McAnerin International specializes in international SEO – if you use the web to connect to people and companies in another country, we are the ones you want to talk to!
Search engine optimization (SEO) refers to adjustments made to your website and related links in order to rank well for natural (organic) listings. If you are looking for help with the use of paid services such as Pay-Per-Click (PPC), banner advertising, and other instant response web marketing, check out our international SEM page.
SEO Translation and Localization
There is a lot more to translating a website than simply translating from one language to another – you need to translate from one culture to another (localization). Think about the differences between the English spoken in the UK and in the USA for example:
|Toss the rubbish in the dustbin||Throw the garbage in the trash can|
Huiping Iler, president, wintranslation, provider of web site translation and multilingual SEO localization services
There are differences just as pronounced, and sometimes more so, in French, Chinese, Spanish and almost every other major language. In addition, you have cultural assumptions and knowledge, such as references to sports, pop culture, politics, and many other country specific references.
Further, there are issues like the fact that no one likes to be referred to as “foreign”, many countries are very sensitive to political signals like flags, and that for a website owner trying to sell things to other countries, it’s natural to talk about “exporting”, but the people looking for your websites are probably interested in “importing”!
All of these things not only affect the keywords people use to search for your website, but also how they view your website once they get there. On the web, you have a very short period of time (about 3 seconds for the home page, 8 for inner pages) to make a good first impression. You don’t want to alienate your potential visitors with a shoddy translation.
Multilingual Keyword Research
One sub-topic of SEO translation is keyword research. You can’t just translate one word into another using a dictionary. For example, “search engine optimization” in French is “Référencement”, not the literal translation of “optimisation de Search Engine”, which would make you look foolish, and no one is looking for in searches anyway. In Chinese, what an English speaker would call “cold water” to drink, would be called “open water”.
Therefore, you need to make sure that your keyword research is provided by a local speaker of the local language. McAnerin International uses a 2-step process for translation of important documents:
Step 1: Technical Translation
This is a translation from English into the target language by native language speakers here in North America. Why? Because they need you know that you are trying to say, and need to understand this culture. A Chinese translator living in Beijing is not very well suited to understanding exactly what an American might be trying to say. We use translators based in North America for this step, to make sure that what you are trying to say is actually what gets translated. If you don’t do this, “metal fatigue” might end up being translated as “tired metal” or something similar.
This results in a translation that is satisfactory for most technical documents – specifications, lists and so forth. But it’s rarely poetry. This is fine if the original page is not poetry either, but what about your carefully crafted marketing pages and call to action paragraphs? This is the point where most translations stop, and thus fail.
Step 2: Marketing Translation
Although the majority of pages in the average website can be translated to a technical level with no problem (which is why our competitors get away with not going to the next step), this is incomplete. There will be some pages and paragraphs in your site that are intended to grab the readers attention, speak to their wants and dreams, and turn them into paying customers. Technical translation does not speak to the soul of the reader.
This is why McAnerin International goes the extra distance and, for these type of pages, has a local copywriter (not translator… copywriter) take the technical translation and work magic on it. They take the dry, fact oriented copy and, using their deep understanding of their local language and culture, render something that speaks to the soul of the local reader. Usually, writers of this calibre do not even speak a second language – they are just very, very good at writing in their own language.
International SEO Translation Services and Prices
Technical Translations: $300 per page (assuming approximately a 500 word count).
Marketing/SEO translation: $500 per page (includes original Technical Translation).
Keyword research: $1500 (discounts for large quantities).
This is an average price, to give you a feel for the cost that a manager/budgeter can understand. The price can vary a little depending on the language and exact number of words. The differences would be negligible unless you were looking at a very large website. Call us for a quote and we can give you an exact amount.
Localization – If you are interested in just localization (i.e. US English to UK English, Bejingese to Shanghaiese Chinese) then contact us for details – we can help you!
Bulk rates – the page prices are based on an average per word basis. Many websites with short pages can save money by switching to a per word count, which is how our translators normally work. Please note that in this case the per word cost varies – German is more expensive than Chinese, for example. Contact us for details.