5 reasons why you should use a glossary in your translations

Published on 26/01/2021

Unlike the lexicon, which assimilates in a more general way all the lemmas (words that can be included in a dictionary) of a given language, the glossary is specialised and limited to a very precise field.


Using a translation glossary for your technical, scientific or medical translations is a method that will only bring you advantages.

1. Consistency and homogeneity of translations

Consistency and homogeneity of translations

A translation glossary ensures that your translations are consistent across all translated documents.

Just as a glossary containing all the abbreviations and technical terms at the beginning of a work makes it much easier to read, a glossary including the terms to be translated helps a lot when translating.

Therefore, the translator will no longer have to worry about how to translate specialised terms every time, especially in specialised fields such as the translation of technical or medical documentation.

2. Saves time for translation teams

Saves time for translation teams

It often happens that several translators have to work on the translation of the same texts. Having a translation glossary adapted to the field and the client is a tool that saves considerable time.

A glossary greatly facilitates and simplifies internal company communication. If each employee uses a specific term from the glossary, one should be able to understand what it is and immediately see how to translate this term into other languages.

3. Customisation of translations for your company

Customisation of translations for your company

Companies that produce a lot of documentation in several languages end up adopting their own jargon and standards.

Translation glossaries then become an indispensable element. All international organisations have such glossaries, as does the International Labour Organisation.

4. Improving your digital strategy and SEO

Improving your digital strategy and SEO

Most companies with an international presence are adopting a translation glossary for their digital marketing. There is nothing worse for an e-commerce company than having different translations for the same product.

Search engine robots crawl pages for specific keywords. The advantage of having a glossary of translations of these keywords is to have commercially effective translations in all languages on the same site.

As explained in another article "SEO translation: keywords", these words do not all have the same weight in different languages.

5. Demonstrate your expertise in your field

Demonstrate your expertise in your field

Being able to produce a translation glossary that serves as a reference in your field can only benefit your company's image. You are demonstrating your expertise in your sector and your ability to internationalise.

Therefore, it is a good argument for your external communication. A relevant and well-supplied glossary in several languages can only increase your prestige.

Whether it is a technical, scientific, medical or other type of translation, it is always good to have a translation glossary. There are many tools, some of which are available online, that can help you develop a glossary very easily.

All serious translation agencies use translation glossaries, some of which are highly specialised and specific to particular clients.

Virginia Pacheco's picture
Virginia Pacheco

Blog writer and Community Manager interested in multiculturality and linguistic diversity. From her native Venuzuela, she has travelled and lived for many years in France, Germany, Cameroon and Spain, passing on her passion for writing and her intercultural experiences.

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