Have you been sent a MemoQ .mqxliff file to translate, but you work with Trados Studio instead? Don’t worry, we can help you work with the .mqxliff file in Trados.
Ever contemplated a multilingual marketing campaign that uses SMS messaging to contact your customers? Or simply wanted to practise a bit of French with your latest foreign speaking acquaintance? Then you may want to have a serious think about size. Because when it comes to texting, it really does matter.
As English speakers, we are lucky enough to be given a grand total of 160 characters per text message. These days, our mobile providers generally allow us to exceed these limits and will concatenate multiple messages into one long message, billing us for the equivalent number of messages. UK mobile networks use GSM encoding, which supports a character set consisting of the Latin alphabet, numbers, many other symbols, and some support for non-English accented characters. ‘Extended’ GSM character sets are also provided in some countries and offer additional characters, but this can vary depending on the mobile provider and handset. Often, using these characters will also subtract more than one character from your precious 160 character allowance. In fact, even using your favourite smiley or salsa dancing emoji will instantly convert your message to Unicode and reduce your character limit to 70. And if you send a special character to someone with an incompatible handset, which is tricky to know beforehand, it may simply appear as a ☐. (more…)
Job applications can be daunting in any profession; not least in the language service industry, with most agencies operating a rolling recruitment process for new talent across various languages and specialisms. What does it take to stand out in a crowded inbox? The Web-Translations Projects Team weigh in on what they look for when hiring new translators.
Writing source content with translation in mind is critical. In addition to the standard rules for well-written English, there are specific guidelines to follow when creating source content for translation.
Keep reading to find our Top 10 Guidelines for writing for translation.
The London-based author Kazuo Ishiguro writes with translation in mind. ‘I want my words to survive translation,’ he says. ‘I know when I write a book now I will have to go and spend three days being intensely interrogated by journalists in Denmark or wherever. That fact, I believe, informs the way I write – with those Danish journalists leaning over my shoulder.’
Ishiguro concedes that the process of globalisation, of appealing to and ensuring that one is understood by audiences around the world, may lead to a ‘greyness’ of language: ‘There are a lot of things I don’t write now. I stop myself writing certain things because I think, for instance, that it wouldn’t work once it’s translated out of English. You can think of a line that’s brilliant in English — with a pun or two, you know — but of course it becomes nonsense once translated into a different language, so I don’t use it.’
The Department for International Trade (DIT), known as UK Trade & Investment until it was rebranded last September, has 9 English regional DIT branches, as well as Scottish, Welsh and Northern Irish branches.
The DIT Yorkshire and the Humber will deliver a programme of £6.7 million of funding for its Enterprise for Growth programme.
Funding for the programme comes from the EU to strengthen the region’s businesses. Targeting both first time exporters as well as businesses already exporting, companies can access matched financial support to develop exports and create jobs.
To qualify for the funding, companies in the Yorkshire and the Humber region must work with the DIT, who will help them to develop their international trade plans. Funding provided will support a company’s export strategy, which may include translation of marketing collateral for international visits, website localisation to improve positioning in target markets, translation of product packaging, and more.
If you are interested in the programme, please get in touch and we can facilitate contact with your local International Trade Advisor, who will help you get started.
We’re extremely grateful to our network of linguists, whose extensive talents allow us to offer translation services across a wide range of industries. We’re privileged to work with many exceptional translators;
our MVT awards showcase just some of these. (more…)
I awoke this morning to find…
I woke up this morning and found…
When I woke up this morning, I found…
When I awoke this morning to find…
When writing original English copy, there are multiple options for conveying an idea. Similarly, there is almost certainly more than one way to translate a particular idea from another language into English. The same is of course true when translating from English into other languages, to varying degrees.
You can probably think of other ways to express the idea of waking up this morning and finding something. Imagine how many variations there are in a full sentence, a paragraph, or a page of text. (more…)
Ours is! You can easily check with Google’s Mobile Friendly Test.
Visit https://www.google.com/webmasters/tools/mobile-friendly/, pop in your URL, and Google will analyse your site. Having a mobile-friendly website is incredibly important, not only because so many people rely on their smartphones for internet access, but because Google uses mobile friendliness as a ranking signal. (more…)
The rise of social media giants like Twitter and Instagram have changed the food industry. With instant access to an audience voraciously consuming ‘little twist’ recipes and how-to videos, TV chefs are now better placed than ever before to sell their brand to the public and attract more fans. However, increased access to followers works both ways, and the risk of a misguided post going viral is one downside to this new form of exposure. This is something Jamie Oliver found out on Tuesday when he took on Spanish gastronomy and lost.
We would like to take the opportunity to wish all of our lovely translators a Happy International Translation Day!
The event began in 1991, when the International Federation of Translators set the 30th of September as the date for an annual celebration to recognise the translation profession. This particular day was chosen as it is the feast day of Saint Jerome, the translator of Biblical texts and patron saint of translators.
Join us and other members of the Leeds language community in celebrating the European Day of Languages on 26 September.
For a list of events happening in the Leeds area, visit celebrate.leeds-2023.co.uk
At Web-Translations, we are excited to be participating in some of the events:
Francesca has been interviewed on video as part of a career advice programme for sixth-form students, Jennifer will be presenting at the Language Showcase on the 26th, and Jasmine will be attending the Business Breakfast on the 27th.
Please stop by and say hello!
With the new-format Google ads running alongside standard text ads for nearly a month, we’ve noticed some quirks, understood a bit more, and most importantly – seen the benefits.
Google announced the change back in May, and launched the new Extended Text Ads (ETAs) at the end of July.
Advertisers have until 26 October to create old-style standard text ads (STAs); after this only ETAs can be created. Google hasn’t given an end-date for running STAs, but it’s in your best interests to make new ads. We recommend you start by running both sorts of ads simultaneously; if your ETAs don’t perform as well as your old ads, tweak them until you are comfortable removing the old ads.
The old-style character limit rule of 25/35/35 no longer applies. ETAs have 2 headlines and a description, and the fields will allow 30 characters in each headline + 80 characters in the description. However, the new format is based on the pixel width of a letter instead of the number of characters, so it is highly possible that your ad might be truncated, even if it is approved by Google. Google has recommended the combined number of characters in the headline should be kept to 33 to ensure the headlines are are not truncated, but this seems like a wasted opportunity if you might be able to use 60 characters… The ad preview is not entirely reliable, either. It seems the only way to know your ad displays 100% correctly is to actually see the ad running, which isn’t very helpful.
Overall, you can make longer ads, which give you more of an opportunity to convince someone to click on your ad.
The lack of a set character limit is making translating the ads more tricky; each ad needs to be checked in the editor/preview, and tweaked as necessary.
Longer Display URL
Previously the display URL as a field with 35 characters, but the new version combines the domain from the Final URL field with 2 fields of 15 characters each, separated by / characters, which will allow the display URL to take someone deeper into your site, but possibly not to a specific product, which you may have been able to do before.
Google says the new format is to help advertisers ‘succeed in this mobile-first world’. With an iPhone 6, I noticed that the entire first screen is taken up with sponsored ads, requiring me to scroll down to see the organic search results.
At Web-Translations, we have seen higher CTRs for our primary keywords with the new ETAs. Perhaps our competitors haven’t all started using the ETAs, but whatever the reason, the ads are performing better for us. The data below is based on English-language ads from 2016. ETA data is only from the month of August; we expect these figures will drop in the coming months as more companies move to ETAs.
|keyword||Standard Text Ad
|Extended Text Ad
|translation services uk||2.19%||3.23%|
|professional website translation||3.26%||5.36%|
Following Andrea Leadsom’s withdrawal from the leadership race, it was announced yesterday that Theresa May will take over from David Cameron as PM later this week. The news was soon trending on Twitter, with Brits across the country documenting their reactions.
Amidst the ranting, raving and jokes lay one subtle spelling error that caused a stir: Teresa May (without the ‘h’) actually refers to a UK Glamour Model, not the next Prime Minister. It is evident that Teresa uses Twitter as a marketing tool to good effect; as such, we hope that the added publicity was positive rather than negative. Nevertheless, it must have quite bemusing to suddenly find yourself involved in such a public discussion! We noticed this morning that Theresa (with an ‘h’) had now taken over as a trending topic; it seems that the general public did eventually check their spelling. (more…)
Well done on your fundraising efforts – we hope that the dog named ‘Gateley’ has a long and productive life as a companion.
Last Friday the nation woke up to the news that the public had voted by a slim majority to leave the European Union. The shock waves were felt across the world instantaneously: the pound dropped to its lowest level in 30 years, the stock markets were in chaos and the political and social repercussions of a resounding ‘no’ to the European project raised questions for other member state governments.
Watching the political situation unfold over the past ten days has not always made for pleasant reading, and – as is customary for such an uncertain time – it would seem that almost everybody has put their two cents in. As an office we have strong links to Europe both through our multilingual projects team and international freelancer and client networks. As such, we couldn’t help but wonder what the future might hold for us as a translation company, and for the exporters we translate for.
As a translation company, we are not altogether worried for now. We work with a wide range of European and non-European languages, and recognise that the need for language services prevails even whilst trade lines are re-drawn. The languages we work with the most are those which are most widely used in eBusiness; these trends do shift, but not over night. A remote workforce also makes most translation companies less susceptible to economic uncertainties at home than others. So, to exporters. What will the next few months be like? (more…)
To all of our European translators and clients – we are disappointed that the UK voted to leave the EU. We are proud to call ourselves European, and as a company we supported the “Stronger In Europe” campaign. You may have seen our name in The Times this week. The letter to the editor, including the list of signatories, is available on the Stronger In website.
“Our research shows that 70% of British business do not consider exporting” – UK Trade & Investment (UKTI)
Why not? It’s so easy to have your website translated, allowing you to trade internationally. Different currencies don’t pose a problem, either. In Olden Times (the 90s!), businesses were required to make a substantial investment in order to explore a new market. Now you can test the waters quickly and cheaply.
“Britishness” is in demand around the globe…export to profit from it. British exports amount to £24.9bn, according to the Sunday Times*, however these numbers are in decline based on the previous year. Theories as to why confidence in the export sector has dropped include uncertainly about the EU referendum, preventing companies from starting new export plans, and lack of government support, as well as an economic slowdown in China.
If your business needs support, the UKTI may be able to guide you about foreign legislation, which products you’re allowed to sell, and what you need to include on product labelling, etc. If they can’t help you, they know who will. If a Brexit is the concern, consider localising for a range of countries, including those outside the EU.
Localising your website is the key to exporting successfully, and unlocking the potential of foreign markets.
*29.05.16 / Business section page 9
In May, we exhibited for the first time at the Buy Yorkshire conference held at the Royal Armouries in Leeds. As a Yorkshire-based company, we are proud of what the region has to offer, and were eager to take part in an event focused on the idea that “we are stronger together”.
At Web-Translations, we have no sales team, so we rounded up everyone from our MD to our Vendor Manager to come and talk about what we do at Web-Translations. In hindsight, we realise that a Sales Executive would be a great asset to the team – so if you’re interested in working with us, please contact us! We are a friendly bunch and don’t bite.
Over 5,000 people came to the conference, whether it was to see what Nigel Farage had to say, or to stock up on sweets at the Clear Workplace stand (@Clear Workplace: thank you – they were delicious, especially the gummy snake!). We enjoyed chatting with visitors and exhibitors, and we learnt a good deal about what local businesses are planning for the rest of 2016.
With over 20 seminars and workshops, there was plenty to keep delegates busy, so we would like to thank everyone who took the time to speak with us. Thank you also to the Yorkshire Mafia – it was a brilliant event!
Multilingual website? Make sure you use hreflang tags to indicate to Google what language a page is in; proper usage of these tags can improve search engine positioning for your multilingual sites.
You can also mark content for a particular country.
The tags should only be used when the same content is available in more than one language. All of the languages available should be listed together as a complete set in the header. For example, on a French page you would not have only:
Make sure that the pages you are tying together have the same content – although in different languages of course. Confusing Google with mis-matched sets of pages will hurt rather than help.
We use the WPML WordPress plugin, which adds the tags automatically so as to avoid any mis-matching. It also allows manual locale selection.
For more info on how WPML handles the hreflang tag, and for general information on how to use Google’s Webmaster tools to check that everything is working correctly, please read WPML’s developer information article on hreflang tags.