How do you know language translation services are paying off?
That is a big question, right? When you invest in language translation services, you want to see that it actually converts as many leads and gets you as many new customers as you anticipated. So, how can you measure a translation for how effective it is and determine whether the Return on Investment (ROI) is in keeping with what you need?
This blog will provide you with some useful tools that help you curb your investment before translation and measure how effective your efforts have been.
Your Translation Efforts = Your Business Goals
When your brand is out there on the global stage, all eyes are on you. Whether it is through your website, software, or apps, … anyone, anywhere, can research you, interact with you, and help you promote your brand – some might even undermine it. However, to build that level of trust and quality that will get you noticed in a good way, you need reliable language translation services.
What consumers respond to is a genuine native experience that feels like it is ever created just for them. It is a way to show you respect them for trusting your brand and offering a legitimate, culture-savvy experience in return. Letâ€™s look at an example.
Soft drink giant Coca-Cola is not where it is today by pure chance. The company puts a lot of research into its campaigns and designs and focuses on linguistic and cultural relevance. Have a look at this website design for the Argentinian market. We see that the content has been translated to Argentinian Spanish, but we also see the iconic red together with a bustling home page full of local news and interesting stories.
Why does this work?
Native expertise is skillfully applied to the website. Not only is the language adapted, but the cultural resonance and validity of the content are spot on. And this only works when a dedicated team of native, in-country experts with years of experience in your own niche is selected.
And while language translation services may seem like a steep investment at first, just think of what can happen if you invest in bad translations just to save a few bucks. To further talk about the Latin American market, car brand Mitsubishi made an embarrassing faux pas when it released its â€œPajeroâ€ model in Latin America, while Pajero refers to a lazy person or even a man who pleasures himself.1
ROI And Language Translation Services: The Numbers That Matter
So, how can we measure the quality of language translation services after the fact? How do you know language translation services are worth the effort? How do you know that translations in one, ten, or even twenty languages are done well?
There are some ways in which you can measure this objectively by leveraging a handful of key performance indicators (KPIs) that will help you evaluate and even predict the impact of your multilingual strategy. Weâ€™ll give you an overview of the most useful KPIs and throw in a few translation tips that will ensure the highest quality for your brand.
The market share metric will help you identify new possible locales and consumers you can reach with your global strategies. Companies that commit to language translation services are far more likely to get a generous share of the global market.
Data shows that only 20% of internet users are native English speakers and global industry leaders have their websites translated into an average of 33 languages.2 Too big of a slice to miss, right?
A clear indication of whether your international campaigns are working or not is by keeping a close eye on your conversion rates for every market you have translated into. Depending on the results, you can then adjust your strategies as you would with campaigns in the source language.
What is it that drives conversions? There are a few factors. There is an effective landing page design. Spot on SEO strategies. But most of all, you will need a copy that appeals, moves, and converts.
When it comes to driving conversion and boosting global reach, very specific language translation services such as transcreation may be needed. Transcreation skillfully combines translation with targeted, multilingual copywriting to create a native copy that will truly connect with your target audience.
Pro Tip! Learn more about the value of Transcreation in our blog What Is Transcreation And How Is It Best Managed?
Your website analytics are a real indication of how well you are doing in each market you are expanding into. How many people are visiting your site? Who is visiting which page? And how much time are they spending on this page?
If you feel like your metrics are off and yet you feel like you have had your website translated by a skillful professional, you may have forgotten about International SEO. Much like SEO is the foundation of your original content, it is vital for the success of your translated content as well.
You will need to understand which keywords are most effective for every single language, and then develop content around those. Most important here is that you abode the temptation of running your current keywords through a machine translation engine. Human translation is vital, since the choice for the perfect keyword is often locally defined.
Pro Tip! Does this sound just a little complicated? No worries! Have a look at our blog How To Apply International SEO To Your Multilingual Web Content
Revenue vs. Investment
What you will be focusing on most of all is how much money your language translation services cost you and how it compares to any possible profits. For some businesses, translation, especially the kind of services provided by a Languages Service Provider (LSP) may seem like a big investment.
However, these LSPs will have some tricks up their sleeves to make the price tag of that initial investment look a bit more friendly and to help you save a pretty penny down the road. More on that in the next section!
New Consumers Per Region
How many new customers have you secured in your targeted region? That will be a KPI you are no doubt keeping a keen eye out for. While it has to be said that achieving quality through translation, campaigns, marketing, and so on requires time, quality always wins big in the end.
Remember Coca-Colaâ€™s website for the Argentinian market? More than just translating into the right language, the site offered news and announcements that actually matter to the Argentinian market.
Now have a look at this reinvented Coca-Cola homepage design for the United States.
Here, Coca-Cola is not scared to get a little political. Equity and equality are pressing issues in the US right now, and Coca-Cola wants to share its commitment to the cause. Rather than the iconic red stealing the show, the sleek design is purely black and white, drawing attention to the coworkers and the single red can of coke on the table.
With global revenue of close to 40 billion and rising,3 the company has worked hard on its efforts to make its products culturally relevant. And it is paying off!
Letâ€™s Not Forget To Get That â€œInvestmentâ€ Part Of Language Translation Services Right
As promised, we will be dedicating a few words to curbing the investment part of your language translation services. After all, you want the quality that will get you where you need to be, but you want to keep it as economical as possible.
Faster Time to Market With The Right Tools
While we have focused on KPIs such as traffic and conversions, the real success of a quality ROI starts with the time to market. And here, certain technologies and tools that streamline your language translation services really come in handy.Imagine you are looking to hire an LSP to handle your transition to the global stage. Ideally, beyond native experts that provide quality content, they will leverage state-of-the-art translation tools that streamline the entire process.More specifically, they will make use of a Translation Management System (TMS) and Translation (CAT) tools. Together, these tools will reduce costs significantly and increase productivity by implementing automation strategies. More specifically, these tools will offer the following benefits.
- The CAT Tool is optimized with a Translation Memory (TM) that saves all previously translated words and segments. This means that you will never have to pay for the same translation twice. This TM together with effective terminology management also maintains consistency throughout the translated content.
- The TMS will help teams work together in a productive way, making the entire workflow more efficient.
- The CAT Tool also comes with the added perk of continuous translation, which will also save you time and money in the long run. Continuous translation means that any updates your website, app, or software may need, are carefully extracted, translated, and then re-inserted.
What You Can Do
While the LSP will do its part, you can also contribute to more cost-effective translations. Here are some tips you can immediately implement in your upcoming expansion strategies!
- Plan ahead! Translation and localization should already start when you are creating your website or your app. This involves a step called globalization and internationalization. Want to learn more? Read all about it in our blog Localization, Globalization And Internationalization: The What, The Why, And The How
- Keep communication open and be clear about your goals. While the LSP will reach out to you with updates and reports regularly, a clearly defined project scope and goal will make everything run that much more smoothly.
- Speaking of communication, where needed, provide the translation team with references, screenshots, style guides, notes, and so on, anything that will provide them much-needed context that will make their job easier and the timeframe smaller.
- Be strategic! We mentioned that some of the biggest brands out there have their website available in an average of 33 languages, but that doesnâ€™t mean you need to make that your goal right now. Find out which languages will work best for you and start with a couple, or even one. More languages mean bigger teams, and the more complex language pairs will even require more expensive linguists. So, make sure you make the right choice before committing to language translation services!
Measuring the ROI of your Language Translation Services comes down to measuring your conversions, traffic, new clients, your market shareâ€¦etc. But achieving that ROI you are looking for actually already starts before the translation process with your communication efforts and during the translation process with the LSPâ€™s technological expertise.At Laoret, we leverage the most optimized tools on the market and make sure that we only select the most experienced team to provide professional translation services.Contact us! We are available 24/7.