Multi-language support not part of (my) minimum viable product

I’ve been putting a lot of effort in keeping my modeling portal bilingual until now but stats don’t lie and tell me that multi-language support is not part of my “minimum viable product“.  For instance, more than 90% of the RSS subscribers in the portal follow the English version of the feed (instead, around 20% of the visitors come from Spanish-speaking countries).

Therefore, if I want to maximize the impact (and of course the visibility) of the portal and the services I offered there, I should focus on providing more content and less on providing Spanish versions of that content. Playing the “language” card  in a portal like mine does not seem to pay off. Of course, this changes if you sell products to other “customer” profiles but software developers are too used to read and use English tools to factor this in when deciding which product to buy.

Not providing multi-language support does not mean that you should not design your product with that in mind so that adding language support in the future does not imply any major challenge (just the definition of new language resource files with the appropriate translations)!

if you liked this post please consider following my thoughts on twitter and visit my other projects: the modeling languages portal, wordpress <-> drupal migration services and my research rants.

3 thoughts on “Multi-language support not part of (my) minimum viable product

  1. Well, in IT world, most of us are used to reading English, and it usually is more accurate that “weird” and late translations..

    Probably a “product” in a field other than IT would be different…
    Saludos

  2. Totally agree. If my site was about selling clothes I’d have for sure localized versions of the site. As always the problem is to know for your specific product if it’s worth or not. For instance, for my new product (http://wordpressdrupal.com/ ) I’m still hesitating. I’ll probably try to provide a Spanish version for it. Maybe it has nothing to do but I’ve had clients from many countries but all of them english-speaking countries (or countries where it’s already know that the English level is really high)

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