Do you want to know what kind of website translation costs you should expect for your next multilingual website?
If you are looking to maximize the potential audience for your website, you are going to have to fine-tune the experience. One of the main things to start with is to translate your content into multiple languages. Right now, you are probably thinking that translating a current website, sounds like something costly to do, but that is not necessarily the case.
The truth is that you have various options, and they vary in price, speed, and even in complexity. This means you can find many methods that suit not only your budget, but also your needs.
In this article, we will take a look at 5 of the best ways you can create an appropriate multilanguage website. We will explain how they work and what the cost would be in most cases.
Why having a multilingual website can be a clever investment
If you want to have your website translated, you might want to jump directly into the five methods below, however, if you are still on the fence, it might be good for you to take a moment in order to analyze why it is a smart thing to do.
An example of a website translated to Spanish
There are some situations when translating your website is not necessary. For example, if you are running a local physical store, you are probably not going to need to attract many website visitors from other countries (unless your business target only foreigners!). In most other cases, the translation must be something to consider.
If you only offer your website in one language, your potential audience will be restricted and that could be a problem for online businesses. If you create a multilingual site, you can:
- Reach a larger audience and demographics that your competitors might not be visualizing and targeting
- Bring in some potential extra revenue and conversions
- Make your website much more valuable in the market
Regardless of all the advantages, you may find some people immediately dismiss the opportunity of a translation. This happens mainly because they assume it would be too expensive, too difficult, or in the worst-case scenario, both things will be an issue. The reality is that, if you decide to translate your page, you are going to have to invest some money or some time, but the end results will usually translate to more profit.
The best ways to translate your website (and the costs you should expect)
If you are thinking about creating a multilingual website, the first thing you need to do is to familiarize yourself with all the options that you have at your disposal. There are several ways to go about the whole process and of course, each one of these methods has pros and cons.
The cost of a website translation might vary depending on the approach you take, so with that in mind, we will show you five different ways for you to translate your website and what you can expect from each one of them.
Let’s talk about time and money!
#1 – Perform a do-it-yourself, manual translation
We are about to discuss the most straightforward, but at the same time, the most difficult option which is translating your whole site manually. You can just take the content on your website and translate it by yourself manually in another language. Something to consider is that if you or someone on your team is going to use this method, you must be sure that you speak that language perfectly.
Another disadvantage of this method is that also takes the longest time, especially if your website has a lot of content. On the other hand, doing a manual translation is free of charge if you it’s done at 100% by you.
If your site is small, and you speak one or more of the same languages as your audience does, this method is definitely the best option for you.
#2 – Hire a professional translator
If you or any member of your team can’t translate your website, there’s always the option of hiring a professional translator. Even when this is another straightforward option, the problem is that it can be a bit more expensive. However, if we talk about the advantages, one of them is that there are a lot of great professional translators available for you at affordable rates.
You need to understand that the quality of your translated website will completely depend on how skilled your translator is, so it is essential to take some time to look into each translator’s past projects, testimonials, and most importantly, their experience.
One of the benefits of this approach is that if you choose the right translator, you will get an extremely accurate translation, but there are a couple of disadvantages.
One of them is money, as this is the most expensive option and the cost will be higher based on the translator’s experience. For example, most of the translators you can find on several platforms charge between 20 and 50 dollars per hour or something between $5 and $10 per page! The second disadvantage is the time because professional translators will have to go through your pages and posts and work on each one of them manually and that could take some time.
You need to be prepared to spend a few hundred dollars even if your website is small. This is a viable option for you if you have the money to spare and time to spend on the necessary costs of the website. You can get some comparison elements here.
OK now let’s dig into more modern technologies for translation to save time and money.
#3 – Leverage Computer-Assisted Translations
This probably sounds a little similar to the machine translation so can be a little confusing, however, there are some differences between the two. As we said before, machine translators are software that turns any language into another without human intervention, but computer-assisted translation is when a human performs the translation by using specialized software.
This option has some advantages; one of them is that it can be quicker and cheaper than the manual translation given that you will use software to ease the process, but it doesn’t actually rely completely on software, so the result will be a little bit more accurate. One of the disadvantages is that it is only a half solution because you will need to hire a professional translator to interact directly with the software.
#4 – Use an automatic Neural Machine Translation (NMT)
Today, computers can translate anything from one language into another, one example of that is Google Translate. So, there’s another option to create a multilingual website and that is by using machine translation, which means that it will be able to translate any content automatically without any human intervention.
You probably want to avoid a copy and paste of all your site’s text into Google Translate or any other translator but if end up doing it this way, your best option is to get a premium solution like Linguise. This way you will be sure that the result of your translation will be more accurate.
As it happens with hiring a professional translator, if you chose this option, the costs will vary as well; you can expect to spend some money for a decent machine translation algorithm and the results are rarely optimal.
#5 – Adopt a Hybrid approach for the website translation
As you can see, the four methods we mentioned above have their advantages but hey have their disadvantages as well. So, if you want to maximize speed, cost, and accuracy, you might want to adopt a hybrid approach. What does it mean? Well, it means you can use a combination of all the other four techniques to have access to all their benefits while minimizing any potential disadvantages.
For example, a good possible combination is to start using the machine translation option, and then you can have a person review and fix and correct the result as needed. This is the solution now used in most of the big companies as it’s faster and cheaper. You can practice this method by using a WordPress translation plugin, which will provide an effortless way to implement this specific method. The amount of translation revision by a translator depends on the translation language pair, i.e. English to Spanish requires 10% of content revision while Japanese to Portuguese will require 20%.
It’s important to remind you that you are not going to have your website translated for free, even when you or someone on your team is multilingual and can perform a translation by hand, the time you will be investing is going to be an expense it itself, and you know that famous saying: “Time is Money”.
Our recommendation is that you choose your best approach to ensure an outcome that is professional and reliable. You need to think about something that minimizes website translation costs but that at the same time, provides accurate and quick results to translate your content.