Why Should a Game Publishing Company Localize its Games?
To create a game for only one locality can be likened to the way humans only use a small portion of their brains.
The majority of the potential is left untapped.
To become a global player in the game market it is essential to localize and here are the main reasons why:
To fully engage with customers, it is imperative companies do everything they can to identify with the people their products are designed to serve.
What does that mean for a game publishing company? Research tells us consumers generally relate more favorably to products that speak their language.
It can be difficult to sell a product at the best of times.
By removing those roadblocks which can be controlled, like language and cultural mismatches, game publishers can give themselves every opportunity to achieve the best return on investment possible.
Gaming is a Global Industry
If a game is created for only the US market, the potential customer base is only a portion of the global market.
Although the US is a significant slice of the overall pie, the Asia-Pacific market and Europe Middle East and African markets are becoming too big to be ignored.
In fact the Asia-Pacific market is growing so quickly, analysts are predicting that within the next year China’s mobile gaming market will outstrip the US.
Organic Marketing Opportunities
To recognize which results provide the most value to their customers, search engines and app stores are continually trying to better interpret and understand which products users identify with the most.
The more that users show an affinity for a company’s products, the greater the likelihood it is the rankings within these free sources of traffic will improve.
Both iTunes and the Google Play Store rely heavily on algorithms which factor in both the number of users using a product and user ratings.
The fact is, a user is more likely to download an app, and leave a review on something that is in their primary language. This helps fuel exponential growth.
The more top ratings and downloads a product has, the greater the likelihood it is that other users will find it and want to download it.
Game Publishers with Big Ambitions Need to Localize
For game publishing companies it absolutely makes sense to localize games.
Although localization services will increase the overall cost of development by a small percentage, by targeting a wider market, a company will ensure they maximise their opportunities.
As a result of this investment, the target market can be doubled or more, greatly enhancing chances of increasing overall profitability.
Localizing does of course come with its own set of challenges, including cultural differences, censorship and interpretation.
These don’t have to be reasons to avoid localization. Instead, they can be considered challenges which, if overcome, can enable companies to outshine their competitors.
It should be emphasized that in order for companies to fully maximise the benefits of localization, it is imperative these services be engaged early on in the piece.
By incorporating a global approach from the earliest design phases of the project, companies can avoid costly changes in the future and ensure their product can be successfully marketed worldwide.