual Site Made Easy

Globalizing Digital Frontiers: The Imperative of Internationalization (i18n) in Software Development

Internationalization, often abbreviated as i18n (where 18 stands for the number of letters between ‘i’ and ‘n’ in “internationalization”), is a design process that ensures a product can be adapted to various languages and regions without requiring engineering changes. This concept is pivotal in today’s globalized market, where software, websites, and digital content are accessed by users from diverse linguistic and cultural backgrounds. This article delves into the significance, strategies, and challenges of internationalization, offering insights into its essential role in global product development.

Significance of Internationalization

The primary goal of internationalization is to create products that serve a global audience. It involves separating content from code, designing flexible user interfaces, and developing systems that support various character sets, currencies, date formats, and more. 

By adopting an internationalization-first approach, companies can significantly reduce the time and cost associated with localizing their products for different markets. Moreover, internationalization enhances user experience by providing content in a user’s native language and format, thereby increasing product accessibility and user satisfaction.

Bridging Global Divides: The Role of i18n and ConveyThis in Website Translation

In an era where digital content transcends geographical boundaries, the need for websites to communicate effectively with a global audience has never been more critical. Internationalization (i18n) serves as the foundational framework that enables this global reach, preparing software and digital content for localization into various languages and cultural contexts. Meanwhile, tools like ConveyThis have emerged as powerful solutions, streamlining the website translation process and making it more accessible than ever. This article explores how i18n principles and ConveyThis work hand in hand to facilitate seamless website translation, fostering global connections and understanding.

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How Many Words Are On Your Site?
The Essence of Internationalization (i18n)

Internationalization, or i18n, is the process of designing products, applications, and content to ensure they can be easily adapted to different languages, regions, and cultures without requiring significant changes. i18n addresses fundamental aspects such as supporting various character sets, accommodating different formats for dates, currencies, and numbers, and ensuring software can handle input and display requirements for languages that read from right to left, such as Arabic and Hebrew. By integrating i18n from the outset, developers pave the way for smoother localization, enhancing the usability and accessibility of websites across diverse global audiences.


ConveyThis: Simplifying Website Translation

ConveyThis stands at the forefront of website translation technology, offering an intuitive and efficient solution for businesses looking to globalize their online presence. With just a few clicks, website owners can integrate ConveyThis into their sites, enabling automatic translation of content into over 100 languages. This tool leverages advanced machine learning algorithms to provide accurate translations, which can then be fine-tuned with the help of professional translators or through in-house editing tools.

ConveyThis also considers the nuances of cultural adaptation, allowing for adjustments that go beyond mere translation to ensure that content resonates with target audiences. This attention to detail aligns with the core principles of internationalization, ensuring that websites are not just understandable but also culturally relevant and engaging to users worldwide.

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The Synergy of i18n and ConveyThis

The combination of i18n strategies and ConveyThis represents a comprehensive approach to website globalization. i18n lays the groundwork, ensuring that the technical structure of a website can support multiple languages and cultural formats. ConveyThis then builds on this foundation, providing the means to quickly and efficiently translate content, making the website accessible to a global audience.

This synergy enhances user experience, enabling visitors to interact with websites in their native language and cultural context. For businesses, this translates into increased engagement, reduced bounce rates, and the potential for global market expansion. Moreover, the ease of integration and use offered by ConveyThis, combined with the foundational support of i18n principles, makes website translation a viable and attractive option for companies of all sizes.


Strategies for Effective Internationalization

Locale-Neutral Development

Design software with a flexible architecture that can easily support multiple languages and cultural norms. This involves using Unicode for character encoding and abstracting all locale-specific elements from the application's core logic.

Externalization of i18n Resources

Store text strings, images, and other resources externally in easily editable formats. This simplifies the localization process, allowing for quick adjustments to content without the need to alter the codebase

Flexible User Interface Design

Create user interfaces that can adapt to different languages and text directions (e.g., left-to-right, right-to-left). This might include dynamic layout adjustments to accommodate varying text lengths and ensuring compatibility with various input methods.

Comprehensive Testing and Quality Assurance

Implement thorough testing procedures to identify and rectify internationalization issues. This includes functional testing, linguistic testing, and cultural testing to ensure the product is suitable for its intended market.


Read Most Frequent Questions

What is the quantity of words that require translation?

"Translated words" refers to the sum of words that can be translated as part of your ConveyThis plan.

To establish the number of translated words required, you need to determine the total word count of your website and the count of languages into which you wish to translate it. Our Word Count Tool can provide you with the complete word count of your website, helping us to propose a plan tailored to your needs.

You can also manually calculate the word count: for example, if you are aiming to translate 20 pages into two different languages (beyond your original language), your total translated word count would be the product of the average words per page, 20, and 2. With an average of 500 words per page, the total number of translated words would be 20,000.

What happens if I exceed my allocated quota?

Should you surpass your set usage limit, we will send you an email notification. If the auto-upgrade function is turned on, your account will be seamlessly upgraded to the subsequent plan in line with your usage, ensuring uninterrupted service. However, if auto-upgrade is disabled, the translation service will halt until you either upgrade to a higher plan or remove excess translations to align with your plan's prescribed word count limit.

Am I charged the complete amount when I advance to a higher-tier plan?

No, as you've already made a payment for your existing plan, the cost for upgrading will simply be the price difference between the two plans, prorated for the remaining duration of your current billing cycle.

What is the procedure following the completion of my 7-day complimentary trial period?

If your project contains fewer than 2500 words, you can continue using ConveyThis at no cost, with one translation language and limited support. No further action is required, as the free plan will be automatically implemented after the trial period. If your project exceeds 2500 words, ConveyThis will cease translating your website, and you will need to consider upgrading your account.

What support do you provide?

We treat all our customers as our friends and maintain 5 star support rating. We strive to answer each email in a timely manner during normal business hours: 9am to 6pm EST M-F.

What are the AI credits and how are they related to the AI translation of our page?

AI credits are a feature we provide to enhance the adaptability of the AI-generated translations on your page. Every month, a designated amount of AI credits are added to your account. These credits empower you to refine the machine translations for a more fitting representation on your site. Here's how they work:

  1. Proofreading & Refinement: Even if you aren't fluent in the target language, you can use your credits to adjust the translations. For instance, if a particular translation appears too lengthy for your site's design, you can shorten it while preserving its original meaning. Similarly, you can rephrase a translation for better clarity or resonance with your audience, all without losing its essential message.

  2. Resetting Translations: If you ever feel the need to revert back to the initial machine translation, you can do so, bringing the content back to its original translated form.

In a nutshell, AI credits provide an added layer of flexibility, ensuring that your website's translations not only convey the right message but also fit seamlessly into your design and user experience.

What do monthly translated pageviews mean?

Monthly translated pageviews are the total number of pages visited in a translated language during one month. It only relates to your translated version (it does not take into account visits in your original language) and it does not include search engine bot visits.

Can I use ConveyThis on more than one website?

Yes, if you have at least a Pro plan you have the multisite feature. It allows you to manage several websites separately and gives access to one person per website.

What is Visitor Language Redirection?

This is a feature that allows to load an already translated webpage to your foreign visitors based on the settings in their browser. If you have a Spanish version and your visitor comes from Mexico, the Spanish version will be loaded by default making it easier for your visitors to discover your content and complete purchases.

Does the price encompass the Value Added Tax (VAT)?

All listed prices do not include Value Added Tax (VAT). For customers within the EU, VAT will be applied to the total unless a legitimate EU VAT number is furnished.

What does the term 'Translation Delivery Network' refer to?

A Translation Delivery Network, or TDN, as provided by ConveyThis, functions as a translation proxy, creating multilingual mirrors of your original website.

ConveyThis's TDN technology offers a cloud-based solution to website translation. It eliminates the need for alterations to your existing environment or the installation of additional software for website localization. You can have a multilingual version of your website operational in less than 5 minutes.

Our service translates your content and hosts the translations within our cloud network. When visitors access your translated site, their traffic is directed through our network to your original website, effectively creating a multilingual reflection of your site.

Can you translate our transactional emails?
Yes, our software can handle translation your transaction emails. Check our documentation on how to implement it or email our support for help.