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Top 3 Swedish Localization Tips

Author: Andreea Balaoiu

Top 3 Swedish Localization Tips

Swedish is the de facto national language of Sweden, spoken by approximately 8.8 million people; the most spoken language in the Nordic countries; the 14th-most spoken language in Europe, after Greek (; the official secondary language in Finland and, the last, but certainly not least, an official language of the European Union. It is no wonder that its demand is seeing a massive increase on the transnational landscape.

In this article we will present the top 3 best Localization tips and practices when entering and competing in the Swedish market, pinpointing a series of key factors that favorably influence the adaptation, activity, and development of a business in this specific market, with a focus on Translation & Localization best practices.

Swedish Localization Tip #1: Trans-adaptation

In an introductory study to the Swedish language conducted by Urban Sikeborg (Introduction to Swedish by Urban Sikeborg, Stockholm 1997–98), Swedish is considered to be a Category I language in terms of difficulty, as it is a direct linguistic descendant of Old Norse, commonly spoken by the Germanic peoples living in Scandinavia during the Viking Era. Its complexity, as well as historical and cultural heritage, makes it a challenging language to translate and localize in a target language, however, contemporary Swedish linguistic trends have shifted considerably.

According to a Cultural Atlas ( article on Swedish communication and tone of voice, the Swedish prefer a direct communication style: frank, straightforward and fluid, characterized by a very specific, functional focus. Therefore, one of the best Translation and Localization tips for the Swedish market is trans-adaptation, in other words, the adaptation of the source text into the target Swedish language, in order to attain an authentic “feel”, both in terms of idiomatic syntax, as well as terminology, without sticking too close to an unnatural, descriptor-ridden source text.

Swedish Localization Tip #2: Focus on having a strong digital linguistic foothold

According to a Forrester research paper, localized content, tailored to a country or specific geography is paramount in shaping purchase decisions, and the Swedish Market is certainly no exception.

With an impressive internet penetration rate of 98.0% recorded in January 2021 () Sweden is highly connected to the digital landscape, providing marketers, tech giants, and other developing companies the ripe opportunity to penetrate it and tailor their business communication to the local wants and needs.

Keeping a tight grasp on the popular topics and fields of localization, as well as establishing a sturdy online content hub, with digital website content curated to the specific requirements of the Swedish Market will not only pose a great competitive advantage but will also provide that native touch and appeal that will certainly make you stand out among the other contenders.

Swedish Localization Tip #3: Textual formatting & vocabulary specifics

The Swedish language utilizes both the 24-hour and 12-hour clock in its textual formatting, while the standard numeric date format is year-month-day. This may pose some difficulties in linguistic adaptation, however, it is a valid localization tip for entering the Swedish market, as it applies to a wide range of official documentation, and business communication which must be marked accordingly.

Additionally, as mentioned in the #2 Swedish localization tip concerning the inclination towards content and services localized and trans-adapted in Swedish, it is equally important to note that Swedish consumers value collective issues such as sustainability, environment and ethical transparency, therefore, when translating and localizing for the Swedish market one must be mindful to not overtly address such issues in a linguistically inappropriate manner.

The Bottom Line

The top 3 localization tips when entering the Swedish market presented in this article can certainly contribute favorably to the adaptation and to the streamlining of the Translation and Localization workflow when connecting with this entire novel and challenging audience.

At AD VERBUM, we take great pride in our expertise, as well as an extensive portfolio of professional Localization Services for a wide range of content types, from exact texts to creative writing, to aid you on your journey to localize your content as effectively as possible to the Swedish market.

Our Professional Localization services are provided by multivalent content SMEs, native to the highest-ranking language combinations within the market, guiding you along every step of the intricate Localization process and giving you the voice to speak globally through the right content, tailored to your needs. Get in touch with the language experts at AD VERBUM and start your translation journey toward a new market and audience today.

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On 28.03.2024 AD VERBUM Ltd. signed an agreement No 17.1-1-L-2024//180 with the Investment and Development Agency of Latvia on receiving support for export assistance under the project “SME Innovative Business Development” co-financed by the European Regional Development Fund.