Translation Tips for Smaller Businesses Seeking a Bigger Slice of the Global Market

In the past, small businesses rarely marketed their products and services beyond their local area, but with the advent of the internet, globalisation is now a popular buzzword. Nowadays, if planned and executed professionally, you can reach international audiences with ease. In theory, even a small, local businesses in a remote area can attract customers on the other side of the world through their online presence.

Translation Tips for Smaller Businesses

Royalty free photo

On the other hand, the problem with globalisation is the fact that not everyone around the world is able to speak English, and so there are many language barriers to overcome. The way to address this issue is to translate key business information into your target market’s language. Here are some useful tips that will help you to streamline your translation process.

Revise Content

Translating large amounts of text is a big project, so it is sensible to review the entire content before you begin. You may find that some of your material is ready for an update and some may even be obsolete. As part of this process, make a conscious effort to simplify the information and remove colloquialisms; these don’t translate into foreign languages well and can easily create unnecessary confusion.

Always finish any text revisions before you start the translation process. Otherwise you risk a lot of headaches on all sides. The more ongoing versions of any one piece of text you have, the greater the risk that the translator will have to spend longer on the job.

A Multilingual Website

Translating a website into other languages should be a priority if you intend on marketing your products and services to a global audience. Unfortunately, it is not enough just to translate the website content into different languages. The underlying code will also need to be amended and SEO addressed. For this reason, it is sensible to ask your website developer to liaise with the translator, so any technical issues can be addressed early on in the process.

Choose a Professional Translation Provider

Translating business text into other languages is not as simple as being able to write the language, so it is not advisable to ask a junior employee familiar with Google Translate to do the job. Poor translation of key documentation could easily cause offense and drive customers away from your brand.

The best, and perhaps only, solution which will ensure that the quality of your content translation is very high, is working with a professional translation agency. Such agencies often specialise in translating marketing or legal content such as websites or contracts, making sure that your brand comes across professionally in your target market. Additionally, another important factor to bear in mind are any cultural and social differences between the markets. A marketing agency will take these into the account when working on your project, ensuring expertise.

Budget Carefully

A translation project can easily spiral over budget if you don’t manage the process carefully. Word counts are likely to be greater and certain languages may take longer to translate. Remember also that specialist content will take longer to translate, so if you operate in a niche area where technical language is prevalent, make sure you hire a translation provider and incorporate the extra cost into your budget.

Don’t Rush the Process

The less time you allocate to a translation project, the lower the quality of the final text will be, even if you work with a translation agency. Translation cannot be rushed, and such agencies will usually give you an estimate turnaround time based on the amount of text and their professional experience. It may take a lot of work to adapt your text to a foreign language and if you push the process along too quickly, mistakes will creep in.

It is important to convey the right message when building a business brand in a new market. Don’t try and cut corners when embarking on a translation project or your business will pay the price.