How to facilitate internationalization with translation

Published on 02/06/2020

According to data collected by Eurostat in 2017, 38% of enterprises with a sales website had difficulties in selling in other countries, with insufficient command of foreign languages being one of the obstacles. If this difficulty is already apparent in terms of web content, the same is true for the translation of international documentsin general.

Achieving a good internationalization, which brings effective results, requires a detailed and deep adaptation to the different potential countries, starting by adapting the translated contents.

Internationalization and localization: the middle ground

Internationalization and localization: the middle ground

Analyzing the example of Ikea that uses graphics and illustrations to internationalize the assembly manuals of its furniture or of McDonald's that, on the contrary, adapts its menus to the local products of each country, or even of each region, we can see that internationalization can take many different forms.

Each company must determine its strategy according to its objectives, for example, by establishing general international communication or by deciding on location. However, when translating international documents or web content, localization is unavoidable, although it should be done in a reasonable manner.

Take into account all communication tools

Take into account all communication tools

To facilitate internationalisation through translation, we must first focus on the content to be translated into the target language, as well as the communication tools we will use (e-marketing, website, blog, video tutorials, newsletter, paper documents, etc.).

We will prioritize the fundamental documents for the internationalization of our activity, in particular, those that are part of the customer's acquisition channels and more generally, the communication and marketing channels, etc. However, we must not forget about legal documents (general conditions of sale, product return policy, etc.) whose specialised translation must be accurate and localised.

Preparing international documents for translation

we must not forget the legal documents (general conditions of sale, product return policy, etc.) whose specialized translation must be precise and localized

For example, we will have to adapt a legal document to the specialized language of the target country and its specific regulations. A landing page on our website containing a storytelling technique will also have to be adapted to address the person in the target country directly.

Therefore, the objective will be to prepare the texts for translation in such a way that it is easier for the translator to adapt them, i.e., locate them, while preserving the message and the form of communication of the source text.

Choosing the right translators

Choosing the right translators

We will need to find a professional translator who specialises in localised translations, whether you are a freelance transl ator or a translation agency. If you have a large translation project that includes different types of documents and deals with different areas (legal, commercial, financial, etc.), you will need to use several specialized translators.

In this case, we recommend using a translation agency, as it will easily and quickly adapt to our needs, and will have the necessary resources (professional and specialised translators, translation and communication tools, etc.) to guide and manage the international document translation project.

Successful internationalisation through the translation of international documents begins, first of all, with good preparation. Choosing the most important documents and content, preparing them for translation by compiling, for example, a glossary of terms and, finally, choosing competent and specialised professional translators are key aspects of improving internationalisation.

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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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