Localization (or internationalization) is the process of translating your app for use in different locales and languages. This chapter will go over the tools and methods available to WordPress developers to localize their apps, themes, and plugins.
You will sometimes see localization abbreviated as l10n and internationalization sometimes abbreviated as i18n.
The market for web apps is increasingly global. Offering your app in other languages can be a strong competitive advantage to help you gain market share against competition within your own locale/language and will also help to stave off competition in other locales/languages.
If you plan to release any of your code under an open source license, localizing it first is a good way to increase the number of developers who can get involved in your project. If your plugin or theme is localized, developers speaking other languages will be more likely to contribute to your project directly instead of forking it to get it working in their language.
If you plan to distribute a commercial plugin or theme, localizing your code increases your number of potential customers.
If your target market is the United States only and you don’t have any immediate plans to expand into other regions or languages, then you may not want to spend the time preparing your code to be localized. Also, remember that each language or regional version of your app will likely require its ...