Common Errors to Avoid in Website Translation

Mountain View, United States - September 11, 2018: Website of Go
Is your translated website not working as well as you expected? Don’t worry, you’re not the only one, but let’s look at what you can do to improve it.

Ctrl, alt C, Ctrl, alt P – Did you have fun copying text straight from Google translate?

Website translation is a lot trickier than it appears. Far too common do businesses think it’s okay to copy and paste a large quantity of text from their website, straight into a free machine translation tool like Google Translate– whilst Google Translate is becoming more and more sophisticated, please don’t do this! The site will most likely be filled with mistakes and potentially compromise your company’s reputation. Even though machine translation is improving by the day, you still need to look out for the translated grammar, vocabulary, and most importantly, cultural and linguistic nuances that may not be picked up without (at the very least) the post-editing input of a human translator.

Are you localising as well as translating?

Having your website transferred from one language to another is a great start. You’re already putting yourself ahead of the game, especially in comparison to your rivals. But too often, it’s not enough. You must take cultural differences into account to understand how they can affect your audience. Localising your site goes a step beyond merely translating text to help you more effectively target customers in your desired markets.

That can mean, for example, making payment options on your site reflect local preferences or getting your marketing department to recreate a campaign from scratch to help it speak more to the desired audience – this is known as transcreation. It may even be something as simple as changing the colour scheme on your website to accommodate cultural preferences.

If you want to learn more about localisation, check out our localisation blog here.

Did you translate all website components? Pinky promise?

Yes, you’ve translated your website’s ‘About Us’ section relatively well, but what about your ‘Contact us’ form or your supporting marketing channels such as the text that says ‘Follow us on Instagram’? These must also be translated if you want to attract an international audience; you need to speak their language.

You’re most likely already aware of the benefits of translating your website, such as an increase in sales, customer trust and an advantage over your competitors. But if you are making any of the mistakes we’ve mentioned, you need to put in place the right changes to impress a larger audience on an international scale.

Does this sound like it’s too much for you to do? Let us help! Contact us today and we’ll look into the best options for the translation of your website moving forward. 

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