Just about every businessman understands how beneficial it is for a company to offer their website in Chinese. A company may begin building B2B relations with Chinese companies and investors, they can start interacting with Chinese-speaking consumers, and the doors for global trading are swung open.
If your company has never had the experience of English to Chinese website translation before, then it might seem a little bit overwhelming at first. There are a lot of things that could easily fly over your head, especially if you are running a small business.
Luckily there are a lot of options to go by.
Option 1 – Online Translation Tools
If you’ve ever wanted quick and simple translation then your best bet is to use Google Translate and many other online translation widgets that automatically convert a page’s text into a different language. The job is done in mere seconds and for the most part it is pretty readable.
Unfortunately, literal translation of idioms, sayings, and locally-contextual phrases won’t do well with these widgets. The saying “hit two birds with one stone” could be translated into a Chinese phrase meaning “two birds kill one rock”, completely changing its meaning and how it was used.
These widgets are called machine translation tools and they offer the cheapest translation service. Some of them are for free. However, you do get what you pay for and in this case you get the worst possible translation done.
Option 2 – Freelance Translators
Hiring freelance translators is a more suitable option because then you’d have native Chinese speakers to do the job for you. They might use machine translation to get the bulk of the work done but afterwards they’ll spend hours upon hours to check every word, line, and image to make sure everything is right.
The average freelancer can translate up to around 2,500 words per day so if your website is text-heavy with a lot of pages you can expect the job to take quite some time. If you only have a few pages then a few weeks will be all you need.
Moreover, website translation is quite different from traditional one. It involves many jobs in website construction. Hence, a freelancer may not familiar with the web solution.
One thing you have to take note of is that you really have to set a contract with the freelancer so that neither party cheats the other. This will make sure they do the job instead of running off with your money and it makes sure that you pay them accordingly.
Option 3 – Website Translation Firms
There are professional agencies that translate websites from English to Chinese. They have several departments and tools to get every bit of your website translated as perfectly as possible. They also run several quality assurance checks to make sure nothing is improperly translated or missing.
They can charge a bit more than a freelancer and their additional services and tools will cost extra but it is an investment worth spending on.