When clients get in touch with Cotranslating to contract a translation service, they expect a quality, ready-to-use translation, and they need it on time. To achieve this, Cotranslating members always follow a translation process or methodology for every project.
This post aims to explain this process or methodology.
1. Analyzing the text
Once we have the order, we analyze the characteristics of the text to determine the typology, the target audience, the aim or purpose and the format. After that, we choose the tools and strategies we should use.
Let’s think about the process of translating a web page. For example, a client based in the United Kingdom contacts Cotranslating to translate a web site from English into Spanish and Catalan. Specifically, it’s a fashion and clothing online shop site. As it is a web page, we must use SEO translation techniques (Search engine optimization) to make sure our version will have a good ranking on search engines.
2. Terminology research and parallel texts
Parallel texts are an essential documentation tool. These texts deal with the same topic or the same typology as the text we have to translate, which will give us more insight into the field. We usually take them from trusted resources, such as specialized magazines, university publications and benchmark bodies.
To translate the online fashion and clothing shop we will refer to similar online shops and sector articles.
Creating glossaries is a must to guarantee the consistency of the translation, especially in these 2 cases: when the workload is high and has to be divided between 2 or more translators; when the project has continuity and its contents have to be updated from time to time. The client might have terminology databases we must follow, if not, we start from scratch and create a glossary using terminology from specialized clothing or fashion glossaries or online databases.
Regarding the online shop, it’s very important that we check the terminology the featured brands use on their web page or blog.
After following steps 1 and 2, we translate the text using the glossaries and ensuring consistency throughout. CAT tools are a big help as they allow us to create and keep a translation memory tool, as well as check the terminology we‘ve translated previously. If we come across doubts about some parts of the text during this step, we research to try to solve such queries ourselves and, if that’s not possible, we make a list and send it to the client. We never deliver a translated text if we still have doubts about our translation.
4. Editing, revising and proofreading
Once the text has been translated and proofread, we edit or revise it. A different member of the team compares the source text (original) with the target text (translation) to guarantee its integrity and correction, as well as ensuring that the style, register, consistency and fluidity are suitable. This phase is crucial, because an editor/proofreader can analyze the translation objectively. Sometimes the translator is so immersed in the translation that they can overlook some errors so a second revision is essential. During this phase we also check for typography, orthography, grammar and punctuation errors and ensure consistency in the use of the terminology.
All these aspects, such as correcting the content, adapting the text to the target audience, consistency of terminology, etc., play a key role in conveying the company’s values and also in increasing user engagement in an online shop.
We have to ensure the text format is correct: font size, numeration and bullet points, spacing, margins, graphs, tables and colors. Clients expect to receive a text which is ready to be used or published so the translated text must be a final text in terms of linguistics and format.
For an online shop, once the texts are uploaded on the web platform, we request access to the demo to make a final spot check (we also check formatting).
We’ve come to the last step: sending the translation to the client in the right format and on the agreed date. This is also the right time to deal with doubts or questions about the translation. We always recommend that our clients read the translated text and encourage them to ask questions if they have queries or need clarifications from us.
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