Why do prices vary so much on the translation market?

A low price is certainly a deciding factor when it comes to choosing a translator for your texts. If you've ever looked for a translation supplier before, then you most certainly might have noticed how competitive the translation industry is and how wide the price ranges are. Why are translation prices so different?

In this article, you’ll learn:

The high price to pay for a cheap translation

Imagine investing a lot of human capital, time, knowledge, and money into building a brand for years. And then you’re tempted by a low price offer to translate a cooperation agreement with a German company. You receive the contract back translated and everything seems fine at first glance. But then later you find out that the terminology used in the German translation isn’t right and that an article in the contract has a completely different meaning in the German version.

We know of many examples from e-commerce. A company decides to expand with its sophisticated product abroad. So they place the translation of their website high on their list of priorities, even higher than graphic design, user experience, or paid campaigns.

Later, these business owners are left scratching their heads over the conversion rate, which is a mere fraction of what it is on the domestic market. They slowly come to the conclusion that cheap translations just don’t connect well with foreign customers. The new brand will scare off potential customers, who will promptly abandon the site without placing an order all because of a bad translation.

Translations in the lower price range can cause major problems for you due to their inaccuracies, which in turn could result in you paying more in additional costs than what you originally saved.

What’s behind translations in the higher price range?

The price for a translation at a professional translation agency is reliant on several factors that are invisible to clients at first glance. A high-quality agency will be working behind the scenes around the clock to fine-tune their processes for ensuring the accuracy and quality of the results.

Translation prices that are too low increase the risk that one of these important factors go missing.

"The bitterness of poor quality remains long after the sweetness of low price is forgotten." Benjamin Franklin
Translata GIF - good, cheap, fast

Experienced translators with years of practise

At Translata, we invest in the best people. We carefully scout them out, select them, and properly vet them. They receive an adequate evaluation for their work and experience.

On our internal team, we have dedicated employees who are devoted only to translators. Their job is to find new employees and take care of them, and we provide them with the latest software and help work with them.

We understand that it’s our wonderful translators and interpreters that make us a top-tier agency, so we have the same relationship with them as our clients, which is based on the core values of respect and partnership.

An abundant capacity of collaborators from different parts of the world

Many of our translators have been living long-term in the countries their translations are intended for. They know the local customs and cultural differences and are capable of localising a translation so that it conveys the same messages in the target language.

An expanding database of more than 6,000 certified translators allows us to take on challenges such as translating an intensive medical text in under 24 hours.

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Investment in state-of-the-art translation technology

Translation software can significantly speed up a translator’s work:

We use the best tools in the industry and work with the latest software that’s currently available. We believe that investing in software licenses will bring long-term added value in terms of high quality, reduced delivery times, and cost savings.

Want to help save your client 50% on costs with the help of translation tools?
Read how we did just that.

Custom tools to help automate work and sync up with client repositories

We’re constantly striving to streamline translation management processes. We’ve developed a set of useful tools, such as our client portal for automating outsourcing and submission of translations, which have helped us improve our processes and made work and communication easier.

Handling translations via e-mail have become a thing of the past.

We can handle any editable format

Modern tools allow us to process texts in atypical files, which we can maintain even for the finished product according to the source text. We deal with tags, coding languages, and graphic files. You won’t have to worry about needlessly converting or copying text.

Flexibility of cooperation

Various translations products have passed through our software during our 15 years of operation. We are flexible in how we can set up cooperation with you as the client and can satisfy your needs and requirements without disrupting your well-established processes. Instead, we’ll adapt to these processes.

External localisation department

When employees on the client’s side lack enough time or experience to manage translation projects, this process can be unnecessarily lengthy. We can take over project management for you and assist with your translations as an outsourced localisation project department. The information flow will be smoother, we’ll be able to translate more efficiently, and we can save the client costs.

Read the case study on how we replaced the localisation department for the Dedoles e-shop.

Multiple services under one roof

You don’t have to split a translation project amongst different vendors. Our team has marketers, copywriters, proofreaders, and graphic designers who can make the final translation read and look exactly the same stylistically as the original source material. We can handle marketing materials that are meant to be printed (e.g. presentations, manuals, leaflets) and we can also embed the translation into the required visuals.

We help clients in the e-commerce sector optimise translated texts for search engines (SEO translations). Even the best translations don’t stand a chance if the customers can’t find your site. We’ll incorporate the right keywords for search engines so that international audiences will find their way to your product and brand.

How the pandemic disrupted the industry

The translation industry didn’t exactly come out of the pandemic completely unscathed either. The pandemic had a major impact on interpreters, who are professional linguists just like translators but unlike translators, they have a completely different skill set, different training, and different work experience. Months without income pushed them up against the wall and forced some of them to work on translation orders for less money. Although you might not notice the difference at first glance, these translations are not as good as those from a professional translator.

The added value: priceless

A higher price for a translation not only equates to a quality result and a cooperation that can relieve the client from having to micro-manage, but it also equates to time savings and lower planned costs.

And as an added bonus, you’ll feel special and enjoy a sense of reliability and a loyal partnership, which will only raise the standard of translation services higher and convince you that investment pays off.

It's a dream come true for me to work for a company where I trust the people and the services 100%. Peter Drucker was right about one thing: "The best way to predict the future is to create it," which is why it'll be my pleasure to brief you on the future direction of the translation sphere as well as the hidden pitfalls of marketing.