It’s Monday again and I got to thinking in regard to why clients are so persistent in some cases regrading translations. To be clear I am talking about their persistence that it is okay to use Google translate instead of a real translator for languages other than the languages they know natively. I am against this practice. I will outline two simple reasons why. Here goes:

1.   It makes your business seem unprofessional

First and foremost, you need to look at this as a user of another website not our own. When visiting a website let’s assume you are viewing it in your native language let take Greek as an example. You visit the homepage and you check the menu and it says the page is called Σπίτι which in Greek does actually mean home, but it refers to an actual house and not a homepage. For clarification in Greek it should say either Αρχική or Αρχική Σελίδα. My point is not to teach Greek. My point is that as a native I would run for the hills rather than purchase any service from a website that has incorrect translations on it. It throws me off in terms of how trustworthy the site may be.

2.   It leads to loss of clientele and sales

I am assuming you want to make money from your website whether you sell products or services. Based on that assumption you probably want to reach as many potential clients as possible. Since you have a website and assuming that you may want to target clients from outside your country in addition to those in your country, translation is the logical step to take. Now let’s assume you use Google translate instead of a real translator what do you think will happen when a Greek person for example visits your website and that person does not speak or read English at all? They will look for the language switcher, right? Let’s say for the sake of argument they find one, but it uses a machine generated translation, how willing will this client be to buy anything if you couldn’t even be bothered to translate the content correctly? I bet the odds are slim to none. Lesson learnt: If you are going for a multi-lingual website do it the right way.


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Web Development 1013 reasons why human translations are better than machine generated ones for your website