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Website Translation | Translate Websites Quickly

Any business with a website can be a global brand, yet very few are actually connecting with a global audience. Instead of pursuing a website translation strategy that caters to various languages, customs, and cultures, most companies are still offering a one-size-fits-all customer experience. This static approach exposes brands to several unfortunate scenarios:

International Website Translation Company

OPPORTUNITIES ARE MISSED.
Potential customers cannot access company information in their local language and choose not to interact with the brand at all.

MESSAGING IS MISINTERPRETED.
Potential customers who do want to interact with the brand choose to use Google Translate or similar free services. The resulting translation provides a poor user experience at best, and inaccurate information at worst.

COMPETITORS WIN.
Potential customers choose to do business with a competitor (foreign or domestic) that localized its website to create a superior customer experience.

Now that we know the importance of website translation, let’s review the process for tackling a website translation project, best practices, and the positive results you can expect when using an end-to-end solution like Smartling.

Benefits of Translating Websites

Translating and localizing a website is a significant strategic investment that requires a clear business case. ROI may come from many sources, but the most common advantages for localization include:

Better User
Experience

Every customer appreciates being spoken to in their native language. According to one European Commission study, 9 of 10 consumers always choose to navigate websites in their native language when presented with multiple language options.

Greater Online
Reach

Translating websites into a new language immediately opens your content up to potentially millions (or billions) of people who formerly could not understand it.

Increased
Sales

Personalization is the new expectation in online commerce. In fact, according to a Common Sense Advisory study, 56% of consumers say the ability to get information in their own language is more important than price.

Improved
SEO

When brands create relevant rewarding user experiences, search engines take notice. Rankings increase, customer awareness expands, and a virtuous cycle continues.

Get ready to go global with Smartling’s website translation services.

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Four Best Practices for Getting Started with Website Translation

1. Diagnose Your Website Translation Needs

The business case for website translation is easy to see, but growing businesses still have to allocate their resources and prioritize their initiatives intelligently. To determine the urgency of the initiative, consider the following questions:

Localization Company Benefits

HOW STRONG IS CONSUMER DEMAND?
Sometimes, eager audiences identify themselves by flooding your website with foreign traffic. Other times, it may be more wise to bet on the potential interest hidden in an emerging market. In either case, the speed and priority with which you address new audiences need to be a data-based decision.

HOW STRONG IS THE COMPETITION?
Stagnant or shrinking market share in a foreign market could be a signal that it’s time to translate content for a local audience. Likewise, opportunities to aggressively increase market share in a valuable territory can also be justification for fast-tracking translation.

HOW ESSENTIAL IS THE WEBSITE TO YOUR BUSINESS MODEL?
If customer engagement and revenue generation occur primarily (or exclusively) through your website, the need for – and rewards of – website translation will be significantly increased.

2. Prepare to Translate Your Website

No two websites translation projects look exactly alike. Site content varies by scope, format, style, storage location, commercial value, and a host of other factors. Additionally, human translators and digital resources can be combined in a wide array of configurations to complete the work. In order to eliminate confusion and increase efficiency, address the following questions upfront:

WHICH CONTENT DESERVES PRIORITY?
Don’t assume every word on your website needs to be translated for every audience or the translation has to happen all at once. Instead, start by identifying the content most crucial to the customer journey and most valuable to business goals.

WHO ELSE MAY BE INVOLVED IN THE LOCALIZATION PROCESS?
International SEO experts and local branding consultants can further optimization website translation efforts. But be sure to build time into publishing schedules if you choose to include these external partners in your workflow.

WHERE DOES THAT CONTENT LIVE?
Corporate website content is often hosted across a combination of content management, marketing automation and eCommerce enablement platforms. Make sure you have a clear picture of your publishing ecosystem before translation begins

HOW CAN TRANSLATION EFFICIENCY BE INCREASED?
At a certain point, workflows cannot be simplified any further and teammates cannot be asked to work any harder. That’s when more and more companies realize that implementing translation management software is the smartest way to keep their growth strategies on course.

WHO WILL COMPLETE THE TRANSLATION?
Billingual co-workers, freelance translators, or language service providers (LSPs) can all serve as suitable translation resources depending on the scenario. However, processes must be aligned to their strengths.

3. Calculate the Cost of Translating Your Website

Confirming the total cost of website translation is more complex than merely multiplying a word count by a per-word translation price. The full financial projection needs to account for:

PROJECT SCOPE
The expense associated with delivering localized websites will be fairly modest when your global footprint is relatively small. However, as your brand expands to additional countries you require more content in more languages, your costs may begin to multiply accordingly.

INTERNAL EFFORT
The talent required to manage and execute website translation projects is traditionally the largest cost category. Aside from translators and project managers, companies that elect not to implement translation management software will also have to recruit IT resources to manually orchestrate all the underlying technologies.

TRANSLATION COSTS
The cost of actual translation varies significantly depending on a number of factors, but the basic benchmark to remember is 10 to 20 cents per word. Costs may increase when complex content such as legal policy is translated, or when rare and complex languages are targeted. Alternatively, costs may decrease when machine translation and translation memory are leveraged strategically. Contact us about Smartling Language Services to learn more.

Website Translation Cost

4. Reduce Costs, Improve Speed, Increase Quality

There are four main ways companies can save money on website translation. Each approach incorporates technology, but not necessarily in the way you might expect.

USE A TRANSLATION PROXY
A proxy solution is a cloud-based utility that sits in front of your website responding in real time to deliver users a localized version upon request. Instead of adapting your infrastructure to support several new website versions, you can automatically pull and present all of your translated web pages from a centralized hosting location in the cloud.

TAP INTO APIs
If you do have a robust infrastructure capable of supporting several localized sites and their associated business processes, a translation API might be your best bet. This allows your team to easily push and pull content into and out of your translation management platform using familiar tools from their existing workflows.

AUTOMATE INTEGRATION WITH A SUITE OF CONNECTORS
The best translation management tools are close friends with content management systems. Instead of copying and pasting years worth of technical support tips from Zendesk or thousands of product descriptions from Sitecore, automatically ingesting content for translations eliminates all the headaches and a significant amount of cost.

LEVERAGE TRANSLATION MEMORY
Eliminating redundant work may ultimately be the most impactful way to trim translation expenses. Translation memory enables this efficiency by maintaining a dynamic database of previously translated terms that translators can apply toward future text strings. This single innovation can help companies cut anywhere from 40% to 80% of their translation costs, depending on how much overlapping content they produce.

Solving Common Website Translation Challenges

With so many moving parts to account for, even the most meticulous website translation plans may encounter unexpected challenges along with way. Here are a few of the most frequent issues companies face and how Smartling helps to alleviate those challenges:

Speed

Legacy Challenges

» Content changes are gathered manually, delaying translation and delivery

» Website translation takes months or years of developer time

SMARTLING’S SOLUTION

» Changes in content are detected in real-time, as they happen

» The Global Delivery Network eliminates the need to recode your website

Quality

Legacy Challenges

» A lack of available context results in embarrasing translation mistakes

» Translation review processes are limited by a lack of modern tools

Smartling’s Solution

» Translators see source text in the exact context as it appears on your webpage

» All collaborators have access to the same easy-to-use quality control resources

Direct Cost

Legacy Challenges

» Lack of centralization means translated website content is rarely repurposed

» Budget constraints won’t allow you to translate into as many languages as you would like

Smartling’s Solution

» A centralized translation memory database allows for effective, proper reuse of prior translations

» The Global Delivery Network removes the cost of internationalizing your code

Opportunity Cost

Legacy Challenges

» Translating websites diverts IT attention away from developer roadmaps

» Limited resource bandwidth delays projects 

Smartling’s Solution

» IT requirements are minimized by intelligent integration and process automation

» Internal resources are free to focus on critical initiatives

Vendor Lock-In

Legacy Challenges

» Most translation software vendors push you to use their translator network

»If the platform is not 3rd party friendly,  resources must work outside their preferred CAT tool

Smartling’s Solution

» Use your own internal resources, agency, or Smartling’s Language Services

»  Smartling’s platform offers custom APIs, so resources can use their preferred tools 

Website Translation Process

Introducing Smartling’s Global Delivery Network

Smartling’s translation proxy tool, the Global Delivery Network, simplifies and accelerates the process of launching multilingual websites, making it easy for you to translate websites and web applications without the need to develop and maintain multiple translated websites.

Businesses use Smartling’s website localization software for marketing and product promotion, as well as their dynamic applications such as e-commerce and personalized websites, all without needing to make infrastructure changes or additions.

Learn More

Smartling Success Stories

With the right translation technology, you can reduce the overhead required to translate websites and maintain them. You can also speed up the process of translating websites, reduce your costs, and avoid translation errors.

Translated six websites in less than 3 weeks

Increased its website
leads by 45%

Recouped initial investement and achieved a 250% return