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A Complete Guide to Website Translation


Mystified by how to translate your website? Trouvez les réponses à vos questions sur les technologies de traduction, les meilleures pratiques, etc.

What is Website Translation?

La traduction de sites Web est le processus consistant à prendre le contenu de votre site dans sa version originale et à l'adapter, souvent mot à mot, dans d'autres langues pour le rendre accessible et navigable pour les clients internationaux.

Le contenu traduisible de votre site Web va du texte statique au contenu multimédia comme les images, vidéos et PDF. Mais c'est aussi :

Ces éléments peuvent et doivent être traduits pour s'assurer que les clients bénéficient d'une expérience immersive dans leurs langues.

Il existe différents niveaux de traduction tels que la traduction traditionnelle, la localisation, la translittération, et la transcréation. Chaque approche est unique et répond à différents besoins de traduction. Learn more details about the different types of translation.

Customers prefer visiting websites in their native language

Is Website Localization The Same as Website Translation?

Although website translation and localization are commonly confused, both are related methods of creating multilingual websites. Website localization goes beyond the linguistic word-for-word conversion of conventional translation to create an online experience that resonates within specific markets. Localiser un site Web fait appel à cinq éléments clés :

  1. Langues et régionalismes : le choix des mots est tel qu'il vient précisément et de manière authentique véhiculer le message de la marque au profit des clients locaux. Cela inclut des tournures qui peuvent être utilisées uniquement dans certains pays ou régions.
  2. Éléments culturels : prendre en compte les formats de dates et d'heures locales, les unités de mesure, les jours fériés et les valeurs auxquels s'identifie l'utilisateur.
  3. Éléments transactionnels : pour être précis et inspirer la confiance, les éléments comme les devises, les modes de paiement, les adresses et les jeux de caractères doivent parler aux clients locaux.
  4. Éléments de communication et de confiance : les numéros de téléphone locaux, les adresses, le service client, les mentions légales et les bannières de sécurité sont autant d'éléments clés permettant de gagner la confiance des clients locaux. Ils servent aussi aux équipes de vente et de marketing locales pour fournir des informations aux clients.
  5. Navigation et identification : il est essentiel que les utilisateurs sélectionnent la langue qu'ils recherchent et interagissent immédiatement avec votre site de façon authentique.

Utiliser les localisations génère plus d'intérêt et d'engagement chez les clients. Learn more about website localization, including how to execute it in persuasive ways.

How to Translate Your Website

Traduire et localiser votre site Web est une problématique essentiellement technologique requérant automatisation et logiciels pour générer les nombreux flux et processus. En général, il existe trois technologies différentes qui peuvent être utilisées pour gérer ces flux :

Lisez la suite pour en savoir plus sur ces approches. Pour encore plus de détails à ce sujet, consultez notre e-book Les technologies de traduction.

Using a Translation Proxy for Website Translation

With the proxy localization approach to website translation, technologies are used to leverage the content and structured code of your flagship website. Ceci permet de traduire, déployer et gérer simplement les versions multilingues. Cette approche peut être entièrement proposée clé en main, c'est-à-dire sans effort particulier pour le client en termes de lancement ou de maintenance des sites Web localisés ou de gestion des flux.

A proxy-based system is layered on top of your website to dynamically translate content in real time so that end users worldwide can view your website in their local language. Essentially, it's like a mirror is being held up to your site, and the reflections are fully translated versions. Proxies are intermediary servers that retrieve content from your server (also known as a client server), translate it in real-time either through machine translation or by taking from a set of previously approved translations, and then display the translated content to end users on your website.

Les sites localisés étant conçus à partir du contenu et du code de votre site Web principal, l'expérience utilisateur et les fonctionnalités sont cohérentes pour l'ensemble des sites. Cette continuité garantit aussi que le nouveau contenu est facilement et automatiquement détecté, traduit et publié.

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Using CMS Connectors for Website Translation

For companies that prefer to store and control translated content internally (rather than with a translation vendor), it’s possible to translate a website with a CMS connector. Le connecteur permet au contenu d'être envoyé à un prestataire de traduction avant d'être réintégré sur le CMS pour publication.

A CMS (content management system) is an application used to publish and manage content on your website intuitively. Examples of platforms include WordPress (WPML), Drupal, and Adobe Experience Manager. Using a CMS simplifies maintaining site content for the site administrator or content manager, especially for large websites with multiple sub-pages. In addition, CMS plug-ins allow for efficient and straightforward management of a website's various language versions directly from the content management system.

For example, a CMS eliminates the need to alter the underlying HTML code of a website when changing content; instead, new content and images can easily be entered and edited through a protected area called the "back end." Customers would send content ready for translation to the language service provider (LSP) in the given source language through the back end. The finished translations are sent back to the CMS, where the website administrator or content manager checks them before publication.

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Using an API for Website Translation

A translation application programming interface (API) is typically provided by a translation provider and has a broader scope than a CMS connector. It allows companies to create workflows for any type of content requiring translation, not just content stored in a CMS.

A translation API is a way to pass content between two computer systems (content that needs to be translated and the content that has been translated). It's a software interface that developers can use to add machine translation capabilities to their products or programmatically translate texts and content that their product displays in localized versions.

APIs can be valuable tools to facilitate continuous localization needed for multilingual site updates. Tasks such as monitoring source materials for updates, creating projects, assigning translators, and downloading and uploading files are administrative time sinks that can use up a lot of the project manager's attention, but this is where an API functionality shines. It's a precursor to accessing features that will automate tasks.

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Machine translation has its benefits and drawbacks

Human vs. Machine Website Translation

In addition to the translation technology methods outlined above, you’ll also need to consider whether to pursue human or machine translation when translating your website.

Human translation involves the translation of content by professional linguists fluent in their international customers' industries, brands, languages, and cultures. Studies show that human translation generates superior engagement, conversions, and credibility among multilingual customers because human translation ensures superior translation accuracy and quality assurance due to human editorial oversight and multi-step review processes. In addition, website content can be easily customized for regionally preferred dialects and phrases.

Machine translation uses computer software to translate text from one language to another. Content is fed to machine translation software, which automatically translates content into the target language without human involvement. Machine translation allows businesses to use "machines" such as Google Translate to translate content at scale. Machine translation is often an integrated feature within localization platforms and is used by companies looking to lower their translation costs. It's effective for content that does not require translation precision and extensive copywriting.

Neural machine translation (NMT) uses deep learning techniques and artificial intelligence (AI) to analyze the source sentence and find patterns to create a suitable translation in the destination language. This technology is based on deep neural networks, an interconnected series of "nodes" modeled after the human brain. Before translating, NMT software will be given training data such as different examples of translations for a certain text. The software is then "trained" to produce the most accurate translation.

Translation proxy systems, CMS, or API translation systems all utilize machine translation to translate website content. However, a hybrid approach to translation is generally recommended. For example, Google Translate can easily translate content and then it can be reviewed again by editorial and quality assurance teams for accuracy and relevance. This can come in handy for content like product descriptions or other straightforward content that doesn't need a lot of emotional nuances or cultural localization context.

2 Examples of Successful Website Translation

Aventa Credit Union

 

Aventa Credit Union is located in the Colorado Springs area and is expanded into more southern Colorado counties, resulting in member growth from Spanish-speaking communities. Aventa wanted to ensure all their members had access to financial resources in their preferred language, so they decided to translate their website into Spanish. In 2020, Aventa focused on hiring bilingual Spanish-speaking associates and leveraged their workers' fluency in Spanish to translate English content for their website. But, this took away from other work employees were hired to perform. Employees who knew Spanish also didn't know the same Spanish, resulting in inconsistent translations.

Aventa hired MotionPoint in 2021 during a rebranding effort to translate and localize website content for the various Spanish dialects their clients speak. Using translation connectors, a reverse-proxy system, and web plugins, Aventa's content translation and localization is now effortless. New content is quickly localized into Spanish and published on Aventa's digital channels in less than a day with little to no work required from them.


VITAS Healthcare

VITAS Healthcare is the nation's leading provider of end-of-life care. They recognized the complexities and cultural sensitivities around end-of-life care and dying topics. They determined that offering content in local languages, including through multilingual websites, would greatly benefit customer service and support. VITAS set out to translate their website to Chinese and Spanish and searched for a website translation solution company to deploy and operate multilingual websites. They also wanted to ensure high-quality and accurate translations, including reflecting the language's original tone and cultural nuances, so they looked for a service that provided human translation support.

VITAS worked with MotionPoint's proxy-based technology to support their careful, culturally-appropriate language needs. Now, MotionPoint can automatically identify changes to VITAS' English-language site, which alerts MotionPoint's human translators to translate content and makes it available on the localized sites - typically within one business day.

Website Translation vs. Traditional Translation

La traduction de sites Web requiert des nuances techniques que les agences de traduction traditionnelles ont du mal à gérer. Parmi ces nuances :

Les solutions de traduction traditionnelles ne distinguent pas le code du contenu, ne savent pas gérer la coordination des flux multiples en termes de plateformes et de contributeurs, ne peuvent pas suivre le rythme des constantes mises à jour et ont du mal à préserver l'apparence, le style et les fonctionnalités de votre site Web.

Thankfully, digital-first solutions can easily handle code, multiple platforms, fast deadlines and more.

Challenges of Website Translation

Au-delà de la technologie de traduction, voici quelques défis notables à prendre en considération pour la traduction de sites Web. Suivez les liens pour en savoir plus et connaître les meilleures pratiques.

 

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