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Localization at eBay

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  1. Localization at eBay L. Niederer June 2011

  2. eBay L10n • The eBayLocalization team based in San Jose and Berlin (Dreilinden) Germany is responsible for providing high quality translation services and localization support for eBay Marketplaces, and adjacencies such as Kijiji (eBay Classifieds), Shopping.com, StubHub and others.

  3. From humble beginnings • Localization at eBay started in 1999 • First site to be localized was Japan, followed by Germany, France and Italy. • Today we have a dedicated staff of in-house linguists that support the following 9 languages: Canadian French Dutch, Flemish (BE) French, German, Italian, Polish Spanishand Traditional Chinese (HK) and as well as Language Specialist contractors for 9 additional European languages. The LS are managed by one LS manager in the US, and one in Europe. In the L10n team we also have Localization Engineers and Project Managers.

  4. From humble beginnings • We also facilitate access to dynamic content (released on so-called trains) for International Content Managers of English speaking sites (CA, UK, AU, SG and IN) for their language (spelling/terminology) corrections. • We not only localize web content, but also content for off-line tools and printed material. • Our fastest growing segment is Mobile.

  5. eBay Mobile • Currently we localize content for iPhone, Android, BlackBerry, iPad, Windows 7 and Mobile Web. • We not only localize the content but we also run LQA (Language Quality Assurance) for all mobile products. • In 2010 we had Global Mobile sales of $4 bill, $2bill came from international markets.


  6. eBay Mobile: Example

  7. eBay Mobile: Example

  8. Expansion in Europe • In 2009 we operated websites in 11 European markets (Austria, Belgium, France, Germany, Ireland, Italy, Netherlands, Poland, Spain, Switzerland, United Kingdom) • Some of these sites are so-called mini-sites (Austria, Ireland and Switzerland and get the vast majority of their content from their respective main sites (Germany and UK).

  9. Expansion: Example Europe – 2009

  10. Expansion Example Europe – 2010/2011 • In the fall of 2009 we started adding more sites to our European portfolio. Initially 6 new sites (Czech Republic, Denmark, Greece, Norway, Russia and Sweden) with Finland, Hungary and Portugal following in 2010. • Out of these 9 countries, Russia is the fastest growing site (also offers a classifieds experience). • We call this model eBay International Markets (EIM)

  11. Expansion Example Europe: 2011

  12. eBay around the globe • Not all international eBay sites are localized by the L10n team. • Some are written in the respective target language (i.e. South Korea, Turkey) and need no localization • Some are localized by outside vendors (without review by the L10n team (i.e. Thailand, Vietnam) • Some are run in co-operation with partners and the partners provide the content (i.e. China)

  13. eBay around the globe: Examples

  14. Future: • Based on our current EIM model we might be expanding into other markets in the next couple of years • Currently Africa and the Middle East are non-sited areas

  15. New eBay sites in the future? السوق الدولية השוק הבינלאומי

  16. Tools • Initially no translation tools! • 2001 introduction of translation tools (Trados) • 2003 introduction of Idiom WorldServer • 2010/2011 First steps towards a new L10n Framework in order to simplify, streamline and improve the efficiency of our localization services.

  17. Our current translation throughput As a general rule, our translators translate between 1,500 to 2,000 words per day and review between 8,000 to 10,000 words per day. For our Asian languages, the throughput is slightly lower. These numbers vary by language and complexity. Additionally, we often recommend that a review step is completed in-house after our third-party supplier provides translations. This adds time to the and this must be added to the schedule. 17

  18. Our current translation throughput Our average turnaround times for non-train projects are: 

  19. 2010 Numbers for some European sites:

  20. Our release model: • When we began with localization in 1999 there was a lag of more than 8 sometimes 12 weeks between a core release (US) and an international release. • Over the past couple of years we continuously decreased the lag and recently went to simship! • We now use the simship model for all our “full” international sites.

  21. Future: Our new Localization Framework approach: • The Localization (L10n) Framework is a set of tools, services, and processes that streamline the submission of content for localization within eBay, ensuring the right level of quality in a cost-effective manner with the best TTM (time to market). • At the core of the platform is the Translation (T9n) service, which acts as a conduit between submission channels and the L10n operations team. It allows for seamless exchange and processing of translation requests/responses.

  22. Future: Our new Localization Framework approach:(continued) • By creating custom drivers that integrate with the L10n Framework, developers can directly invoke the T9n service from within their applications to meet their translation requirements. • The Localization Framework aims to support this mission with a set of interfaces, processes, SLAs (service level agreements) and multiple levels of QoS (Quality of Service), all of this backed up by the eBay L10N team dedicated to provide the highest quality of translation for their customers and the eBay community.

  23. Questions and Answers? lutz@ebay.com