Many business owners acknowledge that translating their website’s content will help them to meet marketing goals. The reason is simple: a multilingual website can attract viewers from different markets across the world, boosting a site’s authority in the eyes of the search engine. We’re reaching a turning point, in fact, where a multiple language website is becoming a business necessity rather than a luxury.
According to a Common Sense Advisory Report, “72% of internet buyers are more likely to buy from a website written in their own language.” That being said, the process can become quite convoluted depending on your site’s content management system (CMS), as well as the site architecture. We’ve designed this post to provide helpful tips that will make the website translation process smoother.
Adapt Your Writing For Translation
Unfortunately, many writers create original content without considering localization, which puts a strain on the translation process, often resulting in longer translation times and higher costs. Granted, this tip may not always be applicable if all of your website content was created years ago. However, if you are writing new content for your site and you expect that you would like to translate your website later on, there are a few things you can keep in mind when writing. First, simplicity is key. Be sure to keep your writing simple, which will make it easier to translate. Avoid ambiguous writing as well as the inappropriate use of terminology that readers may not understand. Vague writing that is littered with jargon will inevitably require revisions in all target language versions. If you want to reduce turnaround time, and improve the quality of target language content, make sure you create grammatically correct, clear and concise source content.
Make Sure Your Translation Company Offers Translation Memory
We’ve mentioned this frequently in earlier posts, but it bears repeating: translation memory software (TM) is incredibly helpful and cost-effective. Translation memory software works to remember strings of similar text, so that translators don’t need to spend resources re-translating this text.
Pick Templates That Cater To Global Website Design
For all future content creation, it’s best to use a template that can handle text changes for translation. Basically, you want to remember that the site template will have to be able to accommodate text expansion, different text characters, and in some cases, bi-directional text. A common area that’s most prone to issues is the horizontal navigation bar, which needs to be able to accommodate varied text lengths. In this case, it may be worthwhile to have a brief discussion with your web developer before discussing the matter with a translation company. This tip will help you to save on design and development costs.
Optimize For Multilingual Search
You’d be hard pressed to expect that translating your website will automatically bring a rush of new customers from across the globe. While that is certainly the goal, your site will need to be optimized for search engines using the new target languages. Simply, this includes updated page titles, relevant keywords for the URLs, link building, insightful meta descriptions, etc.
Note: Plan Ahead For Your Maintenance and Updates
If you know that you will be regularly updating your site with new content and relevant information, it’s important that you understand that performing maintenance or updates will take additional time since the content will need to be translated. Additionally, there could be complications depending on your businesses’ target languages. Plan your maintenance and upgrades around your ability to handle these issues, and be sure to talk to your translation company about your editorial calendar and plans to add additional content.