London, despite Brexit, remains one of the key players within the European marketplace, for both – the companies as well as consumers themselves. With thousands of international businesses operating from this vibrant and multicultural city, choosing it as their primary location, languages and fast translation have become a significant part of the corporate world and translation services agencies are now key partners for a number of businesses across different sectors.
As world today is a much smaller place than it was even 20 years ago, with continuous developments in technology and rapid globalisation, London based companies and organisations are able to approach international customers with ease, without the need of physical presence abroad.
Although the way business is conducted has changed significantly in the recent years, a number of aspects affecting the consumer behaviour remain the same. One of the most important factors which can even today directly affect how a consumer perceives a brand and directly impact their purchasing habits is the use of language.
A study by the Common-Sense Advisory found that 9 out of 10 customers feel more inclined to a purchase if the information is available to them in their native language. This is an astonishing, although not a surprising, number.
As a result, companies realise that in order to successfully approach international customers, both abroad and on the home turf, they must speak to them in their native language – and this is where translation agencies can help.
Deciding which materials to translate can be a difficult task, especially for SMEs without previous experience in translating their documents. To help those businesses, we’ve prepared a guide which may help you in understanding what materials you should consider translating initially and what benefits working with a professional translation agency can bring to your company.
Foremost – online
Translating your company’s website is one of the most important aspects of approaching international customers. In many cases, whether you own a physical store or not, your business’s website will be an initial point of contact between your organisation and a potential customer.
Ensuring that a visitor is able to read about your products & services in their native language can be extremely beneficial in terms of direct sales, but also indirectly through building a professional and friendly image of your company, consequently being advantageous in the long run.
Translating a website, however, often requires much more than a simple word-for-word language conversion.
In the digital world, images, colours and other visuals play an important role and those can affect customer’s behaviour similarly to written text. Consequently, when choosing a translation agency to work with, ensure to ask about website localisation service – this covers not only the translation of written text, but also other components of a website such as colours etc. which can mean and be associated with different things in different cultures, and so it’s important to localise them carefully.
Other marketing materials
Although carefully translating and localising the company’s website should be your priority, translating other marketing materials such as leaflets, brochures or even business cards can be equally beneficial. By doing so, you allow your customers and business partners to become familiar with your offers. This can be especially true if your organisation has a physical presence within the foreign market.
Don’t forget legal
Translating your marketing materials such as website or brochure can benefit your company in terms of customer acquisition and sales, but you also shouldn’t forget about conveying the legal documents such as contracts, T&Cs or warranties into your chosen market’s native language. This can prove beneficial in the long run, in case of any legal disputes.
How to find an expert UK based translation agency?
The translation industry is extremely competitive. In London alone, there are hundreds of translation agencies, specialising in different sectors and languages. For a business owner looking to translate material this is good news; similarly to any other sector, competition increases the quality of service and lowers the price. Nonetheless, it can also unfortunately cause a dilemma, as choosing the right translation agency from a large pool of providers can be problematic.
In order to choose the right translation provider for your business, start by checking their specialisation. Some language agencies, such as ‘Creative Translations’ can be experts in conveying marketing materials, whilst others specialise in translating legal documents. On the other hand however, there are professional translation agencies in the UK, such as the London based Translation Services 24, which are able to work with documents from a number of different areas and across a great number of languages, which can be tremendously useful if you are planning to translate a mixture of different materials.
Additionally, before choosing a translation services provider you wish to partner with, make sure that the linguists working on your documents/materials are native speakers of the target language – this ensures not only linguistic accuracy, but also cultural suitability.
Read reviews and ask for translation samples
Before going ahead with a translation company, one of the best ways to judge the quality of their work is to read online reviews. In places such as Google Reviews or Trustpilot you can read honest reviews from customers who have previously translated with the agency in question. Also, websites such as Cluch are a great space to explore translation providers and read their reviews from professionals who work within your particular business sector.
Additionally, you can ask the TSP directly for a free sample translation, which will allow you to judge the quality of their work and make a final decision whether they are able to accurately translate your materials and documents.
Deciding which documents your business should translate can be a difficult decision, especially for SMEs with a limited budget. Nonetheless, although professional translation can sometimes be costly, again, depending on the type and amount of materials you need to convey, they can prove to be extremely beneficial for any business targeting international markets and customers in the long run. It is however extremely important to remember that the translation agency you choose to work with, must be fully and legally accredited by an association recognised in the United Kingdom, such as the ATC (Association of translation companies). This ensures highest quality of service as well as guarantees a professional approach to your project, regardless of its size.
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