How can we get the permission of the customer’s data?

Permission Marketing

Permission marketing is a term coined by Seth Godin. He defines it as anticipated, relevant and personal (and timely). Permission marketing consists in the costumer agree to be involved in an organisation’s marketing activities, usually as a result of an incentive

In the following picture we can see a summary of a common, effective process for permission-based online relationship building to support engagement through the different stages of the customer lifecycle




The stages are:

Step 1)     Attract customers to website, partner microsite or social presence such as Facebook

Step 2a)    Incentivise in order to gain contact and profile information

Step 2b)      Capture customer information to maintain the relationship and profile the customer. It is important to design these forms to maximise their completion.

The most important factors are:

  • Branding to reassure the customer
  • Key profile fields to capture information to segment the costumer.
  • Mandatory fields
  • Privacy
  • Be simple
  • Explain the benefits of these data to the customers
  • Validation

Step 3)     Maintain dialogue through using online communications to achieve repeat site visits. That dialogue can be by

  • Sending an e-mail to the customer which is tailored based on the customers’ disclosed profile information
  • Displaying specific personalize information on the website
  • Using a social network to deliver content to the customer. That information can be personalize thanks to the linked with the email

Step 4)       Maintain dialogue consistent with customer’s profile using email, social media messaging or where cost effective, direct mail or outbound phone contact

The permission marketing have grown a lot thanks to social media marketing. Nowadays, the companies have a relation with their customer more complete by social network where opt in liking a brand on Facebook, following on Twitter or Instagram.


4. Customer Analysis


4. Customer analysis (Identify 2 strategic segments)

*1 from your own age group and another from the ages 40 years and up.*



In order to better serve its customers in the Netherlands, a customer analysis has been  conducted. This chapter focuses and analyzes the various types of customer Roo’Bar currently serves and tries to establish the perfect target group to reach in the Dutch market. Furthermore questionnaires/ interviews with the desired target groups will be conducted to get a better understanding of consumer behavior.

From the video interview and website of Roo’Bar we can assume based on the information published on that Roo’Bar wishes to create the perfect alternative healthy snack for any consumer that wants to live a healthy lifestyle. It is friendly in terms that the product complies with all food regulation and can be consumed by every type of consumers with various dietary needs. From lacto and gluten intolerance to vegetarians and vegan households. In addition to this the ingredients are all natural wheras production are all of the highest quality standards to deliver the best taste experience for consumers.

Furthermore athletes, hikers,climbers or anyone with a dynamic lifestyle benefits from the wholesome bar as this unleashes your inner superhero. The company has countless athlete superheroes who enjoys Roo’Bar. These are all visible on their website and range from Domen Kastelic to Boyan Petrov.

Roo’Bar sells protein bars and therefore operates in the protein bar food industry. In addition to this Roo’Bar also is an organic product as the ingredients are all natural and therefore also operates in the organic products industry. Based on Euromonitor reports; the dutch market to sell Roo’Bar is very favourable. Sales in snack bars in the Netherlands has been in 2014 50.6 million euros while in the year 2013 this amount was 48.4 million euros which is equivalent to an increase of 5.6%.  Furthermore sales in naturally healthy food have increased to 3.4% while for the organic food industry this reached a 9.1.% increase in 2014. All of this shows that there  growing trends towards a healthier lifestyle among the dutch households. An analysis also shows that dutch people would preferably purchase private labels consumer goods as these believe deliver more value. (source: Euromonitor Health and Wellness in the Netherlands report in the Netherlands).

Specifit target group:

human life cyclecustomers

The social significance of sports is deeply in the Netherlands. According to the Dutch Olympic Committee, about 69% of the population partipates in sports activities at least 12 times yearly  while 55% participates on a weekly basis. Younger generations such as young adults and middle youth are more involved in sports and fitness from all the other generation groups in the Netherlands. Aside from the mide-lifers (aged 45-59), the young adults (18-29) and middle youth (aged 30-44) are the most populated age group in the Netherlands standing at 3,197 and 2,527 (,000) respectively as of 2015.

As these 2 groups happen to also be the most involved and associated group in sports and fitness activities in the Netherlands, we have decided to further do research on these of potential customers. Young adults according to Euromonitor are also the most loyal group of the population to their brand and this would be a good opportunity as Roo’Bar would like to establish its brand within the operating market. Roo’Bar would like to increase its share market in the market that it is operating and by better serving and understanding these potential customers Roo’Bar can achieve this target. Peer-to-peer recommendations and word-of-mouth are one of the most effective marketing tools within this populations group. (Source: Euromonitor Consumer Lifestyles inthe Netherlands).

Localisation Literature



No matter size of a company, international sales and markeing is one of the most important success factor which “Localisation” integral part of the factor.


A website can be used as facilitator of sales which not only cost-effective but simple to implement. It could raise brand awareness, impression and deliver value to customers directly.


Not only translating but localising a web site is necessary task. Providing versions of site in different languages facilities customers to be familiar with an organization and may increase percentage of online customers’ check out. According to the research, customers perceive a organisation more favourably when they see a website with their familiar language (Tong, 2001).


Huge investments should not only translating languages but localizing content of a website in order not to be downgraded their international versions. However, localization the content is one of the largest technical challenges.


Furthermore, different culture and preference in each country are usually overlooked aspect of a design of website. While focusing on artistic templates and brand messaging, many companies ignore a role culture.





  1. Localization (also referred to as “l10n”) is the process of adapting a product or content to a specific locale or market. Translation is only one of several elements of the localization process.

In addition to translation, the localization process may also include:

  • Adapting graphics to target markets
  • Modifying content to suit the tastes and consumption habits of other markets
  • Adapting design and layout to properly display translated text
  • Converting to local requirements (such as currencies and units of measure)
  • Using proper local formats for dates, addresses, and phone numbers
  • Addressing local regulations and legal requirements

The aim of localization is to give a product the look and feel of having been created specifically for a target market, no matter their language, culture, or location.


  1. Internationalisation a design process that ensures a product (usually a software application) can be adapted to various languages and regions without requiring engineering changes to the source code. Think of internationalization as readinessfor localization. Internationalization can save significant expense, time, and headaches for everyone involved. Sometimes written as “i18n”, internationalization evolved from a growing demand for multilingual products and applications.


There are many benefits to i18n, including:

  • Easier adaptation of software applications (or other content) to multiple locales
  • Reduced time and cost for localization
  • Single, internationalized source code for all versions of the product
  • Simpler maintenance
  • Improved quality and code architecture
  • Reduced overall cost of ownership of the multiple versions of the product
  • Adherence to international standards


Unless internationlisation and localization have been successfully implemented on website, internet users would not be fully satisfied.



Why focus on LOCALISATION ?


If a company enter to the non-English speaking countries, a carefully-launched web strategy need to be implemented in order to maximize effectiveness of the site and serve international customers.


How to ANALYSING and PLANING the localization of a website ?


First of all, examination of internet access of each international market and online presence of local people need to be done.


The amount of graphics used should be posted regard on download times and speed of internet in each country. However, pictures and graphics should be sufficient to impress and interest target customers, plus, basic, practical and up-to-dated content of website should be considered.


What to localize

All the pages need not to be translated as some may provide local information such as job vacancies or events. It is crucial to select which pages to be the central core of website.


Keeping a site up-to-date

Continually monitor should be done as some parts of the site may changed or updated.


The structure of a localised site

Structure of an entire site should be done first in order to simply remain several languages at once. The easiest to organize a multilingual site is to store each lauage at the same location which is convenience for both users and web co-ordinator. Typically, such a site will have a link to each different language on its homepage, so a single web address can be used globally.


Other approach is storing each language site in its particular country site. The advantage would be speed up download times locally. This method is used by huge corporations which have a strong presence and large resources in each country.



The translation and the cultural adaptation of the design


Each region has individual language, slang, images, fashion, history, trend, symbols, color sense and law. In order to make a good translation is barely on a literal translation but locally creative freedom need to be added. This would show an understanding of the countries where a company enter and increase trust and loyalty among local visitors.


Considering whether country specific content should be provided regarding on sufficient and strong interest for the site in each country which may be adding a great value to the localization.


Therefore, it is important that the translators are native speakers and living in that countries long enough to be specialize in not only languages or slang but to deeply understand local behaviors. The translators should clearly translate message and deliver the closest meaning of texts in that specific languages.


Marketing contents also require particular skill of translation, understanding most of the industrial terms , having target visitors linguistic background and ability to create marketing text. Transcreation and copy writing need to dissect the original.


Main aspects to consider when localising a site People from different countries are different and therefore users from around the world will use a web site differently. In order to exploited opportunity of web site, localisation is good planning and good understanding .


There is a list of what need to be concerned:


  1. Hard-coded Text

Hard-coded need to remain in the original language.


  1. Hard-coded Fonts

Similar to text if fonts are hard coded, then they cannot be changed. The company should create fonts which is similar to the original one in order to keep tone and theme.



  1. Cultural Issues and symbols

Website design should avoid culture-dependent issues, which are not understood by multinational audience.



American mailbox with a flag means that there is a new mail. This symbol is used on many sites to indicate e-mail but people outside of North America do not recognize the mailbox. For a web site, a better symbol would be an envelope, which is universally understood.



Moreover, avoid using graphics that represent holidays or seasons, such as Christmas trees, pumpkins, or snow. As a general rule, the following should be avoided in any graphics used:

  • Hand gestures or body parts; graphics with multiple meanings
  • Religious symbols such as stars, crosses
  • Shapes that are tied to culture (e.g. stop signs, sports, mailboxes etc.)



Also, be culturally sensitive when choosing sounds for use in a site. While some users may find it helpful to hear a beep when they make a mistake, users in Japan may find a beep embarrassing, in that it calls attention to their mistakes. If there are any doubts regarding the hidden meaning of some symbols, it is better to use words instead.



  1. Consistency

The translations used throughout the site must be consistent with the terminology used throughout all product components, i.e. marketing materials, software, help, documentation, etc.


  1. Leveraging text

When translations have been approved they should be stored and re-used in later components/versions/products. This decreases turn-around time, reduces the translation effort and increases consistency. The usage of Computer-Aided Translation (CAT) tools is recommended in this task.


  1. Text embedded in graphics, video or animations.

Where possible, the use of text in graphics, video or animations is discouraged. Most localisable visuals consist of text on top of some sort of structured background. To localise any text in them,it is necessary to get access to the textual part of the visual. Localisable visuals should be handed off in a package that supports “layering” so that the text portion of the visual is on a separate layer and easily accessible for translation. If textembedded files are necessary, the designers should create a well-documented, layered source file with details of the fonts and colours used, keeping in mind that text within the graphic is probably longer for localised languages than for English so room for text to expand should be allowed.


  1. Sort order
    Sort order is not the same for all languages, particularly for languages that do not use the Western alphabet. In Swedish, for example, some extended characters (e.g. å) get sorted after the letter Z. In many Asian cultures, characters are comprised by a prescribed tradition of brushstrokes and characters are sorted by the brush stroke order. Also, after localisation, the first letter of the word might change, changing its position in the sort order list. To build an internationalised Web site, it is necessary to either find a way to automatically sort the items (this can be a very difficult task) or ensure that the localisers can change the sort order of the list while they are localising the code. The optimal method for the end user is to allow the translator to personally sort the list.


  1. Quality assurance.

A linguist must check the translated site after it has been built. If the site is interactive, all functionality should be tested.


  1. Locale-specific content.

The following list provides some of the items that would need to be changed during localisation. These items are often hard-coded but should, where possible, use the system settings for the user‟s environment.

– Date formats (including calendar settings and day/month names)

– Time formats (12-hour vs. 24-hour clock etc.)

– Currency formats and other monetary-related information (taxes etc.)

– Number formats (decimal separator, thousand separator etc.)

– Fonts (names, sizes etc.)

For fonts, it is best practice to use Cascading Style Sheets (CSS) whenever

possible. CSS allow fonts to be changed for all the pages in one place, and there will be fewer tags within the text for the localisers to sift through.

Other issues for consideration, which may not have formatting rules specified by the user‟s environment include:

– Address formats (postal codes, provinces, states etc.)

– Name formats (2 surnames in Spanish speaking countries, for instance)

– Telephone number formats

– Units of measure

– Paper sizes

– Use of colour for meaning (e.g. red = stop)

Implementation of RooBar / Internal analysis


  • Implementation of RooBar / Internal analysis deadline 8 April

Responsibilities: Steven, Chia, Alfonso and Daan

Analysis RooBar website. How far/in what way is the website localised now? (looking
at criteria given in chapter 2: localisation)



In this chapter, an analysis how RooBar is localising its website to the Dutch Market is going to be analyzed. Literatures from the previous chapter are applied and used in this section of the report.

3.2. Language

When looking at the website of RooBar; it can be said that the website is well developed in terms of translation. It offers a variety of up to 4 languages. This makes it user-friendly for anyone to be able to understand what is written on their webpage.


As part of the project, we will be looking at the Dutch market and therefore will look at different factors that determine consumers buying behaviour. The website offers the possibility to convert all the information that is written on the webpage to be converted in the native language of the country which is Dutch. This can be very convenient for dutch born households. The Netherlands is a very international country where many citizens live with different nationalities due to its high involvement in international trade with other countries. RooBar has taken this into consideration and in order to still attract these types of customer; RooBar offers these households to still visit the english version of their website. According to the Etnologue report, it is the third most spoken language in the world. (

Bringing over the information to the dutch market will therefore not be a nuisance as this has been taken into consideration by the RooBar team. In addition about 90% of the population are able to communicate in English according to the European Commission report of 2012.(

Furtermore, this aspect will also not be a problem for the the young population as english is a mandatory class in the education system of the Netherlands. (

3.3. Domain Name System 


The Domain Name System that has been used for the website of RooBar is ‘’.com’’. It is one of the most frequent used first-level-domain nowadays. From a psychological point of view; most households expect top brands to have such a domain name for their website. Companies in the Netherlands use ‘’.nl’ in the Netherlands but do not mind using ‘’.com’’. By having this, it gives RooBar an advantage as this would give the consumers the impression that the company is large in its operating market. When switching to the Dutch version, there does not seem to be any error occuring. The website translates everything very quickly which makes it very pleasant for the user. There does not arise any conflicting and disturbing contents that hinders or insult the dutch culture. Competitors such as Twix have seperate websites for the Dutch market.

3.4. Legal certified

From the legal point of view; RooBar has the ncessary and appropriate certificates to be able to distribute its product in the Netherlands. Additionally, the organization complies with the European regulations and therefore can sell in whole of Europe. This information is noted on their website where the consumer.

RooBar is a very transparant company. They publish every Transparancyinformation except financial data to the public. These are for example legal documents such as certifications, company team information as well product recipe ingredients. In some cases; RooBar even offers consumers the possibility to download their certifications as proof that they have complied with the regulations. Dutch people like transparancy and it can work at the benefit of the company as other companies such as Twix bars does not do this. 

Digital Shopper Relevancy

Capgemini Digital Shopper Relevancy Report 2014:

The way that consumers behave and shop is changing significantly. Nowadays shoppers have a multitude of new options at their disposal to find the perfect solution for their personal wants and needs. Furthermore, the psychology of their decision-making is also changing, with the use of new sets of criteria to guide their purchasing, and their loyalty to any one of 1,000s of different consumer brands being stretched and strained.

Capgemini has conducted research on the behaviour of consumers to get a bette understanding what the reasons are that makes households purchase on the web. The research conducted was made through questionnaires in 18 different countries. Some of these include Australia, Brazil, China and UK. From each country, about 1,000 people who have at least bought products were asked to fill in the form. Different topics from different industries were asked in order to get a representable sample.

1. Social media: overhyped?


Consumers consider social media to be a less important part of their customer journey (from awareness to post-sale activity) compared with conventional retail store experience, Internet, email, smartphone apps, or the use of technologies in-store. The use of social media is most relevant in the ‘awareness’ and ‘choice’ phases of shopping journeys, but much less in ‘transaction, delivery and post-sales’ stages.
A striking fact is that the importance of the smartphone, as a digital channel, by contrast has grown in importance.

What to do?

The research suggests that retailers and CP companies still have work to do at every stage of the purchasing journey if they are going to convince customers that social media has a useful, valuable role in buying a product or service.

Retailers and CP companies should take a realistic and pragmatic view of the return any investment in social media is likely to make. Social media certainly has its place in an advisory capacity and needs to be proactively managed, but we would caution against an over-reliance on its ability to enhance the overall customer experience.


2. Physical store reigns


When carrying out retail transactions, 72% of respondents identify the store as important or very important compared to 67% for the Internet (except for electronics).
Different channels are preferred by consumers at different points along the shopper journey. While the shop is still king when transacting, the Internet is now preferred globally, for finding product and promotion information and choosing what products to buy.


3. Digitally-savvy high-growth markets

High-growth markets all show a significantly stronger preference for digital technologies than mature markets:

High-growth markets Mature markets
High use of mobile apps and social media for online shopping
Look for rewards and to recommend that retailer is they receive one Less likely to be high-frequency, socially active digital shoppers
Provide retailers with their personal data to enhance the shopping process Security and privacy doubts have not receded, with techno-shy shoppers still very evident, especially in the European markets
Predict physical shops are turning into showrooms Using the Internet as a well-established technology throughout the shopping process, while their usage of other digital technologies and social media is less prevalent
Expect deliveries to be made seperately at their own convenience
Regards bar code as very important to search for information, choose and compare products Expecting clear price information, a number of payment options, digital receipts, delivery tracking, and product return flexibility.

What to do?

In the high-growth market is a significant opportunity for brands present in, or expanding into, these regions to use the digital channels that are obviously resonating with consumers in these countries.
There is currently a willingness by consumers to openly engage with retailers and brands and the industry should ensure that it does not squander this dynamic momentum. However, in the mature markets, companies need to be aware of the greater resistance and be more transparent and intelligent than ever about how they engage with customers, to ensure the trust and engagement of mature markets shoppers.


4. No ‘One’ Digital Shopper


With the proliferation of digital channels and a proactive stance to engaging with customers taken by retailers and CP manufacturers, the task of profiling shoppers has become more layered and complex. Key factors influencing the experience and requirements of digital shoppers include age, gender, product category, journey phase, attitudes and expectations towards technology, and market maturity.

Digital Shopper profiles in the Mature Markets:

  • Socially-Engaged Digital Shoppers (41%): Heavy users of digital technologies and comfortable using social media. The group is relaxed entrusting its data to retailers and using all channels to research products.
  • Value-Conscious Digital Shoppers (29%): This group prefers in-store shopping, but is comfortable using the Internet and email as part of the purchasing journey. They are less comfortable using smartphones, tablets and social media.
  • True Digital Shoppers (19%): This group purchases online the most frequently of any other in the mature market segment. True Digital Shoppers use apps to compare products, track delivery and are happy sacrificing personal data for customized deals.
  • Reluctant Digital Shoppers (11%): This group is not comfortable using technology and typically shies away from it. They prefer purchasing from physical stores versus online and avoid social media and smartphone as shopping channels.

Digital Shopper profiles in the High-growth Markets:

  • Interactive Digital Shoppers (50%): Interactive Shoppers are at ease shopping across all digital technologies, are regular online shoppers, and love retailers that embrace technology like QR codes and mobile apps.
  • Technophile Digital Shoppers (27%): This group has willingly adopted digital technology and makes online purchases regularly. Although they trust retailers with their personal information, they like the opportunity to opt in and out of notifications.
  • Digitally-Indifferent Shoppers (23%): This group is uninterested in digital technologies like smartphone and mobile apps, and prefers stores. They are comfortable sharing personal information with retailers, but not through social media channels.


5. The Privacy Issue



Consumers are much more aware of the ownership and value of their data and issues of data privacy. Globally, over 28% of respondents feel strongly that they currently are not being provided with clear notice, choice and control of how their personal data is collected, used and shared by retailers.

What to do?

Creating mutual value is certainly key to improved digital engagement and in establishing and retaining trust. Initiatives such as that of the development of the Consumer Engagement Principles by the Consumer Goods Forum are CP companies can bridge this ‘trust gap’ and ensure a balance between the looking to develop a common approach to improve the way the retail and values of the different stakeholders; consumer, society and business.


6. Fashion showing the way


The fashion category shows an increase of 9% of consumers having purchased a product online in the last 6 months, up to 61% in 2014 from 52% in 2012. More than half purchased electronics, 44% bought health products, and 3 in 10 food online.


How are you going to incorporate it in your with report ?

Customer analysis is one of the most important factor of every company. In order to conclude strategy, key findings of research need to be aware.



As social media plays an important role in only for awareness and choice of purchasing journey, Roobar need to focus on raising awareness in social media. It should be advertised about its advantages which may include benefits such as nutrient or how Roobar effect to people’s body . Moreover, investment on social media need to be carefully managed to make it profitable.


Despite preference on retail store, people rely on internet as finding product and promotion information. Roobar is in the niche market which benefit of product needs to be realized. Internet would play an important role in providing information of product benefits. However, different social medias and channels are preferred in each region. Roobar should provide information on the most effective channel.



It is important for Roobar to aware of the opportunity in the high-growth market. Regular barcode could be used for searching for information; however, each preference on technology is different among each country. Deeper analysis need to be done in order to localize business model



In each country might have different kinds of shopper profiles which need to be analyze individually.

4. Determining Markets & customers to look at

In this section, we will analyze the customers of Roo’Bar. Through target segmentation and looking at the target groups; we get a better undersanding of RooBar’s business model. We also can get a better understanding of the revenue model of the company. In addition to this, we will look at the various markets in which Roo’Bar is currently active and look at what there strategies in these types of markets are.


From the interview, we can understand that Roo’Bar is a Bulgarian company that have been very succesful with the sales of their organic enery bar. Having started in Bulgaria 5 years back; Roo’Bar is now offering its products in many European countries (45). These include Germany, the Netherlands, the UK and many more.

They produce the prodcuts in the country itself. The bars consisting exclusively of raw, organic, vegan and gluten-free ingredients. Some ingredients are more difficult to come by and it is for this reason that Roo’Bar imports some of this from countries such as SA and Tunisia.

Roo’Bar main goal is to deliver organic snacks to consumers who want to live a healthy lifestyle. They understand it is very difficult to find a nutricious and at the same time organic product at a shop. The product has become popular among atlethes due to not having preserved ingredients and at the same time give them energy to power their day.

RooBar Logo

Even though Roo’Bar is operating in various countries; they would preferably see high units of sales some countries instead of small units of sales in multiple countries. They believe this way the brand can have a high market share. Therefore it can be concluded that at the present moment; RooBar’s current strategy is to expose its brands in as many countries as possible. They would like to shift this into mass sales in some countries only in order for the brand to be well known among households.

We are going to anaylze the strategies of Roo’Bars in 3 countries in which they are operating as well as there customers in these countries. We believe that Germany is going to be one of this as it is one of the biggest distributors of Roo’Bar. The company does many businesses with Germany and therefore this country should be taken into consideration. Most of their revenues are generated in Germany. Germany is the wealthiest country in Europe when looking at GDP according to the International Monetary Fund. In addition to this, it is also the most populous state in the European Union and most migration destination in Europe.

GermanyTheNetherlands Bulgaria

Since we are in the Netherlands, we believe we can observe and make our analysis even more realistic if the Netherlands is being looked at. We can look at the behaviours of the consumers as well as look at how the product is being marketed and perceived.

Roo’Bar does not have offices outside of Bulgaria. They export their products to distributors who then sell their products. Therefore in order to know the business model of Roo’Bar best and see how this has triggered the owners into expanding we believe that Bulgaria should also be taken into consideration.



Project Lay-out

“A critical analysis of Roo’Bar strategies of localisation of their online presence.

1. Introduction

2. What is Roo’bar and what are their goals?

Introduction of the company Roo’bar, the companies values and their goals. Generate a SWOT-analysis and a Confrontation Matrix. 5 S’s objectives.

3. What is localization?

A literature study of localization via website, website design and website personalization.

4. Determine Market & customers

Which strategic markets is the project group going to target for the critical analysis (based on video). Who are the customers in these markets. (3 or 4 strategic markets)(Germany/Scandinavia)(STOP&SIT model)

5. What is Roo’bar current image in these strategic markets?

An analysis of Roo’bars current image based on website views, key phrases and web design. What is Their Online Value Proposition? (the way-back machine)

6. Who are Roo’bars competitors in these strategic markets?

An analysis of Roo’bars competitors web presence? (1 or 2 per strategic market)

7. What is, based on previous research questions, an ideal state of Roo’bars web presence & localization?

Based on the customers, strategic market, literature study and competitors web presence. What improvements can be made on Roo’bars web presence and localization. (marketing mix 8 P’s)( Communication mix, Contact plan, Content plan)

8. Conclusion & Recommendations 

9. Summary




Localisation and Internationalisation

In order to localize a product it is very important to find out if it is internationalized. Confused? An internationalized Product/application design is the one that can accommodate localized content such as characters in non-western letters, double byte languages, ability for text to expand as in European languages and contract as in Asian languages, display Unicode characters and have database that supports Unicode characters etc.

We will discuss both localization and internationalization below in detail.

What is Localization Testing?

Localization is defined as making a product, application or document content adaptable to meet the cultural, lingual and other requirements of a specific region or a locale.

Localization is abbreviated as l10n, where 10 is the number of letters between l and n. When thought of localization, what comes to mind is that the user interface and documentation of an application is in a specific language or locale. But localization is more than just that.

When localizing an application, the following important areas are to be customized:

  • Date and time formats (including numeric formats)
  • Currency used
  • Keyboard usage
  • Sorting, aligning and collating data
  • Colors schemes, symbols and icons
  • Text and graphics which, in a given culture, may be viewed as sensitive or can be misinterpreted.
  • Diverse legal requirements

The main aim of localization is to make the product look and feel such that, to the target audience, it looks like it is specially created to meet their needs.

Localization and internationalization are together referred to as globalization. Globalization is at a broader level. Internationalization is making the application such that it supports multiple languages/locales. Localization is making an application support a particular locale and language.

The following figure will help you understand how localization and internationalization together make a globalized a software application.


What is Internationalization?

Internationalization is the process of designing and developing a product, application or document content such that it enables localization for any given culture, region, or language.

Internationalization is also written i18n, where 18 is the number of letters between I and n in the word internationalization.

Internationalization typically entails:

  1. Designing and developing the application such that it simplifies the deployment of localization and internationalization of the application. This includes taking care of proper rendering of characters in various languages, string concatenation etc. which can be done by using Unicode during development
  2. Taking care of the big picture while developing the application in order to support bidirectional text or for identifying languages we need to add markup in out DTD. Also, we use CSS, to support vertical text or other non-Latin typographic features.
  3. Code should be able to support local and regional language and also other cultural preferences. This involves using predefined localization data and features from existing libraries. Date time formats, local calendar holidays, numeric formats, data presentation, sorting, data alignment, name and address displaying format etc.
  4. Making localizable elements separate from the source code so that code is independent. And then as per user’s requirement, localized content can be loaded based on their preferences.

Internationalization basically consists of design and development of an application to make it ready for localization. It is not necessary that language, culture and region related translation takes place. It is to make an application ready for migration in a later stage if, localization is to take place.

The following diagram will help explain the difference between nationalization and internationalization.

(Click on the image for enlarged view)



Let’s summarize the difference between localization and internationalization in the below table:

Localization Testing Internationalization Testing
1. Localization is defined as making a product, application or document content adaptable to meet the cultural, lingual and other requirements of a specific region or a locale. 1. Internationalization is the process of designing and developing a product, application or document content such that it enables localization.
2. Localization is referred as l10n 2. Internationalization is referred as i18n
3. Localization focuses on online help, GUI context, dialog boxes, error messages, read me/ tutorials, user manuals, release notes, installation guide etc. 3. Internationalization focuses on compatibility testing, functionality testing, interoperability testing, usability testing, installation testing, user interface validation testing.
4. Localization itself means a specific local language for any given region 4. Application code is independent of language
5. Localization is not at user interface level 5. Internationalization is at design level

Scope of Testing

Major focal points to be considered for localization and internationalization testing are as follows:

1) Language

  • Unicode text to cater to character encoding
  • Number systems
  • Writing directions
  • Spelling variants
  • Capitalization and sorting rules
  • Keyboard shortcuts and layouts

2) Culture and region

  • Names and titles
  • Government numbers (Social Security number is USA) and passports
  • Colors and images
  • Telephone numbers, zip codes, Address formats
  • Paper sizes
  • Weights and measures
  • Currency symbol and currency market position

3) Dates and important Events

  • Date and time formats
  • Calendar types (Gregorian, Lunar etc.)
  • Number formats (decimal separators, grouping of digits etc.)

Testing Best Practices for testing Internationalization

Various areas are impacted when an application is internationalized. In order to ensure complete testing coverage, we need to concentrate our testing on following important aspects.

#1) Content localization

Localized content includes graphics as well as text. Static and dynamic content displayed in the interface. Static contents like Tabs, buttons, labels and nomenclatures of web elements, Welcome message, help text, tool tip etc.

Dynamic contents like the message displayed when a form is filled, validation message in case of errors or mandatory field not populate other user specific messages etc. This kind of language testing is done by either language experts or is verified against language specific properties file sent by the client which contains English to another language word meaning mappings.

#2) Feature based

Depending on the region some features are available and some are not. Testers need to ensure the feature is hidden for the region to whom it is not applicable and should be displayed and functional for the regional users to whom it is applicable.

#3) Locale/ Culture awareness

Locale/ Cultural awareness includes understanding the difference between Dates and number formatting used in various regions. This includes Calendar differences, holidays and festivals, Date formatting, time formatting, Currency, Number formatting, address, telephone numbers, zip codes or no zip codes, units of measurements etc.

Since we are dealing with different locale data conversion from one encoding format to other must happen. Very good understanding of encoding formats and converting to and from a format is crucial as it can also result in data loss.

#4) User Interface

User interface should be tested for adaptability to all language content. It should change accordingly to accommodate text with larger lengths without distorting the alignment.

Some language specific text takes more space than others, so interface should be able to adapt to this change without getting distorted. For Example, German text takes more space to convey the same information in comparison to English. Hence, interface should be adaptable.

We need to test user interface of an application to ensure it contains no defects like truncated strings, overlapping or misaligned controls, duplicate hotkeys, etc. Also, everything needs to be translated in the respective language.

This includes the following:

  • Menus in menu bar
  • Prompt, alert and warning message
  • Dialog boxes (titles, buttons and help messages)
  • Images
  • Toolbars (tool tip for tools in Tool bar)
  • Status info in Status bar

#5) Rendering

It is important to check whether all the supported scripts are correctly displayed according to the language specific characters associated with them. When viewing a page in a specific language the scripts should get properly executed i.e. no script error should be displayed as well all the characters should be displayed in the specific language.

Various characteristics of character rendering include bi-direction, shaping as per context, reordering and combining characters. Others include word break, line break, formatting like a justification or left/right alignment etc.

#6) File transfer

If the application includes a file transfer operation, we need to test whether a file transfer interface is localized according to the language selected. File is getting transferred successfully or not and transferred file is not corrupted.

It is important to specify the encoding format while reading a file that contains Unicode characters. Default encoding is UTF-8, when nothing is specified. Text files which are saved in encoding format UTF-16 when read using UTF -8 will display unintelligible text. Hence encoding plays a very important role in file transfers.

#7) Database

Database testing for internationalized application will consist of support of Unicode characters in the database. Special data types are available for this purpose. Data types like nchar, nvarchar and ntext are defined by SQL server that helps store Unicode characters.

The n prefix stands for National Unicode data types. These n prefixed data types are used in the same way as the original char, varchar and text data types. The only difference is n prefix data type also support the following:

  • More disk space is needed
  • More characters are supported
  • Maximum size of nchar and nvarchar is 4000 but for char and varchar is 8000

Working with N-prefix data types is same as regular ones. Care must be taken during database migration. Proper data types should be mapped during migration or data will get lost.



Strategy Formulation

As internet marketing has a lot of elements of marketing strategy, you can base your digital marketing strategy on most of these principles. The first 4 decisions are concerned in how to deliver value to the customer on the internet platform. Which products and which market to focus are also being formulated in these stages.

Ansoff Matrix

Decision 1: Market Penetration and product development strategies.

The internet platform offers companies the unique opportunity to better compete with its competitors.

  • If its strategy is Market penetration: This means that a company wants to sell more of its existing product in the same market; it can use the internet 1) to gain more market share by making their websites more efficient such as converting visitors to sales 2) improve customer loyalty and 3) improve it customer value by offering competitive online prices or discounts.

Nike plus

  • Market development. The benefit of the internet gives organization the opportunity to enter new markets with existing products due to its low cost such as low advertising costs as well as capturing bigger segments of clients. Some examples are RS Components a supplier of a range of MRO (maintenance, repair and operations) items, found a new online market when they launcher their site, with 10% of their web-based sales to individual consumers rather than traditional business customers. It also uses the website to offer additional facilities for customers placing large orders online. The UK retailer Argos found the opposite was true with 10% of website sales being from businesses when their traditional market was consumer-based. EasyJet also has a section of its website to serve business customers.
  • If its strategy is to develop it products or in other words bring new products in existing markets; the internet offers them 1) the possibility to add new values such as self-customized products 2) develop digital products such as Spotify 3)change payment models such as subscriptions and 4) increasing product range.


Spotify has subscriptions where  one can listen offline to music by downloading the playlist. It also offers them the opportunity to listen online with wi-fi as well as giving information about the artists and recommendations. You can choose to pay have a monthly subscription or buy the gift cards.

Make your own Nike

Make your own nike. Adding value to existing products by making the product more personal.

  • A firm can decide to enter a completely new market and offering new products. This is called diversification. Airline companies use this a lot now where they offer next to airline ticket also the possibility to rent cars or rent hotel rooms. Some of these come in combinations.



Decision 2: Business and Revenue Models Strategies

Companies need to constantly evaluate their business models as well as revenue models in order to stay competitive and to be able to survive in this new digital age. The internet has made it easier for consumers to have the opportunity to explore different competitors and compare products. Therefore it is crucial to review the business model from time to time.  A business model is a summary of how a company is going to generate its revenues, stating its products, target groups and value added services.

It is fair to say that in most cases business models are usually adjusted. The model how a company earns its revenues can in the past be very effective but in the present be contagious. In addition, the internet has open an opportunity to gain additional revenues through for example through advertising or e-commerce. Companies can be radical with their revenue models or far less reaching. Both of them has proved to be worthwhile such as selling advertising space or gain commission.

Different types of ads

Advertisements is a very useful source of revenues nowadays for internet marketeers. There are different types of ads such as Display, Search, Text, Paid content, Email and much more.

Decision 5: Social Media Strategy

Social media is one the most powerful marketing tools currently. If used correctly you can build a relationship with the potential customers of the company. To benefit from the social media there should be a clear strategy involved that takes into account what you’re trying to achieve, and to identify you’re customers.

Understanding your goals

By understanding your goals, it is about what you want to reach with social media, because social media can be used for more purposes. It could be that you want to have increase your sales, or increase the website usage.


For the goals you have set, you at least need objectives of what you want to reach which your goals you have set. For example, if you want to increase brand awareness, your objective might be how much times your company is mentioned on social media.


A successful social media strategy is all about targeting the right people with the right message. You have to understand your customers about what they want to see from you on social media and what they expect from you. You have to find out the right customer and how to reach them. For example on Instagram it means you have to use the right hashtags to find the right target group,


When you have your competitors on social media, you can look with what works for them, and what does not work for them and from that point you can differentiate yourself from the competitors to have a better strategy. You can use your competitors as a benchmark.


The message should be original and creative enough for your potential customers and it should be different then your competitors. The message should be understandable for the potential customers, they should understand it and agree about it.


The channel you use is important because some social media platforms are meant for something else, for example LinkedIn is more business to business, and for job search, while Instagram is about sharing photo’s with a message behind it.

 Decision 6: Multichannel distribution strategy

Direct Distribution

This type of distribution is mainly online and the company offers his products through a website.The customers have no physical touch with the products, therefore there has to be an other value added to the product. Mainly customers buy online because it offers convenience, and there is always an online ´help´ option. They can buy the products online at anytime, even at midnight hours. Therefore there is an added value created with the online distribution system, and it might be more efficient for the customers.

Indirect Distribution

With this type of distribution more people can have access to influence the customer, also it adds value by giving the customer an experience to the product, a sales force can come in action if you know that the customer will be highly profitable, if he will re-purchase the product. It could be less efficient than direct distribution, however there is an added value to it, which can compromise the efficiency. It creates more loyalty with the customer, than with a direct distribution system.

There are various ways of indirect distribution channels:

  • Salesforce
  • Retailers
  • Wholesalers to Retailers to Customers

Decision 7: Multichannel Communication strategy

For a communication strategy there must be one single voice through every communication channel to customers to have one unified voice. An unified voice creates an overall better customer experience.

If there is a communication between the business and customer you should be able to track your customers to finally understand them better and knowing what it takes to attract them. By tracking customer profiles you can analyze their lifestyles. So you can have a more personalized approach to the customers. If you can know how to engage the customers with a message of knowing their customer preferences. The customer should get a message that is interesting. Every customer should be on the same page, so businesses can create a stronger customer engagement.

What is Localization?

HELLO in eight different languages

According to Chaffey, LOCALIZATION is the tailoring of web site information for individual countries or regions. But it is more than just translating. To be able to successfully introduce a website on a foreign market in the current pace of globalization, it is necessary to adapt to the linguistic, technical and cultural aspects of the foreign target market.

Culturally adapted web sites reduce the amount of required cognitive efforts from visitors of the site to process information, making navigation easier and attitudes toward the web site more favorable.

Website localization involves adapting any text being used into the language of the foreign target market. It is important that translation of information is ‘clear and understandable’ to avoid cultural misunderstanding or offense. In order to translate, the ‘target culture’ must be known.

Actual localization
Culturally adapted web sites reduce the amount of required cognitive efforts from visitors of the site to process information, making navigation easier and attitudes toward the web site more favorable.
To ensure that the adaption of textual material, visual displays, illustrations and graphics are appropriate for the target locale, adjustments must be implemented.

This involves making sure that the software being used is fully compatible with the technology of the country in question. Among the technical elements which can be localized are: date and time, currency, numbers, address and telephone numbers, units of measure and connection speed.

Displaying dates and times in the preferred local formats is also recommended as it avoids confusion and allows for an improved user experience.

An obvious example of this is the difference between UK and US date formats. If your site promises to deliver goods on 11/12/13 then UK users would expect this to be 11 December 2013, while American users would think the delivery date is 12 November 2013.

Similarly, in Japan, the date is written with the year first, then month, then day, so presenting the date as shown above to a Japanese user would make them think their goods were being delivered in 2011.

Users in different countries also have different payment preferences. For instance, iDeal is the preferred payment method of online buyers in the Netherlands while users in China prefer Alipay, Tenpay and many prefer to pay cash on delivery.