In these days, the world’s largest brands are looking for ways to increase their profits by selling their goods and services across borders. For example, there are Chinese companies who want to export their products or their digital services to Brazil. This may seemed to be out of sense in the past, but nowadays, it is more feasible than ever.
Today, the chances of acquiring global customers or providing your services through a website are great, whether you create Android and iOS applications, whether you deal with e-commerce. Evidence shows that several companies now prefer to translate their texts in English. However, studies show repeatedly that the vast majority of customers buy from websites translated in their own language. So, you should think about the possibility to translate your website.
Translate your Website and your Ads
At this stage of your company’s development, translating your website could be a powerful tool for your brand, allowing you to establish your digital presence in countries before your competitors. In the past, we have posted an article detailing the 10 reasons why you should translate your website.
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Are you ready to gain a market share by investing in a multilingual website? Let’s take a look at the three main phases of translating your online content for your future clients around the world.
1.Choose the right translation company
If you are trying to see what time a restaurant closes in London, Google Translate can serve your needs. However, if you are trying to start your branding internationally, it is best to forget the free automated translation tools. A high quality translation is an investment for your brand.
A simple search on the web will display thousands of translation options, but selecting the right company can make the difference between success and failure. Find your translation partner, who will be able to meet the following requirements:
- Demonstrate expertise in your area and in the target language.
- Linguists with language skills and expertise on issues related to your work.
- Advanced “translation-memory” technology. Translation Memory (TM) will help you by spotting the repeatability of the text.
- Understanding of complex project management and of best practices, including managing content updates and integrating with global content management systems (CMS).
- 24-hour ability to run projects if your site updates are time sensitive. (This can be accomplished by groups that are distributed in international time zones.)
2. Prepare your text right
In order to reach quality results, make sure to prepare the original texts correctly in the original language. Many times the result of website translation is not good because the language in the original texts is not correct. Usually, this happens because many translators cannot perceive the culture of every language. The culture of a language may be its idioms, humor and slang.
Align your website with a global business strategy. Does your site support local offices in every market or is it only your international presence online? Check your business infrastructure to make sure you can support the multilingual goals of each customer – and vice versa. You should take into consideration the local legal requirements, the local marketing, the local customer support (email, call center), the payment processing, the sales’ system, and more.
3. Digital Marketing Strategy
Important strategies, which are usually ignored in the multilingual websites, are the geographical targeting, the search engine optimization (SEO), the user settings and the clear user navigation methods (e.g.
Content Management System [CMS]). The maintenance of the content on the site is getting more complicated as you add languages. If you have a large audience and you change your site often, use a complete CMS to manage the content. Important features include:
- Ability to easily export and import content in a site-friendly format such as XML
- Filtering and workflows for new / updated content
- Support for all target languages
- Pay attention to standards and Unicode.
- Compliance with generally accepted coding standards (for scripting and middleware, as well as HTML) is part of the best practices in general as well as local benefits.
- Use Unicode for content-handling applications that encode files and contain translated text (e.g. HTML and XML) as UTF-8. For your WordPress content management system check out a previous article, detailing the best Plugins to translate a website.
Keep in mind that in general, the local text will be larger than the English one, although many Asian languages require less volume than English does. Check the design and the code to make sure that different lengths of text are supported. A common at-risk area is the horizontal navigation bar, which should be able to accommodate various lengths of text.
Avoid using Flash that may make your website slow, and furthermore, it is not easy to edit the format of the files.
Check the content on a global, regional and local level. Identify what content is global and can be translated to all countries (e.g., corporate messages and product descriptions), which content is appropriate for specific regions or markets (e.g., local press and legal). Design the website and the workflows to customize these types of content.
4. Updating and maintenance plan
How often do you plan to update your website? Daily updates in all languages require a very automated process between CMS and your translation partner. If updates are less frequent (monthly or quarterly), you may not have to invest so much in automation.
Do not expect that you will gain customers directly, only by translating your website. You have to optimize the search at all levels. This includes all the elements of the domestic search campaigns, including the creation of local domains, using relevant keywords for URLs, metadata and content, link building, etc.
A successful website translation can lead your business to new markets. Working with an experienced partner will save you time and money in long term and will ensure that your project will succeed soon.
Visit the web translation services we provide or explore our portfolio to see how we can help you with your need to translate a website.