If you have a company and you want to reach more people across the globe, the best way to ensure successful translation and localization of your products, services and website would be to hire professional translation services to handle the job for you.
Companies that want to save money on hiring the services of a translator or translation company usually just get a person in-house who knows the target language and use a free translation app. This approach will work for simple translations and are best suited for use internally (inside office) because the person does not have formal training and apps are unreliable for longer sentences.
You’ll end up spending more money correcting mistakes and putting out fires if you don’t let the pros handle your localization efforts. An accurate, concise translation will help your image and your product won’t look cheap. If you want to save real money on translation services, here’s how to do it:
1. Go Pro
Getting professional translators is always better than entrusting the translation of your whole product line to an amateur with an app. Have you ever come across a website or a product that contained some cringe worthy English? That was probably the result of someone who knew some rudimentary English and was aided by Google Translate – not the best way to show your prospective clients you’re serious and mean business.
2. Use plain English
Yes, you are paying for translation services and translators are very talented people. But try to use plain English as much as possible. Avoid using jargon and ultra technical terms. The fees for highly technical pieces are high, so simplifying your document before having it translated would end up saving you money.
Anything culture specific – idioms, sayings and phrases should be cut from the final draft. Imagine asking someone to translate “push the envelope” or “put the pedal to the metal” – it just won’t work! Don’t forget about context as well. Translators will have a hard time deciphering what you mean if you don’t follow up words and phrases with the appropriate context.
3. Keep your Word count low
To keep your costs down even more, try to edit and trim down your content. Remember that translators charge per word, so it’s a good idea to first review your document and find ways to eliminate unnecessary words and descriptions. Ask assistance from your legal team if the document is of a legal nature to avoid leaving-out anything important.
4. Combine your smaller jobs and ask for a volume discount
Avoid having smaller jobs translated unless absolutely necessary. If you have a lot of projects that are 300 words or less, try grouping these together and ask for a volume discount. Some companies usually have price breaks for large projects.
5. Use Accessible formats
Make sure the documents to be translated are written in a format that can be accessed by any computer. This will ensure that as the document is being translated, it will be “mirrored” correctly. Avoid sending handwritten and scanned documents as well. If you regularly have documents translated, ask if they can do it using a CAT tool (Computer Aided Translation) that can memorize old translations so you get a discount everytime a repeat translation is done.
In a Nutshell
Saving money on translation and localization services need not be amateurish. To avoid being the laughing stock of the community, get the real deal – hiring professional translators will save you more in the long run and will give your company presence abroad the much needed zest it needs in order to reach your new clientele and make lasting connections.