You’ve made the decision and you want to solve the issue of your website only being in one language. But how do you translate a web page or your entire website?

First off, congratulations. Odds are, you’re ahead of the curve when it comes to your competitors. English is losing its status as the universal language of the internet, making this the ideal time to have an advantage and provide a better user experience.

In fact, a statistic we love here is that 72.1% of consumers spend the majority of time in websites of their native language and 56.2% of consumers believe it is more important than price.

Google search in German to illustrate how to translate a web pate

How do you translate a web page?

It all depends what’s on the page. Most web pages should be content heavy to engage the audience with a great call-to-action at the bottom of it – depending on your service or product.

The first thing you start with is the copy on the page which would be a good job for a transcreation service. Transcreation is a more creative translation that packs the punch of the original message in its target language.

Layout may need changing too. If the language is a right-to-left, then the entire layout will need changing on the site. If it’s something like Mongolian which is typically written vertically, the page layout will need a full overhaul and can complicate matters further.

Images can also need localisation. If you have images with text then it will be likely that you need the source file to transcreate the language within the images, but it goes further than that. Some images don’t have the same meaning in different countries and could be inappropriate.

If there is coding on the page, you may require a technical expert to work on the development side.

Videos are the new rich content that is starting to become more frequent as a part of a company’s marketing strategy. There are two different ways to approach this: voiceovers and subtitling. Voiceovers can also include dubbing if you want to the script synced to the lips of those on screen. Subtitles are the most cost-effective solution which gives the user the choice of all the languages. In addition to this, there is a huge SEO bonus by choosing subtitles.

Speaking of SEO, multilingual SEO is an additional service that is available as an option as a client. This requires keyword research and optimising of all the meta-tags, alt-text of images and the ilk. Multilingual SEO is another service but a service that is best suited to a full website translation.

How do you translate a website?

Well, it’s all of the things above and a little more. Instead of for one page, depending on your priorities, it can be all your pages and blog posts to keep your site content rich for search engines. In addition to this, a full website test can be done to ensure that everything runs smoothly.

What you should definitely not do when translating your website is use a free search engine tool like Google. Google Translate is not only a flawed system for translation, it is indeed against Google Webmaster Guidelines which can incur penalties or reduce your site’s overall search engine ranking.

Websites have a complicated word count so is the project planned. Thankfully, there are a few tools that can be used to scan the site for an estimate of the word count to plan the project. From there, the planning can begin as you embark on the journey to solve a user issue.

 

As you can see, there are several steps to website translation and it may look daunting, but a professional language service provider will know how to do this quickly and efficiently. Website translations are necessary to communicate with your users in a clear manner.

Can you afford to lose that amount of potential clients?

Get ahead of the game by translating your website and having a full look at our range of services.

by Ashley Norris

Content and Social Media Executive at Wolfestone. Ashley Norris is a professional writer in various forms, a First Class film graduate from Aberystwyth University and an experienced digital marketer. Despite his young age, Ashley has been working in digital marketing since its inception into the mainstream, acquiring over six years of experience inadvertently on social media platforms - a powerful marketing tool - and content management systems (primarily WordPress). Since working at Wolfestone, Ashley has explored his content writing skills, fully learnt SEO (even its multilingual benefits), practised graphic design on Adobe packages and continues to do video production to continue on from his degree.