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Posted By P & L Blog

Filing cabinets


Everyone loves PDF files, right?  Although I have nothing against them, they are not the best way to send us the document you want translated.  Here's why.


Translations estimates are prepared based on the number of words in your original, or source, document. Some PDF files can be copied and pasted into Word to determine the number of words that will need to be translated.  The problem is that the original formatting is often lost (imagine your paragraphs being copied in a random order), and photo captions, or headlines may not appear at all.  Other PDF files do not allow any copying at all.


Send your file in the original format you used to create the layout.  That way no one will need to recreate your layout from scratch. The translation can be placed correctly within your layout, captions and all, saving you both time and money.




Photo by redjar. Licensed by Creative Commons.

Posted By P & L Blog

French store circa 1904

Some languages are "wordier" than others so translations into these languages will increase the number of words in your document.  If you need a brochure translated from English into French for the Canadian market, the translation may be 30% longer.


Will it fit into your layout?  If it won't, there are two quick solutions:

  1. Reduce the font size in the French version.
  2. Edit the original text and eliminate any unnecessary words or phrases.



Posted By P & L Blog

Kurt Vonnegut


"All I require of a translator is that he/she be a more gifted writer than I am, and in at least 2 languages, 1 of them mine."

Kurt Vonnegut




Photo by gregor y under license from Creative Commons.

Posted By P & L Blog

Spider Web



Someone asked me the other day if I thought her company's website should be translated into Spanish.  Here are some questions to ask yourself before jumping in.


1. What is the primary purpose of your website?  If you sell products online and ship all over the United States, then you can increase your sales with a translated website.  Many Latinos use Spanish when they search for products online.  There are over 13 million Hispanics in California alone!


2. Do you only sell to customers in your city? You should do a little research.  How big is the Hispanic population?  Is it large enough to boost your business?


3. Can your website design accomodate more text?  The Spanish translation of your text will be at least 20% longer than the English version.


4. Do your competitors have Spanish versions of their websites?  If the answer is yes, then you need to consider having your site translated.  Unless you can truthfully say that you don't need any more business.


If the answer is no, you can be the first to develop a relationship with Hispanic customers.  There's an expression in Spanish that says he who strikes first, strikes twice.  Be the first!


5. Can you afford it? Will the increase in your business pay for the translation?  You may discover that you can't afford not to.



Image by cybershotking.  Licensed by Creative Commons.




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