Website translation: 4 things we need to know
Translating a website is a major project that should not be left to improvisation. Regardless of your objectives (to attract more users, increase sales, extend the company to new countries), the content of the page must be adapted to the target audience while respecting the image of the company and its values. Here are the 4 essential things you need to know about web page translation
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To consider that English is sufficient to address an "international" audience is a very banal idea. Actually, you should only translate your website into English if you want to address English-speaking countries.
For example, French, Russian or Chinese will visit your website, but if you don't have it translated into French, Russian or Mandarin Chinese you will hardly be able to attract them and turn them into your customers.
The term "localization" in translation refers to the adaptation of a text to its target location, whether it is a country, a region or a city. Localization is of major importance either to improve the positioning of your website or to offer a higher quality to users.
It is recommended that users find content that is familiar to them and that invites them to continue browsing in order to encourage them to buy a product or continue reading blog articles, for example.
Therefore, from the words used at the time of writing through the structure of the texts will have to go through a careful filter in order to adapt it to potential customers.
Have you taken care of improving the positioning of your website on Google.com? We will also have to do it in the face of the target language. In other words, if you translate your website into Dutch, for example, it will be well positioned on Google.nl. For this to happen, it is obviously necessary to make sure that the key words are translated correctly.
However, the following points should also be checked:
- The hosting of the website
- Existing backlinks (i.e. links to your website)
- The structure of the web domain
For some countries, it will be necessary to adapt the web positioning to the most used search engine, which sometimes will not be Google. For example, in Russia the search engine we should consider is Yandex.
Even if you are bilingual in the target language, it is better to use a quality translator to translate the entire website. The best solution is to use a translation agency. You will probably need several specialized translators due to the diversity of content found on a website:
- Blog Entries
- Product pages
- Legal information
- General terms and conditions of sale
A single freelance translator, for example, will not be able to cover all these specialities. Also, a translation agency will offer you other services and guarantees such as
- Provide a final text revised and corrected by several translators.
- Offer the guarantee of confidentiality.
- Supervise your project and give you advice.
Determine your objectives to advise you on relevant content for the target country, improve the company's search engine positioning etc. As you may have noticed, translating a whole website requires a lot of work. However, with good preparation and a quality translator, you will be able to tackle this type of project perfectly.
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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.