The first thing many people think about when they hear the term “translation technology” is computer text translation. Although computer text translation has some value, albeit limited for customer facing material, it’s by no means the extent of translation technology. When viewed in the larger context, translation software provides structure and support to the entire process of transforming content, such as a website or mobile app into a form that is appropriate and effective for users in new geographic markets.
It’s hard to understate the importance of website translation. One Gallup survey from 23 countries found that nine out of ten internet users always visit websites in their native language. That is why it’s crucial to accurately translate website content when available. Another study in eight countries found that 72.4% of consumers are more likely to buy a product if the information is presented in their native language. This is true even for bilingual buyers, who report feeling more comfortable using websites in their native language.
Translation technology involves a number of components to assist project managers, translators, reviewers, and developers.
Taking responsibility for translation and localization of a website is no small task. Traditional methods of project management for an undertaking of this type involve manually collecting and tracking all of the content to be translated; coordinating responsibilities and timelines with providers of translation services, editors, and reviewers; and manually moving the translated content into the final website or other destination. Often more difficult than the original project is the ongoing maintenance and translation of new or revised content over time.
Fortunately, Smartling’s translation technology removes the hassle and headache for translation project managers. Smartling automatically captures content to be translated during the initial project and every time content is added or changed thereafter. System workflows route the content to the selected translation resource. Alerts and notifications are provided so that project managers are always up to date on progress and are aware of any missed deadlines or other potential delays. When translations are completed and approved, Smartling’s API automatically returns it to the target system.
It’s important for project managers to understand the efficiency and effectiveness of each translation project. Smartling’s translation technology provides robust analytics to help project managers evaluate the performance of translation resources and calculate the ultimate return on investment for the project. Smartling’s data visualizations and downloadable reports are available on demand and always updated in real-time. Project managers get a global view of your content as well as project- and market-specific details.
Regardless of whether professional human translators, bulk translation resources, or bilingual employees are used for translation and localization services, it’s important that the translation occur in context. In other words, translators need to be able to see what the translated content looks like on the page where it will ultimately reside. This helps them make smart decisions the first time when design or layout impacts word choice. Space considerations are an excellent example of where seeing the page has an impact. Smartling provides translators with tools to see the design in context in real-time, eliminating unnecessary back and forth after the fact.
Translators also benefit from Smartling’s built in glossary and style guide functionality. Instructions about tone, style, and even instructions regarding particular words and phrases are available as they work. Additionally, powerful translation memory eliminates unnecessary duplication of translation effort by learning as it goes and maximizing the probability that previous translation work will be reused.
Editing and proofreading are an essential part of any quality website translation process. Smartling’s translation technology also allows reviewers to view and edit translated text in the context of the final destination, increasing their opportunity to catch errors and improve quality.
Smartling understands that your developers’ time is precious. That’s why our translation technology eliminates much of the coding from your internalization project. Smartling’s translation proxy solution, the Global Delivery Network, translates dynamic Web applications quickly and easily with minimal intervention or coding by developers. Our enterprise-grade API can automatically collect strings, put them through the translation workflow, and return the translated strings directly to you. Not only does this significantly reduce the cost and timeline of internationalization, it also frees up development resources to work on other strategic priorities.
Translation technology can help make a complex project simpler by automating as much of the process as possible and providing your resources with tools that make their work easier and more efficient. It helps to ensure a final product of the highest quality and eliminates time consuming, manual, and error-prone processes, reducing costs and improving results.