How To Save Money With Your Next Translation Project: 3 Easy Tips

How To Save Money With Your Next Translation Project: 3 Easy Tips
April 15, 2022

Looking for ways to save money on translation? Here are three easy tips to save money on translations.

Translating, while essential, can sometimes be cost-prohibitive, and cutting translation costs without sacrificing quality can be challenging.

You may be tempted to seek out one of the many free online translation tools like Google Translate to save money, however, you should be very cautious. Machine translation can be useful in certain instances, like when you need to understand the basic gist of content written in other languages, but they are not capable of translating content that you publish publicly. Publishing low-quality translations is not helpful for anyone. Poorly translated material communicates the wrong message and could damage your brand, cause confusion, and even render serious legal or health consequences. Yet, we understand the need to secure fairly priced translations. In this post, we will briefly discuss how to save money on translations with three easy tips.

1. Provide an editable format file

One of the easiest ways to control translation costs is to provide your translation team with the original source file, also known as an editable format.

What is an editable format file?

  • Word
  • IDML
  • XML

Why is it important?

Editable files allow your translation team to analyze the file to account for original words as well as repetitions.

TIP: A PDF is essentially a photo — and while technology allows us to edit photos using photoshop or other programs, editing hundreds of pages of “photos” is quite time consuming and results in higher translation costs.

2. Work with a translation memory tool

Any reputable translation company will utilize a translation memory tool and a .tmx, or translation memory file, for clarity, consistency, and cost savings. Not to get too technical, but a TM tool, or translation memory tool, in its most basic format, is a content management tool. It is the most important tool in our toolbox and not working with a translation team that utilizes a TM  system would be like working with a carpenter with no hammer.

 3. Combine files

Combine all of the files that need to be translated into batches so that the translation team can analyze all of the content for potential repetitions to provide a better price. Just like buying in bulk saves money at the grocery store, buying translations in bulk helps control costs. Many translation providers also have a project minimum so sending a bunch of smaller files may result in minimum charges for each file whereas combining them would not require a minimal charge per file.

Extra tip! Finalize the copy before starting with the translation. Reducing the number of changes will help overall translation costs.