Arabic Translation

Fast turnaround label and and packaging translation for the retail sector

Proofreaders checking a translation for quality assurance

Do you need high quality Arabic translation?

We offer a fast, and accurate Arabic translation service for business. Our translators are Arabic native, and professionally qualified. We have over 30 years experience translating into Arabic for top international brands. Clients include Mothercare, Early Learning Centre, Debenhams, Mulberry and Burberry.

Reasons for choosing Better Languages

  • 30 years experience of translating Arabic
  • Trusted by top international brands
  • ISO: 9001 Certified Quality Management System
  • Professionally qualified native linguists
  • Full professional indemnity insurance with worldwide cover

Adapting the Better Languages website

When we decided to translate our own website into Arabic, there were a number of key considerations. These were important for us to produce a culturally sensitive and relevant website. It wasn’t about just translating words on a page. Of course correct wording and readability was really important. There were many localisation issues, including position of images. This is because we had to “flip” pages relative to the English version. We also had to consider appropriateness of the images chosen.

Our aim was to portray a western translation company which was sensitive and relevant to an Arabic audience. We had to consider suitability of page layout, as Arabic readers scan a page right to left. This results in opposite rules to an equivalent English page. In English, because the eye is drawn to the left, images tend to be located to the right. This draws the eye across the page. In Arabic, the opposite applies, as your eye is naturally drawn to the right.

Use of colour needs to be quite different for an Arabic audience. This is because there are different colour symbolisms and preferences amongst Arabs compared with other cultures. Rather than trying to guess an appropriate colour pallet, we market tested. We produced a variety of colour schemes, and sought opinions from our target audience. The use of green was quite deliberate, as a favoured colour within the Arab world. Our colour choice was as close as possible to Lincoln Green, because of the association with Nottingham.

We also had to localise the content, not just translate it. We thought about which pages to translate, and what would be relevant to our target audience.

Native translators:

Your translations will be undertaken by a professional translator who is native of the target language. So for English to Arabic translation, we use an Arabic native. However for Arabic to English translation, we use English native. We can also localise into different versions of English or Arabic depending on individual client requirements.

Arabic language use:

Arabic is the official language of 27 different states. This makes it the third most registered official language after English and French. There are also two major written variations, Classical Arabic and Modern Standard Arabic. Nearly all translations for commercial use are in the standardised form of the language. This is referred to as Modern Standard Arabic (often abbreviated to MSA). However, we can also supply translations into or from Classical Arabic if required.

Our Arabic Translation specialisms include:

Marketing translation can be particularly tricky in Arabic. This is due to the need to localise for a specific country. Even though we normally translate into a Modern Standard Arabic, there can be important nuances for individual countries. Areas of work such as interpreting and voiceovers, require particular attention. This is because spoken Arabic has many different dialects. It is also some important to appreciate that there are important cultural differences between countries and regions.

Thinking of the Arabic world as a single entity, is a bit like thinking about Europe as a single entity. Europe has diversity in many ways other than language – culture, political systems, economic diversity, legal systems to name just a few. Arabic territories are equally diverse.

Potential issues with Arabic translations

Many people consider written Arabic to be one of the most beautiful and unique scripts in the world.

Arabic using the Microsoft Office Suite:

There is very good cross compatibility of text these days.  Any of the Microsoft Office programmes such as Word, Excel, or PowerPoint work well with Arabic script.  There can occasionally be problems in Excel. Most commonly this is where there is a mixture of text directions. For example an English brand name appearing within the Arabic text. The issue is that an individual cell can corrupt the word order.

Arabic translation applied to artwork

All major artwork programmes such as Quark, Illustrator or InDesign, have issues with Arabic script. This is also the case with other right to left languages. Modern versions of the programmes come with Arabic fonts enabled. However, the problem is that they render from left to right. The impact of this is that the text will corrupt and not render properly.

The result is that what should be a joined up flowing text, ends up with letters inverted and broken up. It isn’t that the text doesn’t look very good (which it doesn’t), it becomes totally illegible.

The solution is that we need to correctly set it using the Middle Eastern version of the programme. Depending on the software, we are likely to need to supply it as an outlined EPS file. This prevents it corrupting again when dropped into the standard version of the programme.

We can solve this by typesetting the script for you using the Middle Eastern version of the required program. We work with most major programs including Adobe Illustrator, or InDesign as well as Quark. Just send us an email or call us to discuss your requirements and we will be able to assist.

Proofing Your Translation

Better Languages also offers an Arabic artwork proofing service for finished artwork before it goes to print. One of our specialist translators will check your artwork. We work hard to make sure the translated text on your artwork displays correctly. This in turn means you can be at ease knowing your final printed artwork will be to the highest standard. There is an extra charge for this service. However, we really believe there is no substitute for a translator checking the final version of the artwork.

Contact Better Languages today to discuss your need for Arabic translation services.