A quick search for website translation software on Google will garner hundreds of pages of results. With all the information out there, it’s challenging to figure out which service is best for your business needs. When considering options, it may help to focus on your end goals to see how offered services will support them.
Ideally, software should take much of the burden of project management off your plate while supporting better content. You should seek out four critical components in website translation software: context, connectivity, collaboration, and complete project support.
Two Types of Website Translation Support Tools
The tools designed to help you translate a website can be a bit overwhelming. It helps to break them down into two categories in order to fully understand their value. Some are targeted directly at clients, while others focus on linguist support.
1. Client Tools
Client-side tools in website translation software focus on project management as well as ensuring consistency. Options may include:
- Connectors: Connectors funnel content from one platform to another to allow for faster uploading and downloading.
- Workflows: Translation programs often use email for sending documents back and forth. A localization management platform eliminates this by offering a single collaborative place for communicating with linguists.
- Machine translation (MT): MT allows clients to quickly translate content using natural language processing, machine learning, and other advanced tools. It’s excellent for simple translations, but may fall flat in more complex cases.
- Encryption: Encryption ensures confidentiality by keeping content locked in a single space where bad actors can’t view it. This tool is essential for sensitive translations.
2. Linguist Support
Computer-aided translation tools may not be visible to project managers, but they make their jobs easier by supporting linguists. Common options include:
- Translation memories (TM): TMs store the content of clients to ensure translation consistency. TMs can combine corporate glossaries, lexicons, and vernacular to provide client-specific content.
- Preview panels: The ability to see how content will appear once translated is invaluable for linguists. It provides context that helps them make better translation decisions and improve results.
Automated suggestions: Automated suggestions are powered by machine translation. As the linguist works, translation tips will appear in a separate panel that they can accept or reject based on the project. In the best programs, changes they make based on this information improve the translation memory.
These tools–among others–can help to support the critical components that streamline project management and ensure a better overall ROI.
4 Crucial Qualities in Website Translation Software
While many translation software programs are available, most don’t offer enough to provide a complete end-to-end experience. Website translation services should utilize a series of tools that support context, connectivity, collaboration, and complete project support.
Context is essential to translation; linguists who don’t understand the “why” behind the translation tend to make serious mistakes. For example, the word “home” can carry a lot of different meanings. It may refer to the site’s home page, the individual’s home address, or the company’s headquarters. It becomes very difficult for linguists to know which translation to use without context.
There are a few ways to deliver the critical context needed for proper translation:
- Review panel tools that allow linguists to see how content will be displayed.
- Comments within the code that help linguists understand the purpose of the text so they can make the best decisions when translating.
Connectivity refers to the tools that you can use to filter one program to another. Through this, you can easily monitor sites on platforms like WordPress, Drupal, and Adobe Experience Manager, as well as schedule projects and push content live. The right connectors and processes can fully support translation automation.
The top connectors don’t just support the uploading and downloading of pages; they also help make critical business decisions. Specific integrations will use the data garnered from the translation management platform to provide feedback on user engagement, popular pages, and high-performing content.
Project management during website translation can quickly evolve into a full-time job. You’ll have to monitor the site for changes, schedule jobs, follow up on projects, and push content live.
Using a collaborative platform can improve management by allowing you to set up crawlers to monitor content for changes and schedule updates. With this information, the platform can then automatically assign linguists based on their respective work history with you. You’ll also be able to watch the progress of all projects in real-time, eliminating many of the challenges associated with project management.
#4: Complete project support
Many translation agencies view jobs on a per-string basis. Linguists work on the strings independently without knowledge of the overall bigger picture. This narrowly focused working strategy creates issues in project governance. At Bureau Works, we look beyond strings, creating projects with a beginning, middle, and end. This process simplifies governance since you can request the completion of an entire project rather than a collection of strings.
With the right tools and connections, it’s possible to create automated website translation software that makes maintenance much more manageable. You can trigger jobs, monitor projects, and review results all in a single, comprehensive space. This end-to-end solution can help you manage your project much more effectively and control long-term costs.