Why You Should Translate Apps to Spanish | Bilingua Franca

Here’s Why You Should Translate Your Apps To Spanish

Consumers in the U.S. are increasingly spending more and more of their time on mobile apps. Over the last five years, there has been an incredibly rapid growth of smart phones that have resulted in the creation of an app-driven market. This has developed a perfect opportunity for marketers to connect with this new breed of consumers by creating chic and interesting apps to capture their audience.

Hispanics & Mobile Devices
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Two things are in mind when brands and startups create apps:

  1. Gaining a large following through downloads
  2. Profitability from their apps

The U.S is a cultural melting pot for individuals from across the globe. According to the Total Audience Report by Nielsen, U.S. bilingual Hispanics are the most prominent when it comes to smartphone usage, spending more than 14 hours a week on their devices. Additionally, they have high levels of satisfaction with their devices and carriers making them less likely to jump ship, and more likely stick to the brands they like and are familiar with.

With a reasonable investment, brands and startups can localize their apps and, in essence, increase the number of downloads which would otherwise never have been discovered due to language barrier. This is supported by research that shows that Hispanics prefer to use apps that are in their native language and are actually willing to spend a lot more with their localized version of an app.

By 2020, the projected Hispanic population growth will account for more than half of the U.S population and their current expenses of over $1.4 trillion will only continue to grow exponentially. With this in mind, brands and
startups cannot afford to leave this group out of the equation. 36893013_s

What better way to capture this demographic than with the development of multilingual mobile apps that include Spanish as one of their core languages? Or better yet, US Spanish for Hispanic Americans? Without a doubt, this group of super consumers provides a huge opportunity for those outside of the marketing industry across the globe. Whether they are carriers, devices, or apps, it is becoming increasingly necessary to take the bull by the horns and capture this demographic.

While Hispanics are the most engaged consumers with mobile devices, there is a general feeling that not many brands and startups are actually going the extra mile to make sure that their apps are easily accessible to Spanish speaking consumers. Brands that are not actively seeking new ways to target this demographic run the risk of losing this highly engaged, and expanding consumer group.

Hispanic consumers have been seen to have a high propensity for the adoption of mobile technology as opposed to non-Hispanics. A number of explanations have led us to understand this data including: mobile lifestyle, affordable and accessible technology, cheaper mediums of communication, cost effective entertainment, and privacy concerns.

Statistics On Device Usage

Below are a couple of statistics to show the uptake of mobile technology by the Hispanic group:

  • 65% of Hispanic consumers check their banking balance, pay their bills or make transactions from their mobile devices as contrasted with 53% of non-Hispanics.
  • 25% of Hispanics use mobile apps to download coupons that are redeemable at brick and mortar stores compared to only 17% of non-Hispanics.
  • 24% of Hispanic consumers use mobile devices to pay for goods and services for an in-store transaction compared to 13% of non-Hispanic consumers.

With the growing interest in location based targeting, it follows that Hispanics may be more welcoming to the idea of opting for geo-targeted promos and campaigns.

While targeting communities and locations that are predominantly Hispanic may work, the real deal is geo-targeting through mobile telephony. Due to an upwardly mobile lifestyle, targeting Hispanics using location-based apps will provide insight as to which places are visited, where they go, and what they do. This data gathered using location-based apps is more like the concept of cookies for desktops and is a very powerful online marketing tool to get to the Hispanic demographic. Due care should however be exercised so as not to invade consumers’ privacy.

When all is said and done, it begs the question as to which parts of an app should be translated and localized to Spanish. Should the translation include solely content, or product descriptions? To provide the best possible user experience and maximize sales, it is apt to have the entirety of the app translated, not just the primary content. Emphasis should be placed on your user experience in order to increase recurring visits, and a loyal customer base. In catering to a large and growing demographic like Spanish speakers and bilingual Hispanic Americans, many companies will have the opportunity to maximize their full range of profitability this way.

Many of us are in constant exposure to Spanish, bilingual, or even Spanglish advertisements…

  • How do you feel about mobile apps entirely translated to Spanish?
  • As a user, how would you change your spending habits if mobile apps were or were not translated to Spanish?


Let us know in the comments section!

Pablo V.
Founder of Bilingua Franca. Pablo holds a BA in Sociology and works as an Organic SEO Strategist for an agency in Phoenix. He is a study abroad enthusiast, a lover of deep and meaningful conversations, and is always fascinated to understand how things work. His passions include culture, language, human behavior, and astronomy.

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