#LocalizationMatters How @Invoice2go boosted their ROI with localization

Greater than 8 minutes, my friend!

Howdy friends!

For the past few months the wonderful Eleonora Angelici and I have been working on exciting new interview series designed for startups, developers, language lovers and everyone interested in localization.

This fun little project is aptly called Localization Matters. ☺️

We hope that you’ll enjoy reading those interviews and that the stories that we’ll share will bring a lot of value to the global localization community.

So, please, don’t forget to share and use our hashtag #LocalizationMatters

Your comments are also appreciated! 😉

Hugs from Canada and Italy!

Dmitry and Eleonora

invoice2go logo

Localization Matters: Interview with Invoice2go

Today we’re talking with Melanie Heighway.

As Localization manager at Invoice2go, Melanie works closely with all teams across the business to better serve Invoice2go’s international user base.

She has worked at leading language, medical device and technology companies in Australia and the UK on both client and language supplier sides. She holds a degree in International Studies majoring in Japanese and Mandarin and is currently trying her hand at learning French.

Melanie has a passion for travelling, learning new languages and being outdoors – particularly for a hike or a swim at the beach!

[clickToTweet tweet=”Discover how @Invoice2go approaches localization. Read the interview with Melanie Heighway on @OpenMicXL8 #xl8 #t9n #LocalizationMatters” quote=”Discover how @Invoice2go approaches localization. Read the interview with Melanie Heighway on @OpenMicXL8 #xl8 #t9n #LocalizationMatters”]

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Thank you so much for agreeing to do this interview, Melanie. We’re thrilled to have you here! Can you please tell us a little bit about Invoice2go? Why did you build it and who is it for?


Melanie Heighway from invoice2go

Invoice2go is an easy-to-use mobile app that provides a simple way for any small business to send professional invoices, track expenses and receive payments on the spot, from a computer, tablet or smartphone.

Small and micro business owners across all industries—from electricians and architects to caterers and fitness trainers—use Invoice2go to create and send invoices, ensuring quick and accurate payment for their professional services.

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Great idea! Simplifying accounting and expense tracking is key to running your business efficiently. When and why did you decide to localize Ulysses into other languages and what languages did you choose?


Melanie Heighway from invoice2go

We began localizing the Invoice2go app almost 5 years ago as we know small business owners around the world all face the same challenge of needing to easily create invoices on the go to ultimately get paid faster.

We also noticed our app was generating particular interest in Western Europe, so we initially launched localization in French, German, Italian, Spanish and Dutch. We now support over ten languages, and are working on supporting more languages in the near future.

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Wow! Congrats on adding so many languages. We think your customers really appreciate the effort. How did you choose your language services provider? Did you hire freelancers? Did you go with an agency or crowdsourcing? How did you find them and what was your selection criteria?


Melanie Heighway from invoice2go

Invoice2go works with a blend of freelance translators, in-country LSPs and third party quality assurance companies. One thing we’re conscious of when searching for translators is that app localization is quite specific and our app is designed to be user friendly and not too heavy in accounting terminology.

With this criteria in mind, we’ve spent some time sourcing a core team of freelance translators with solid years of translation experience. We generally turn to international translator association databases to find new translators as well as reaching out to contacts in the industry for referrals.

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Association databases and referrals sounds like a perfect combo! What are the biggest challenges you face with localization? What are some of the things you’ve learnt along the way about the process of translation and localization that you didn’t know before?


Melanie Heighway from invoice2go

The biggest challenge I face managing localization at Invoice2go is turning around localization to meet target app release and feature rollout dates. Our Product and Engineering team work swiftly on improving and updating our app, and I need to ensure the localized product keeps up with this.

One key lesson I’ve learned while localizing our apps is the importance of providing clear context for each app string we translate. This is particularly important for languages with grammatical gender. For example, the word “Sent” will be translated differently depending on whether the item it refers to is a feminine or masculine noun in a language with grammatical gender.

Another key lesson I’ve learned is the localization tools are constantly evolving and improving. New capabilities are frequently added to localization tools and product teams are very receptive to your feedback on how they can assist your localization process with their tool.

It pays to take a look at recent advancements in localization technology if you have a problem you’re trying to solve. Chances are there is a solution out there to help you.

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This is very true. Localization technologies are evolving very rapidly and you have to keep up with it in order to stay competitive. Also: context is indeed a crucial part of successful localization. How does localization affect your sales, growth and other metrics?


Melanie Heighway from invoice2go

Invoice2go is more popular in countries where users can view the app in their native language. This helps with user retention metrics in particular.

Additionally, given the fact we provide an invoicing app designed to use anywhere in the world, we also localize our app settings for each country so that users are able to invoice in their own currency and are able to apply local taxes with specific tax rates. This has also helped us grow and support our international user base.

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Really happy to hear that localization helped improve your retention metrics. Indeed, users are more inclined to use the app when it’s available in their native language. What do you think should be localized first? Marketing materials, product pages or something else?


Melanie Heighway from invoice2go

We localize almost all of our content at Invoice2go, with the exception of our blog and social media.

Initially, we localized our apps first, along with our local app storefronts and website. Soon after, we began localizing our support articles into our core market languages.

I think it makes a lot of sense for mobile app companies to start with localizing their app and associated storefronts for more global reach, given the strength of the mobile app market. Once this is carried out, it’s definitely worthwhile localizing your website, with SEO in mind to help new users discover your product.

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Indeed. SEO is extremely important as it helps improve discoverability of your app on the local market. How do you measure the quality of the localized content? Did you test it in any way?


Melanie Heighway from invoice2go

The quality of our localized content is judged from a few different perspectives. We assess both the linguistic quality of our translations, as well as the experience of the localization in the app, once the localization is rolled out.

For Invoice2go, the goal of localization is to ensure our users find the app natural to use in their country and language (given local terminology, tax rates and currency). To ensure our localization is of a high standard, we have text translated and then proofread by a separate independent proofreader. We then carry out rounds of regular quality assurance internally and through a third party linguistic QA company.

In terms of measuring the quality of the localized experience, we run regular quality and regression testing on our localized apps as well as app user testing. This is quite critical given the fact text generally expands when translating from English and we have limited real estate to work with on mobile device screens.

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Excellent approach. Having several QA steps and independent proofreaders really helps improve the overall quality of the translated text. Was it hard to reserve budget for localization? Did you have to adopt any strategies to make it possible?


Melanie Heighway from invoice2go

Invoice2go has always appreciated the value of localizing our app and associated content for international growth, and budget was allocated very early on for localization. After seeing the return of investment in user metrics after localizing for our core European markets, the company clearly saw the benefits of localization.

As Invoice2go’s localization manager, I do adopt strategies to ensure our localization spend is reasonable and realistic. One way I’m able to manage this is through the use of appropriate TMS and CAT tools. This helps me to ensure we can leverage previously translated content through the use of translation memories and repeated and 100% matched strings are only translated once, among other advantages!

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We’re always happy to see companies that see a boost in ROI and kudos for adopting smart localization strategies. Last, but not least, why do you think localization matters?


Melanie Heighway from invoice2go

I think the number one reason why localization matters is because it shows your customers that they matter – that their business and their needs are important to you.

Receiving positive app reviews from users around the world is extremely rewarding and localization really helps to make that possible.

Additionally, when you’re trying to solve a problem that affects any small business owner around the world, localization is a powerful tool to make your solution more accessible, particularly when data shows people prefer to buy products in their own language.

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Terrific answer, Melanie! 👍 Thank you so much for your time it was a real pleasure to learn how Invoice2go tackles localization. We hope your example will inspire more companies and app developers to consider app localization. We wish you the best of luck with Invoice2go and we hope that it will continue to grow and expand globally.


[clickToTweet tweet=”Learn how @Invoice2go boosted their ROI with localization. Read the interview with Melanie Heighway on @OpenMicXL8 #xl8 #t9n #LocalizationMatters” quote=”Learn how @Invoice2go boosted their ROI with localization. Read the interview with Melanie Heighway on @OpenMicXL8 #xl8 #t9n #LocalizationMatters”]


Thank you for reading, friend!

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Also, if you know any other startups, companies and developers who might be interested in doing an interview for #LocalizationMatters, please, let us know in the comment box below or click this link:

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Thanks again for reading and sharing!


~ Dmitry and Eleonora

Dmitry Kornyukhov

About Dmitry Kornyukhov

Founder of The Open Mic. Video game localization specialist. I help video game developers, game publishers and localization studios bring their projects to the Russian-speaking gaming community.

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