Top 5 Translation Mistakes

Rubbing out the Top 5 translation mistakes

Top 5 translation mistakes you don’t want to make

Translation offers many benefits for your company; it can help you sell more, open up new markets and drive engagement with existing clients. However, don’t let these Top 5 translation mistakes spoil it!

#1 Not using a professional translation agency

Many people are tempted to turn to a friend, colleague or even a computer, thinking they can save a few pounds. This is a big mistake. However well-meaning, an amateur translator can make people laugh at you or, worse, leave your company facing a lawsuit. A professional translation protects your company’s image overseas.

#2 Setting unrealistically tight deadlines

Although translation is often the last stage in the marketing process, it shouldn’t be the last thing on your mind. If you don’t leave enough time to complete the translation, you run the risk of a rush job that can jeopardise your earlier hard work.

#3 Making changes to the copy half-way through 

As with anything in life, the more times you change something, the more it’s going to cost you. Don’t waste your precious budget – only start the translation process once you’ve had the final version of the English copy signed off. However, don’t stick too rigidly to the English text; what works in one market, might need to be adapted when translated into German or translated into French to work better for the foreign audience.

#4 Comparing apples with pears

When getting quotes for a translation, make sure you’re comparing like for like. Some agencies tempt you with seemingly low prices, but sting you for hidden extras like proofreading, certification or surcharges for so-called ‘technical’ texts. Always ask what the final price will be before assigning the job.

#5 Not getting a translation checked over by a second pair of eyes

Whilst a professional translator will always strive to produce the best possible translation, there’s no substitute for having it checked by a second professional prior to going to print. Think about it – you had a colleague check over the English version, so it makes sense to do the same with the translation. That way you can be sure a text bearing your company’s name is as polished as can be.