We are busy trying to improve our page content and visitor experience. Have you ever read well ranking sites and wondered why yours doesn’t rate as highly? In the translation industry many companies resort to link bait like free translation tools. We haven’t gone there. This is because we believe free translation services offer a misleading impression. You are led to believe that you can just upload your document, and get it instantly translated for free.

Free translation

There is of course a slight catch. What appears to be “free”, isn’t. At least not if you need to rely upon it in a professional context.

As we all know, language is very complex. “Free” machine translation tools like Google translate use databases of tons of text in order to try and render a translation. They do have some merit. For example do you just need the gist of an email or a web page. It will give you that, but not much more.

Simple translation errors

If translation is not human authored you risk very simple errors. For example we were asked to proofread a label translation some time ago which included the Spanish translation for “turkey feathers”. The client had clearly used a free translation service, as the translation read “feathers from Turkey”. The problem was that in English, “turkey” has two possible meanings, the country, or the bird. Here the intended meaning, for a fibre composition declaration was the bird, not the country.

Spanish has two different words the bird being “pavo”, the country “Turkquia”. As you can see these are completely different to each other. Print that on 5000 garments, and you’ll probably have to have them recalled. A much higher cost than the price of proper professional label translation.