Translation and Localization

Creating an online presence in English is an ideal place to start, if you really want to make the most of what the internet has to offer, then you should consider expanding your online presence to reach non English-speaking audiences, especially when it comes to e-commerce, educational, promotional, or other digital materials. At times, clients will also need to translate documents, certificates, personal data, and literary works.

You may have noticed also that localized websites have increased significantly, and they differ from translated websites. So why is there a major focus on localization as well as translation? This is because languages like English, Portuguese, Spanish, Arabic, French, Chinese and many more, are spoken in many diverse countries and regions, with each language having their own forms of expression and variants, date and time formats, currency symbols, decimal notation, and so on. Therefore, it is imperative to understand those regional “locales” and translate them accordingly.

Here are some examples of “bloopers” when translating text “word for word” without interpreting the “locale” or the idioms:


Papere (Ducks)

Out of site, out of mind

Invisible idiot

Name of car “Nova”

Car “does not go”

“It’s raining cats and dogs”

“Il pleut chats et chiens”

Made in Turkey

Fabriqué en Dinde”

Turkey (the bird) is “dinde”, whereas the country in French is “la Turquie”


Traditional Chinese


Translation is the process of changing an original (source) language of web content such as text, multimedia, ebooks, or apps into a different (target) language by simply substituting words within context from one language to another

Example of Translation

English: The product will be priced at $ 55.25 per square foot.

Italian:  Il prodotto sarà apprezzato a $ 55.25 al piede quadro.


Localization is a more specialized process of adapting your web content and applications for regional, or local consumption. It goes beyond translation to modifying the source language and other site elements to be understood by the customer’s linguistic and cultural language. Let’s look at the same example, but this time localized.

Example of Localization

English: The product will be priced at $ 55.25 per square foot.

Italian:  Il prezzo del prodotto sarà di 535.58 euro/m2.

Language Interpretation

Language Interpretation is the facilitating of oral communication, either simultaneously or consecutively, between users of different languages.  It is the most difficult form of translation because it requires a prodigious knowledge of both translation and localization, as well as the ability to translate the foreign sentences on the fly while respecting both contents and form.

An example of language interpretation from the French