5 tips to stay on budget with your translations

  1. Discuss your budget goals with your translation service provider
    • A key part of our business is forming partnerships with our clients. As a trusted advisor and service provider for our customers, we are always happy to discuss budget, timeline and any other details as you begin looking into a potential translation project. If a client of ours has a strict budget, we are always happy to chat beforehand and discuss, if the budget seems reasonable for the project, or what we can do to help them stay within their desired spending range. This could involve changing the project scope, timeline, languages or other key details to ensure we meet our clients’ goals. Reach out to us early on during your project planning phases, and we will be happy to provide estimates, and provide helpful advice to lowering the cost, turnaround, or any other special requirements you have. 
  2. Send larger volumes of text at one time
    • One of the most important factors on project pricing is the volume of text we are translating. The more text we are translating, the better per unit rates we can offer our clients. Whenever possible we tell our clients to combine files together into one project. Grouping as much text together as possible will provide you the cheapest possible per word rates. Smaller projects are charged more based on the time involved than the amount of content being translated, so this results in higher per unit costs. If you find yourself frequently sending small projects for translation, see if you can hold off and group several of the projects together. This helps streamline our processes, utilizes fewer resources and can therefore offer better prices. 
  3. Translation Memory (stick with your LSP)
    • Our translation memory system is crucial for offering discounted translations, improving accuracy and consistency across documentation, and speeding up turnaround times. However, this only works to its maximum potential when we have been working with a client for a significant amount of time. If you are frequently switching language service providers, or using multiple vendors, it is possible that you are increasing your spending and missing out on translation memory discounts. The longer we work with a client the larger our database of translations grows for their company. The larger that database grows, the more likely it is that we will have translated some similar content in the past. Some of our largest customers wind up with more than 50% off their translations, or even getting translations back for free, simply because most of the work is already completed through our TM. If you find a translation provider who does good work, is quick and professional, stick with them and you will see even greater benefit down the road.
  4. Sort through your text first, keep a record of previously translated content
    • If you frequently translate very similar content, another way stay on budget is to keep a record of and store anything you previously had translated. Some of our clients keep an excel sheet with content that has already been translated. They can then do a CTRL + F search in the sheet to find the content and its corresponding translations. This can save some serious time and money by not having to resend content you’ve already had translated. You can use this tactic to eliminate pages from a catalog or paragraphs on a brochure that no longer need to be processed or worked on by your LSP.
  5. Leave plenty of time for translations
    • The final big impact on translation cost is time. Our highly budget conscious clients know that translations take time, and so to avoid paying higher fees, they ensure that they have plenty of time allowed for our translation teams to do their work. Our team is always prepared to meet a tight deadline, work overnight, or through holidays, but this typically comes with added costs to our clients. If you know you have a project coming up in need of translation, and you already have a set deadline, reach out to us early on. Even if your content isn’t finalized or ready to be translated yet, giving our team a heads up can go a long way to ensuring we have our resources in place and can help keep the cost lower. Sending something with no heads up and needing same day or next day translation, will almost always require our team to add rush charges. 
Use these 5 tips as you plan around your translation needs, and you will be sure to keep your budget under control!

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