Website translation trauma – is this YOU?

We just published this article on Open2Export, the new service supporting SMEs in exporting.

Does website translation really matter? I mean, really?

We all know it’s SO important to have web presence these days, and if your SEO guys know their stuff it’ll ensure your website translation real visibility.

BUT, there’s a caveat – you REALLY want it to be visibility of something GOOD. Crass poorly “translated” text is a real turn-off and will lose you credibility and customers. A lot, of both.

“You would say that though… as long as our website translation’s close enough, does it really matter?”   Well… Yes, it really does…

Website translation really, really matters

While the Brits are generally forgiving – within reason – of clumsy language, European managers are far less so. They expect a professional website for a professional product – and will assume the reverse to be just as true. You may make the best widget in the world, but if your website translation makes it a laughing stock that widget’s going nowhere in Europe.

We’ve been translating for a German gas industry leader for over 7 years, and researching a big project for them this morning I found myself on the “English” website of another big German industrial player. Once I (and the office) had stopped laughing, I actually wrote to their Contacts page to point out some of the grossest errors. The text is patently costing them credibility, and lost credibility means lost sales.

The company concerned are keen to sell into the UK, and I’m sure it’s excellent German engineering, but having seen the appalling English on their website I won’t be the only one thinking: If they won’t even spend a bit on half-decent translation, what else do they cut corners on?” It’s high-end expensive engineered product too – a small part of one lost sale would have PAID for that proper translation…

“We spend loads on SEO though…”

All the SEO in the world won’t compensate for laughter-inducing website translation – in fact good SEO on your site means more people will see it, laugh, and tell their friends, who’ll tell THEIR friends. who’ll… That negative publicity can quickly negate ALL the money you’ve spent on that market, and more.

And that marketing campaign won’t have been cheap – so PLEASE don’t screw it up by scrimping on getting your own “shop window” translated PROPERLY. It’s really not expensive – a typical 10-page SME website from a reputable provider may be as little as a few hundred pounds. While you may want to get several quotes, in doing so please remember cheap language is cheap for a reason. Remember too the MoJ’s interpreting fiasco (just Google it) and remember that recommendations and references are worth far more than a shiny website. And don’t go NEAR any provider offering to “match any translation quote” – just how will they do that?

There’s more useful info on our own website translation page – and if you’re considering getting some translation done, our Really Helpful Friendly Guide provides more pointers on how you can get the best product whichever provider you choose.

A Cautionary Tale…

I’ll close with a recent “emergency rescue” website translation re-write we did a few months ago for a client who – luckily for them – found us just in time. A UK SME had a product they’d told the French media about, and the French media loved it. Loved it so much, they did an editorial in Le Monde about it promoting the soon-to-launch French website!

4 days before the editorial was due to hit the street the client had their “professional” French website translation checked – and yes, it was awful. Not just bad, but really, really BAD. A brief panicky Google later they’d found us and we’d started the re-write, which literally went live about 1 hour before Le Monde hit the street. Now THAT was just-in-time

September 14, 2012 - Advice export Translation




ONE COMMENT


  • […] can download a PDF on The Old Tramway here And we saw a treecreeper again! He saw so cute I photographed him – yes, it really was THAT […]

    Pingback by: Lifeline Language Services on: November 30, 2012 at: 11:18 am

Leave a comment..

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Get a free Quote

Please just give us a brief outline of what you’re looking for, and one of our friendly team will get straight back to you.

Your Name (required)We PROMISE to use your information ONLY for our work with you. Your name and other details will never be passed on to other parties and will be retained only for as long as we need them.

Your Email (required)We need this to be able to send you our quotation. Your email will not be shared with anyone.

What would you like us to do? (required)e.g. "Translation into Greek of user manual"

Your company or organization, if applicableOptional - we're not prying, this just helps us see if we've worked with another part of your organisation before which helps us identify the best translator for you

Telephone Also optional, but it will help us to resolve any queries more quickly with you so we can respond faster. We promise not to share this with anyone else unless needed (sometimes for interpreting), and we WON'T hassle you!

Can you tell us a bit more about what you need? Size, format etc?If you're unclear, don't worry - our friendly team is here to help so you're welcome to chat over, on 0800 783 4678!

You can upload a file to us below; we recommend zipping to protect the contents. Only one file can be uploaded, so please zip multiple files together. Maximum file size: 10MB. NB: LARGE FILES TAKE TIME TO UPLOAD. PLEASE WAIT FOR "MESSAGE SENT" CONFIRMATION (beneath Send button) BEFORE CLOSING THIS WINDOW!

To confirm that you are happy for us to use the information that you give us, in total confidence, in order to handle your request, please click on the box below (the one marked "I'm not a robot" (which also helps block spam requests)   then click the Send button below it.

Learn more about your confidentiality
Learn more about your GDPR protection

Occasionally browsers may not confirm sending is complete - don't panic, it will get through! If after a few minutes you haven't seen confirmation, just press [Esc] to close the form - thanks!

×
Request a Callback

We promise to use your information only for our work with you. Your name or other details will never be passed on to other parties and will be retained only for as long as we have to. Learn more about your confidentiality

Your Name (required)

Your Email (required)

What would you like us to do? (required)

What number should we call you back on? (required - of course - it is a Callback request...!)

Can you please give us a little more information on your request?

To confirm that you are happy for us to use your information in total confidence to handle your request, please click on the box below (the one marked "I'm not a robot" (this also helps block spam requests)

then click the Send button beneath it.
Learn more about your confidentiality
Learn more about your GDPR protection


It seems a glitch in some browsers means they may not confirm sending is complete - rest assured the email will get through to us, so if after what seems ample time you haven't had that confirmation just press [Esc] to close the form - thanks!

×
Get a free Quote

Please just give us a brief outline of what you’re looking for, and one of our friendly team will get straight back to you.

Your Name (required)We PROMISE to use your information ONLY for our work with you. Your name and other details will never be passed on to other parties and will be retained only for as long as we need them.

Your Email (required)We need this to be able to send you our quotation. Your email will not be shared with anyone.

What would you like us to do? (required)e.g. "Translation into Greek of user manual"

Your company or organization, if applicableOptional - we're not prying, this just helps us see if we've worked with another part of your organisation before which helps us identify the best translator for you

Telephone Also optional, but it will help us to resolve any queries more quickly with you so we can respond faster. We promise not to share this with anyone else unless needed (sometimes for interpreting), and we WON'T hassle you!

Can you tell us a bit more about what you need? Size, format etc?If you're unclear, don't worry - our friendly team is here to help so you're welcome to chat over, on 0800 783 4678!

You can upload a file to us below; we recommend zipping to protect the contents. Only one file can be uploaded, so please zip multiple files together. Maximum file size: 10MB. NB: LARGE FILES TAKE TIME TO UPLOAD. PLEASE WAIT FOR "MESSAGE SENT" CONFIRMATION (beneath Send button) BEFORE CLOSING THIS WINDOW!

To confirm that you are happy for us to use the information that you give us, in total confidence, in order to handle your request, please click on the box below (the one marked "I'm not a robot" (which also helps block spam requests)   then click the Send button below it.

Learn more about your confidentiality
Learn more about your GDPR protection

Occasionally browsers may not confirm sending is complete - don't panic, it will get through! If after a few minutes you haven't seen confirmation, just press [Esc] to close the form - thanks!

×
Testimonials

Like to see what others are saying about us?

The link will open a new window where you can browse our (highly complimentary!) Client Guestbook with feedback from UK and European business, NGO, and private clients.

We hope you enjoy our Testimonials & Client Guestbook!

×