Types of Translation Projects

The type of translation and localization services you require will depend on your project. The project type will also determine which type of translation software will be most helpful to you.

Which type of project do you want to learn more about?

Types of Translation Methods

Enhance language translation services through a cloud-based translation software platform that automatically collects content, facilitates human translation, and returns translated content to you quickly and easily. Who creates the translations? That’s entirely up to you. Use any combination of in-house or third-party resources. If you don’t already have a translation vendor, Smartling offers a network of translation partners from which to choose. Using Smartling’s translation software platform, your translation service options include:

  • Professional human translation: This translation service results in the highest possible quality and is critical for technical or specialized content, but may not be the best fit for projects with substantial user-generated content.
  • Transcreation by human specialists: This usually supplements professional human translation. A specialist works from a creative brief rather than a source text to translate creative content, such as marketing taglines, where direct translation is insufficient.
  • Translation by bilingual employees: Bilingual employees know your industry and brand and can ensure consistency in tone and style, but quality and speed will likely suffer in comparison to professional human translation. Generally, employees should be involved in the review process, but not the primary source of translation.
  • Non-professional human translation: This translation service is often used for large projects where speed is of paramount importance and quality is less critical. This type of translation cannot be used for most types of specialized translation, such as legal, medical, or technical content.
  • Human translation by volunteers: Non-profits and other organizations with a highly-engaged, multilingual audience may turn to their volunteer community to translate relevant content. This translation service is unlikely to have the quality or timeliness of professional human translation, and other translation services are usually a better choice.
  • Computer-generated (machine) translation: Free translation services like Google Translate should never be used for customer-facing content. Enterprise translation engines produce higher-quality translations, but are generally cost-prohibitive and require a large amount of previously translated content to “train” the system.
  • Computer-generated translation with human editing: This translation service combines machine translation with human editing, but correcting the machine output can be more time consuming than simply translating from scratch. Professional translators often decline to work on this type of project.

With Smartling’s translation software platform, you can choose to use any combination of these translation services. Furthermore, you don’t have to stick with one type of translation service for all types of content. Using Smartling, a combination of several of these approaches can give each content category the quality and attention it requires while ensuring efficiency.