|4 Min. Read||Jessica Rivera||July 29, 2020|
To succeed in today's ever-competitive marketplace, most businesses are expanding into global markets. But to win in those frontiers, they need translated websites that literally speak their new customers' languages.
Website translation delivers big benefits, like increased customer trust, accessibility and a better overall user experience. In fact, it’s naïve to think website translation is a “nice to have.” At least 75% percent of global customers prefer to do business in their native language.
You can tackle website translation in two primary ways—with translations provided by humans, or with software (aka machine translation). Both have advantages and disadvantages. Ultimately, your choice should be informed by which one will best enable you to:
Website translation is no longer a “nice to have.” 75% of global customers want to conduct business in their preferred language.
Machine translation solutions from companies like Google and Bing have come a long way in the past five years. And breakthroughs in neural machine translation have made machine translation an increasingly viable option for some businesses.
There are certainly advantages to translating your website with machine translation, including:
The disadvantages, however, quickly pile up when you examine how machine translation still doesn’t come close to how human beings actually speak to each other:
Machine translation is fast and affordable, but falls short for brands that demand linguistic accuracy and authenticity.
Out of the gate, the advantages of human translation address most of the cons of the machine approach:
Historically, the primary con of human translation has been the cost. But powerful turn-key solutions now exist that can leverage technologies, processes and unique expertise to eliminate much of the cost often associated with website translation. More on this in a moment.
Human translation reflects cultural awareness, and delivers messaging that resonates with local customers.
Another way to address website translation costs is by combining both approaches. An ideal hybrid approach uses human translation for high-trafficked pages where nuance, messaging and context are crucial. Machine translation can then be used for less brand-sensitive content such as product pages, where word choice is not as important.
As you explore website translation solutions, look for a partner that can help you achieve success through a translation process that is, ideally, invisible to the reader.
That means finding a technology and turn-key solution that’s as nimble and flexible as your needs. These solutions can provide world-class human and machine translation options for your multilingual websites, and accommodate unique requests—such as using the hybrid approach on specific webpages, or within specific sections of webpages—to deliver superior results while controlling costs.
These smart solutions use industry-leading technologies and processes to nearly eliminate cost as a decision making factor. By combining the efficiency of technologies (found in machine translation and powerful translation management tools) and the brilliance of human translators, your website translation projects can be completed within incredibly tight deadlines, while ensuring world class, brand-perfect translations.