Why English adaptation is your key to entering the UK market

An excellent guiding principle when entering a new geographical market – no matter how similar it may appear on the surface to your home market – is not to underestimate the need for a tailored approach that respects local consumers’ needs and preferences.

Text by Max Naylor


Image: © Image: © Rawf8/istockphoto.com

Thanks to the status of the English language as the world’s lingua franca, the needs of native British English speakers can sometimes be neglected in the UK market entry process. If you’re a U.S.-based company launching, e.g., a new app, translating your user interface into French, German and Spanish for your European launch is a no-brainer. But what about English?

In this typical expansion model, English is often overlooked. As Brits understand – or think they understand – American English with ease, what’s the incentive to localize your product for the UK market? Many new entrants make the mistake of thinking that there’s little value in UK localization.

Traditionally, many software companies haven’t invested in localizing their product for the UK market. British users were used to seeing Microsoft Word offering options to change the font color or center text. In recent years, ...