If your business is heavily web-based, then you surely already know the potential of the internet to reach an international audience and reach them quickly through online advertising. To cater to your international customers, you probably have your website translated into the main languages of the markets you are targeting. For many people, this part is relatively straightforward: you submit your copy to the translator, who will give you a quote based on the volume of text and any other special requirements you have, such as: B. One-time verification of translated text of web forms submitted they are online. But have you thought about how to handle the translation of your online promotional materials?
When done correctly, the translation of online advertising material differs from ordinary translations in a few key respects. First, a significant portion of the material to be translated is actually the keywords you bid on or buy, rather than the ad text itself. Effectively translating keywords is a little different than translating sections of text, for reasons we’ll explain below will see. When it comes to the ad text itself, a good ad translator has to proceed differently than a colleague who deals with ordinary texts.
The last point may seem the most obvious, but it’s worth addressing. The advertising scheme you use is generally subject to limitations such as: B. the maximum length of titles and other lines of the ad. The text in your ads was probably chosen to sound memorable rather than because a specific literal meaning was important. Therefore, to translate an online advertisement, it may be more effective to use an approximate translation that sounds memorable and stays within length restrictions. As an example of the kind of decisions the translator can make, there is a word in Spanish that can be used to translate “summer vacation” (“veraneo”) that is actually shorter than the common word for “holidays”. (“vacaciones”). ). If the translator knows that your business or campaign is specifically related to the summer holidays (and a good translator always takes the time to understand your business), they can use the shorter word, which is useful when translating an ad title with a 25 – Character limit.
The problems with translating advertising keywords may be less obvious. But first, think about the process you went through to choose your keywords. You’ve probably started by choosing a few phrases that characterize your business. You may then have expanded that list by considering synonyms, perhaps using a tool like Google Trends, to find the most likely synonyms a user would search for. They also considered which combinations of these synonyms were most likely to occur in English. For example, in British English the words “hire”, “rent” and “let” have similar meanings, but “hire” is often associated with vehicles or industrial machinery, “rent” with residential property and “let” with commercial property. Subconsciously, your choice of possible keywords was probably influenced by the grammar of English and the grammar of web searches. For example, you would probably choose “van rental” rather than “vans rental” or “van rentals”, both of which are typically ungrammatical in English. If you run a vacation business, you might choose “Paris getaway” instead of “Paris getaway” because you know people tend to omit short function words like “in” in web searches.
When it comes to translating these keywords, you may naively think that you can look up the translations of each individual word and perform a search and replace on the list of keywords. Unfortunately, this is usually not effective for a number of reasons. Where there are synonyms such as “hire”, “rent”, “let” in English, the foreign language will likely not have exactly the same number of synonyms with a direct association between them. (In Spanish, for example, the two verbs “alquilar” and “rentar” can apply to both vehicles and property.) So, in the foreign language, you may have to take into account word combinations that you didn’t take into account in English. and some combinations may not be practical.
Some of the grammatical restrictions that impacted your keyword choices in English may not apply to the foreign language. For example, the phrase “vans rental” in English is generally ungrammatical. But in French, Italian, and Spanish (and indeed many other languages) the phrase would be common and grammatically either singular or plural, leading to more keyword combinations to bid on. And in these and other Latin languages, compound nouns are usually formed by inserting the word for “of” between the content words (e.g. “de” in Spanish and French, “di” in Italian). However, web searches can optionally omit this word, so for example a Spaniard searching for “car rental” could search Spanish for (among others) either “alquiler DE coches” or just “alquiler coches”.
Most subtle, web search grammar actually differs from language to language. For example, some of my own research suggests that Spanish speakers are more likely to insert the word “de” between content words than French speakers, and that Spanish speakers are more likely to put words in the plural in their searches.
Finally, remember that some online advertising systems offer a keyword tool that suggests you alternatives to bidding when submitting a starting list. You should also talk to your translator to see if they can help you choose from the list of suggestions and advise you on their meaning, if any.