Why You Need to Make Non-English Versions of Your App

Making an app is already a hard-enough task with lots of stress-inducing factors. While putting the finishing touches on your app, you might be wondering if it’s worth it to add the additional responsibility of making non-English versions of your app, or what’s called localization. But as you’ll find with nearly all successful apps is that they do take the extra step to localize their app, which is highly important. Your goal should be to have your app used by everyone, including the 95% of people in the world who do not speak English as their first language. English-speakers are obviously not the only ones who use smartphones, and if you’re not catering to those who speak a different language by translating your app and making it accessible to them, you’re missing out on significant potential profits. 

While I believe there’s absolutely no reason for you to doubt localizing your app, it’s understandable that it is a daunting task, especially for a new app. But in case you’re still on the fence about the actual worth of localizing your app, here are a couple of reasons why you should make non-English versions of your app.

Market Share

App markets in other countries are growing at a highly rapid pace. In fact, the Common Sense Advisory determined that 50% of the countries ranked in the top 10 list for downloading apps are non-English speaking. That means that by not localizing your app, you’re closing off the market size by more than half of the world, and if you want to open up your app to two of the biggest app markets in the world, Japan and South Korea, you’ll need to translate your app. The Asia and Pacific regions of the world have more than half of the world’s global app users which if made available to them, your app will surely make much more money with a broader audience of users.

Exponential Growth of Your App

When you localize your app, you can experience a much faster growth rate in the number of downloads. It’s been proven by many other apps that when you localize, you get more downloads simply because a good chunk of the people downloading apps do not speak English as a native language. Apps have shown up to a 128% increase in download volumes after localizing their app. If you’re looking to drive more sales within your app, localization is a crucial factor. In Q1 of 2019, China, Japan, and Tawain were the most significant contributors to the growth of consumer spending on iOS devices along with the U.S., making up 80% of iOS spend. Hong Kong and France were also among the leaders in iOS spend and saw significant year-over-year growth in iOS market share. 

On Google Play, Japan, South Korea, Germany, and Taiwan were the most significant contributors to consumer spend in conjunction with the U.S., accounting for 70% of total spend in the same quarter. Russia and Indonesia are also imporant markets to watch for growing your app since their markets also showed significant year-over-year growth in market share. 

As you can see, non-English speaking countries are ranking high in app downloads and spending that it’d be crazy not to offer your app for use to them by localizing it; you’d be missing out on HUGE markets!