Choosing a Translation Provider Online – Essential Questions to Ask

Choosing the right translation provider for your business’ translation needs can be a minefield, especially when you consider the plethora of options now available online.

However, taking time to choose the translation provider which will be the best fit for your business is worth the time and effort as it can speed up the overall translation process, ensure greater accuracy and give improved results.

Knowing the right questions to ask online translation providers is key to choosing the best provider.

The following questions should be at the top of your list:



1. Do you offer native-speaking linguists for the language and region I require?

The first step in any translation process is to decide upon your business’ specific language and translation requirements.

Once this has been done you should have a clear picture of your needs and can then set about finding a translation services provider which best fits.

Ideally, the provider you choose should offer native speaking linguists with experience in both the language and culture of the country or region you require so that you can be sure that you’ll get the best translation possible with cultural accuracy and linguistic nuances which are linked to the specific region you require.

For instance, if you are venturing into an Arabic market you should be aware that while there are 26 countries which list Arabic as an official language there are regional and country variants in language which will necessitate a language other than Arabic, such as, Farsi, Urdu, Pashto and Kurdish.



2. Do you offer translators with specific industry knowledge?

Finding the right translation provider to work with on your translation project isn’t just dependent upon language – it also should be based on the industry knowledge that the translation team can provide with their linguists.

This is especially vital for highly technical translations in fields such as, law, medicine, engineering and so on, which require a high level of technical knowledge to give the best translation accuracy.

Understanding technical industry terms is vital in creating the best translation.

Similarly, it is worth considering the translation providers specialisms with regard to design and format.

Some translation providers offer specialist design services which are helpful when considering website design or creative content for localized marketing.

Check that your chosen translation provider offers both industry and design specialists.



3. Can I check your credentials and client testimonials?

It is probable that every translation provider you research online will offer fantastic client testimonials and translator credentials – but this doesn’t mean they are reliable!

Ask to view examples of translation work completed for previous clients and, where possible, speak to someone who has used their translation services in order to gain a dependable referee. Word of mouth is often the best recommendation to rely on.

Check that they have undertaken work in your sector or field of speciality, and that examples of their work link to your requirements.

For example, if you are looking for web design check out websites they have translated and localized, or if you require an interpreter for virtual business meetings, speak to a previous client and find out if they were satisfied with the service received.



4. How do you calculate the cost of a translation project and what is covered in this price?

Every firm has a budget (which must be adhered to) for their translation and localization projects, so cost is always an important factor to consider when selecting a translation provider online.

However, vastly cheaper options should be questioned and regarded with caution as they may not include all the services linked to professional translation providers.

For instance, if you have received a cheap quote for your intended project does this still include factors such as, proofreading, editing, design and formatting?

If it doesn’t, these costs will need to be added as a quality translation should always include these elements.

It is also worth considering how the cost of your project is calculated.

Does the translation services provider charge per word? What is their rate? Can they offer editing, back translation, design, and so on, to give a complete price?

Consider your specific requirements for your translation project and decide how accuracy, time and quality will affect price structures and budgets.


Choosing the best translation provider for your project requires a little work and effort on your part but it can pay dividends in the long term.

Use the questions above to assess how well a translation provider will suit your requirements and if the quality of their work is as you would expect.

Consider what additional language or design services are available, what quality assurances they can offer and what support they include for businesses using their services.

If you would like further help selecting a professional translation provider for your project you can contact a member of the Creative Word team here or view client testimonials and our brochure here.

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