The Importance of Localization for Websites

Why Proper Localization of Your Website Matters for Your Business

Unfortunately, even in today’s globally connected society, many businesses don’t put much thought into proper website localization. With plenty of free translation apps and sites available, surely users who speak another language can just run your text through an online translator and get the idea, right? Maybe. They may also get mostly gibberish, depending on what they’re translating and what they’re using to do it. And even if they do get the idea, they’re not exactly getting personal service.

Good localization is a lot more than just giving a non-native speaker the basic idea of what you do. In this blog, the localization experts at Akorbi break down the essentials of website localization, and why it’s so important to do it well.

Cultural Context

It’s been mentioned in previous blog entries from Akorbi, but it cannot be overstated how important understanding cultural context is. Different words and phrases can have vastly different meanings from one country to another, and misusing an idiom can end up confusing or even offending potential clients.

A properly and professionally localized website isn’t just words, it’s the meaning behind them. Anyone can copy and paste the text content from their site into an online translation engine and paste the results, but you’re likely to get some odd phrasing — if not outright nonsense. To localize content, you need to know not just what your site’s content says, but how it says it.

Doing It Right Gives You More Authority

With effective localization, your website will read like it was created by a native speaker. The reason this matters is because it gives an impression of authority and knowledge to your clients, users or customers.

If the site is properly localized, your users will get the same clear details that you typed in your own first language, with the same confident, knowledgeable tone that lets them know they can trust you. This impression of authority is subtle, and more than just words — but having those words properly interpreted is a big contributing factor.

It’s Good For Your SEO

On a more technical level, properly localizing your site’s content is also good for your SEO. What is SEO? SEO stands for Search Engine Optimization. SEO is mainly focused on the text-based content of your site. The better written the site is, along with how effectively keywords are used and some technical know-how, the higher up your site will be in related online searches. Having your content translated professionally adds to the overall effectiveness, making your site more visible and accessible to more users.

You’re Much More Likely to Engage Your Audience

On a more simple note, good localization is more likely to engage the reader. It’s easy to tell when you’re reading something that’s been poorly translated. Seamless translation from one language to another, retaining the quality and authority of the content, will make your users —  whoever they are — much more comfortable about engaging with you.

Let Us Handle Your Localization

If you need your website or content localized, Akorbi is here to help. As a leading translation and interpretation service provider, we have a broad, detailed understanding of why translating and properly localizing content is vital. We can also help with multilingual staffing for call centers, and customize our services to fit your needs. Contact us about localization services today.

Interpretation Services: Technology Developments

New, Modern Developments in Interpretation Services Technology

Technology is a big part of the translation and interpretation services industry. At Akorbi, we take every opportunity to make the most of new developments in technology for interpretation services. This means that you get the benefit of the latest in translation technology, along with the professional service of Akorbi.

But, what kind of technology are we talking about? And how does it help to improve interpretation services? In this blog, the Akorbi interpreter team is looking at some of the biggest developments — past and future — of translation technology, and how they improve interpretation services.

Translators in the Palm of Our Hands

Perhaps the most obvious new tech that had served as a big step forward in interpretation services is mobile and smartphone technology. The vast majority of us now carry around a fairly powerful computer, usually with full internet access, right in our pockets.

Translation and interpretation apps are plenty and are often geared specifically towards speed, simplicity, and ease-of-use. While this is rarely a substitute for human interpretation, it does make things a lot easier to have a quick-and-easy way to translate on the go.

Better Machine Learning

When it comes to interpretation, rather than just direct translation, you’re asking a little more of your smartphone or whatever software on a laptop or tablet you may be using. Interpretation isn’t just about swapping out words. It’s also about tone, context, and presentation. While these are often hard for our digital counterparts to manage, the technology is always improving.

Speech recognition technology has come a long way — just ask anyone who has been a regular user of voice search functions on their phone. Giving simple commands has evolved into being able to ask specific questions, with some newer technology even being able to pick up on different inflections in speech. While this is still a long way off from full interpretation, it shows just how much potential interpretation technology has.

Digital Resources for New Interpreters

It’s not just apps and software that benefit from the improved reach of digital services. As the connectivity of our world becomes even broader, it makes the job of being an interpreter and providing translation much easier for us, too.

There are resources online for both new and experienced interpreters to find education, testing, qualifications, news, and job listings the world over. Remotely staffing live chat or phone-based translation services has also become significantly simpler in our always-online culture.

A Broad Reach for Interpretation Services

By the same token, new technology opens interpretation and translation services up to many more people across the world. It’s easier than ever to reach out to someone now, and a translation agency can communicate with clients and customers the world-over to offer their services instantaneously.

Find Out More About Our Interpretation Services

Are you looking for an interpreter? Or are you in need of professional transcription or localization services? Whatever your translation needs are, Akorbi can help. We’ve helped clients the world over communicate better with their clients, and each other, and we can bring out custom solutions to you. Contact Akorbi today.

Why Context Matters in Translation Services

Translation Services: The Importance of Understanding Context

Is providing translation services as simple as finding the equivalent word in another language? Well, if you wanted to provide the most basic translation services then, maybe. But, if you’re looking to provide accurate, user-focused translation services, then you’re going to need a more nuanced understanding. In most cases, it’s not just enough to understand the language at a basic level — you also need to understand context.

Context can make a big difference in the meaning of a statement, or even a single word. In this blog, the interpreter team at Akorbi is going to give you some insight into why understanding context in different languages can be incredibly important.

Cultural Differences

Possibly the most obvious reason why context is important is cultural differences. Words and phrases don’t always directly translate, and an inaccurate translation can cause problems. For example, take this Welsh phrase:

“Roedd y cwbl yn freuddwyd gwrach wrth ei hweyllys.”

We’ll forgive anyone unfamiliar with the Welsh language for not trying to read that out loud. Directly translated into English, it means: “It was all the dream of a witch according to her will.” Ever heard that one? No? You probably have heard the much shorter English language equivalent: “wishful thinking”. That phrase itself also doesn’t translate literally into Welsh from English. Phrases and words need to be modified to retain their core meaning.

Understanding cultural differences between languages means understanding that a lot of what you might say in your first language, without ever thinking about it, doesn’t translate into others. Cultural and historical context is important.

Tone and Presentation

Tone is important even in your first language. Just changing how you say “that’s fantastic!” can make it sound wonderfully encouraging, or bitterly sarcastic. Tone can also go beyond just how a statement sounds. Facial expressions, hand gestures, and body language all play a part.

They also vary wildly between cultures. In providing high-quality translation services, it’s important to be aware of things beyond just directly translating from one language to another — especially in person.

An Awareness of Taboos

Speaking of gestures, there are certain cultural taboos and off-limits phrases that mean very different things when they’re translated. For example, everyone loves cookies, right? Well, the word “cookie” as pronounced in English sounds an awful lot like “koki” in Hungarian. However, the two words mean two very different things.

We’ll let you do your own research on the Hungarian version, but the point is that it’s easy to accidentally come across potentially offensive phrases in other languages if you’re careless. Being a professional translator means being aware of potential cultural taboos, and knowing how to avoid them.

Ask Us About Professional Translation Services

Whether you need basic translation services or professional, in-depth interpreter help, get in touch with Akorbi. We offer customized solutions for companies, whether it’s translation, interpretation, transcription services or anything related. We’re here to help.

Akorbi Explores Global Call Center Regulations

Akorbi Explains The Importance of Call Center Regulations Around the World

At Akorbi, we know that having call centers placed in different countries comes with a unique set of challenges. It’s not just about making sure that your call center teams and your clients speak the same language. You also need to make sure that you’re complying with potentially different regulations from location to location.

Understanding the potential limitations of your call centers is more than important — it’s vital. You need to make sure that your agency or business, and your whole call center team, understand the rules, and sometimes even the culture of where your call center is based. In this blog, Akorbi explores the importance of knowing the call center regulations of different countries.

Requirements in the United States

In the US, call centers are primarily under the regulation of the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) and the Federal Trade Commission (FTC). The main purpose of the regulation and compliance rules that both the FCC and FTC apply to call centers is to protect consumers. Most of these regulations have developed from certain call centers using less-than-savory practices to manipulate or even outright scam people.

A few examples of how these regulations are applied include call agents having to identify themselves if they are calling customers or clients, offering certain safeguards for financial information, and giving clear options for opting-out of being called. Even if your call center only receives incoming calls unrelated to sales, it’s important to know these regulations.

Requirements in Europe

In European countries, the regulations on call centers are applied by the European Union (EU). The EU generally takes a stricter look at call centers, especially in how companies or agencies store and treat personal data of their clients or customers. For example, if a client or customer requests that the information an agency or call center holds about them is destroyed, the request must be honored.

In many cases, data is restricted to “single use”, which means the data requested of clients can only be used once for the specified purpose. If you’re outsourcing your call center services or operations to a European country, Akorbi strongly recommends familiarizing yourself with EU regulations.

What Else You Need to Know

These are just a couple of examples provided by the team at Akorbi. The important thing to remember here is that, while the purpose of many of these regulations is the same, the fine print and practice is often different. Whatever the purpose of your call center, whether it’s sales, customer service, translation services or anything else, it’s important to familiarize yourself with laws and regulations.

Even if they don’t directly apply to your particular call center locations, you don’t want to risk breaking laws you aren’t aware of. This is especially true when it comes to having call centers based in other countries.

Find More Guidance and Advice from Akorbi

Hopefully, this blog gives you a better understanding of how the rules for call centers can vary depending on where in the world your call center is based. When it comes to finding multilingual staffing solutions, Akorbi can help you to reach the next level in your company’s global relationships. Whatever your needs, we can tailor our services to suit them. Take a look at our full selection of translation and interpretation services, or contact a certified translator.  

Akorbi Lists Some of the Rarest Languages

Akorbi Lists the Rarest Languages Still Spoken Today

Do you speak a second language? Maybe even a third? Whether you’re bilingual or multilingual, or you just speak your native tongue, there are probably a lot of languages out there you’ve never heard of. As experienced members of the translation service industry, Akorbi has developed a unique understanding of the different languages spoken around the world.

We want to share some of that knowledge with you. The Akorbi blog is often a great resource for information, and this entry is no different. We’re going to look at some of the rarest languages that are still spoken from around the world.

Sarsi

Sarsi (also known as Sarcee), is a Native American language related to Navajo. Unlike Navajo, Sarsi was spoken by a tribe much further north in Calgary, Canada. What makes Sarsi interesting is it is one of the Native American languages that is entirely oral, with no evidence of a written version. There are currently only 170 people known to still speak Sarsi. The tribe that Sarsi originated from is known as the Tsuu T’ina.

Dumi

Even rarer than Sarsi is Dumi, with only eight known speakers in the world. Dumi belongs to the Kiranti family of languages native to Nepal. Unlike Sarsi, there is some written record of Dumi, despite its rarity. Even so, you’re not likely to be contacting Akorbi about needing a Dumi translator.

Pawnee

Pawnee is another Native American tribal language with only ten fluent speakers left. What makes Pawnee stand out from many languages is that each word in the language contains ten syllables.

The origins of the Pawnee are the very center of the Midwest of the United States, though the remaining descendants of the tribe now live primarily in northern Oklahoma. While there are few fluent speakers left, the Pawnee Nation has been making an effort to develop teaching materials to preserve the language and culture since 2007.

Chamicuro

Chamicuro is one of the traditional languages of Peru. It’s also thought to be one of the languages most in danger of extinction, with somewhere between 10 to 20 known speakers left and little effort towards preservation. However, there still remains a written record of the language, meaning there is a chance for it to survive, despite some controversy over whether it and Aguano (also from Peru) are the same language.

Kawishana

Another South American language, Kawishana (also spelled as Cawishana) is a traditional language from Brazil. Although it’s not known if any speakers of Kawishana are left, as of 2017 it is still not listed as officially extinct.

Contact Akorbi Today

These are just a few examples of the rarest languages, and the Akorbi blog will be back with more soon. While it might be unlikely that you’ll ever need help with these rare languages, interpretation and translation services are often a vital part of business operations.

Being able to speak the right language and really understand the content and the context can make all the difference in dealing with a global client base. Find out more about the full range of translation and interpretation services from Akorbi, or contact our translation agency today.

How Difficult Is Being an Interpreter?

Why Being an Interpreter Is More Complicated Than You Think

The Akorbi team has already covered some of the unique challenges of transcription and translation services, but what about actually being an interpreter? Isn’t being an interpreter the same as providing translation? Not quite. There are some subtle — and not-so-subtle — differences when it comes to acting as an interpreter. Akorbi has experience in providing services worldwide, and we like to use our blog to educate you about our services, how they work, and how they can help your business. Read on to find out more.

Education and Experience

Education is a big part of becoming an interpreter. For interpreters working for major organizations, such as the United Nations, the ability to speak multiple languages is obviously a must. You also need to demonstrate an ability to switch quickly and accurate between multiple languages without losing or misinterpreting information. While a degree isn’t necessarily required, as with any translation services, it’s generally preferred by most employers, along with voluntary certifications.

It’s Not Just About Words

Being an interpreter is more than just being able to speak another language. It means being able to properly understand and convey meaning in a conversation or exchange between two or more people. As mentioned above, this is something that has to be done quickly, and with multiple languages in some situations.

Relating and Communicating with Others

It’s also not enough to simply translate in a flat, monotone voice. Interpreting language is about meaning and intent, and your delivery needs to reflect what is being translated. Accuracy isn’t enough, you also need to engage with the person you’re interpreting to.

For someone providing interpretation services at a large event or conference, it’s important to remember how exhausting many of these events are for the guests. Failing to provide a lively, engaging translation risks them simply tuning out.

The Importance of Professionalism

In providing interpretation services, being professional is absolutely essential. Being able to understand and convey dialogue in a different language is one thing, but being able to do it calmly and professionally in a high-stress environment is entirely something else.

This professionalism extends beyond speaking languages and remaining collected in high-stress situations. It also involves preparation for the job. For example, an interpreter taking part in a conference needs to research the topics, people involved, the location, the languages and countries of origin of the guests and so on. The amount of work even before you start work is considerable and takes discipline to undertake properly.

Need an Interpreter?

If you’re in need of interpreter services, get in touch with Akorbi. Our team has extensive experience providing services all over the world, and we’ll tailor our service to suit your needs. Whether you need learning services, technical and multilingual staffing, remote video solutions, multilingual call centers or translation, we can help.     

What’s Involved in Transcription Services?

Transcription Services: What Does a Transcriptionist Do?

 

Providing transcription services might sound simple to someone who has never done it. You just type what you hear, right? Well, not quite. While that is part of the job, good quality transcription is much more than just taking down what’s dictated to you. Paying close attention and understanding what it is you’re transcribing takes a lot of skill and extensive experience.

As a leading provider of transcription services, the Akorbi team likes to keep you informed about how our services work. Here, we’re going to break down what a transcriptionist does, and why transcription services can be so intensive.

The Right Education, Qualifications and Experience

Firstly, providing good transcription services requires the right education, qualifications, and experience. Typically, a transcriptionist will take a course to gain a specific qualification before they begin their career in transcription services.

However, education isn’t always a requirement, and some employers will accept applicants based on experience, or offer training courses themselves. If a transcriptionist is going into a specialized field, such as interpretation, medical transcription, or legal transcription, then additional training is required.

Careful Listening

When it comes to the role of transcriptionist, it offers some unique challenges and requires unique skills to take them on. The first is being able to listen and pick up on specific details that others might miss. This is more than just being able to type quickly. It also involves understanding intonation, meaning, context and, in some cases, culturally specific language.

Accurate Recording

Being able to accurately record information goes beyond even careful listening. Providing transcription also means being able to effectively multitask, not to mention be able to use general software, along with transcription-specific software. On top of these skills, a transcriptionist must have a proper understanding of grammar and punctuation. When it comes to transcribing across a language barrier, this is an even bigger hurdle that requires exceptional skill.

Lots of Patience

A big factor in transcription that you might not hear about as often as typing, language proficiency and listening skills is patience. Being able to transcribe accurately takes a lot of patience, and the ability to focus for a long time. In many cases, a transcriptionist may need to listen to the same piece of dialogue over and over, working through technical issues or difficult-to-hear recordings to do their job. Transcription is generally a much higher-stress task than most people assume, and it takes a special ability to focus.

Get In Touch About Our Transcription Services

Looking for professional, detailed transcription services that you know you can rely on for accuracy? Contact Akorbi today. We provide worldwide transcription, translation and interpreter services, and can tailor our custom packages to suit your needs. Check back on our blog for more information and news, or take a look at the full range of translation and interpretation services we offer.

Translation Agency Explains Translator Training

A Translation Agency Explains How to Become a Translator

 

How does someone become a translator? It takes more than just an ear for different languages. A lot goes into becoming an effective translator, whether working as an individual or for a translation agency. As a leading interpretation and translation agency that serves clients worldwide, Akorbi can give you a little bit of insight into the work and dedication that goes into becoming a translator. If you’re looking for a translation agency to help you, take a look at our different translation services.

Getting Certified

The first big step in becoming a truly effective translator is getting the right certification. While in some cases this isn’t necessarily essential, it does make a significant difference. There are a number of organizations in the US that offer specific certifications for translators, whether looking to work for a translation agency or as an interpreter.

A great example is the American Translators Association, although there are plenty more out there. Getting certified is a great way to get a headstart if you’re just beginning your career as a translator or interpreter.

On top of getting actual certification, you can also find proficiency tests designed to demonstrate your skill as a translator. This a great way of demonstrating to a translation agency or other potential employers that you have the kind of skill level they’re looking for.

Getting Experience

Qualifications and certification, while a major boost, are rarely enough on their own. Getting real experience is what makes all the difference. Unfortunately, as with any industry, it can be challenging to get the kind of experience agencies and employers are looking for at first.

The tests and courses we mentioned above can offer an opportunity for you to get your foot in the door, but you’ll also need to think of how to gain some real experience. Internships are often a great first step, and if you’re a college or university student you’re likely to find opportunities on-campus.

Internships don’t just offer experience — they can also offer the opportunity to meet people and make contacts in the industry. Knowing the right people can open a lot more doors than qualifications, and even experience alone.

Getting Better

As with any other career, complacency is the quickest way to miss out on better opportunities. This is especially true with language skills. Not only is language and communication constantly evolving across cultures, but the less you use a learned skill, the rustier you’ll get over time. Regularly testing and challenging yourself is an essential part of being a good translator or interpreter.

Need a Professional Translation Agency?

If you need help with localization for a website, or you’re looking for transcription services from one language to another, contact Akorbi today. We offer these services and more and will work closely with you to find the best solution for your business. In the meantime, check back in on the Akorbi blog for more information and news about interpreter services.

A Translation Service Discusses How Culture Impacts Translation

Translation Service: How Cultural Differences Impact Translation

As the world of business becomes increasingly globalized, translation services are in high demand. To save time and money, some companies have turned to online translation software so they can compete in international markets. Unfortunately, translation software does not account for one of the most important aspects of translation: culture. The words on the page may be correct, but does your message make sense to your intended audience?

At Akorbi, we specialize in translation, localization, transcription, and more. Here, we discuss the vital role cultural knowledge plays in translation services.

Word Choice

Translation software may provide word-for-word translations, but it can’t guarantee that your message will make logical sense to your intended reader. Slang terms, idioms, and humor differ across the globe. Although a phrase you use may make perfect sense to your local audience, the word-for-word translation may not make an ounce of sense to someone in a different country.

For example, the French phrase “les carottes sont cuites” translates in English to “the carrots are cooked.” The expression essentially means “the situation cannot be changed,” but using the literal translation does not convey this meaning to an English-speaking audience. Instead, an English-speaking audience may prefer a phrase like “there’s no crying over spilled milk.” By hiring a translation service that pays close attention to word choice, you ensure your message is not lost because of cultural differences.

Local Customs

When you write a document to be read by a global audience, you may forget that not every country abides by the same customs. In your content, you may mention a habit that is common in your country but seems odd or rude to people elsewhere. By having knowledge of different cultures, you can change or remove instances of your local habits so your content resonates with various local cultures.

Images and Branding

When it comes to reaching a global audience, the look of your content is almost as important as the words themselves. Images, colors, and even alignment can signify different meanings in different cultures. To make you sure the look and feel of your brand translates across cultures, a good translation service should also provide consultations on branding and marketing.

Localization and Translation Services at Akorbi

Understanding cultural nuances is one of the most important aspects of a translation service. At Akbori, we work with translators who are native speakers of the selected language and recognized subject-matter-experts in your field. This ensures that your content translates across various markets, allowing you to reach your global business goals. To learn more about our services, contact Akorbi today!

Akorbi Ranked 12th Largest Language Service Provider in the Nation

Independent Global Market Research Firm Shows Akorbi’s Growth in US and Global Rankings

PLANO, TX – March 29, 2018 – Nimdzi Insights LLC, a global market research and international consulting company focusing on the language, translation and localization industries, has ranked Texas based Akorbi as the 12th largest language service provider (LSP) in the US.

The report titled, “Nimdzi 100” released earlier this month, also ranks Akorbi as the 34th largest LSP in the world, and the 4th largest organization globally to have achieved organic growth.

Akorbi’s President and Co-Founder Azam Mirza said “We are tremendously grateful to be recognized by Nimdzi Insights as a global leader in the LSP industry.” 

Akorbi attributes its rapid growth to listening to its customers needs, analyzing trends with the changing requirements of the market, and quickly adapting to meet those needs. This culture of versatility and market adaptability compliments the delivery of a full service offering of language solutions to meet those needs including video technology, staffing, multilingual call center solutions, translation, localization, interpreting and learning services to businesses across the globe.

Our success is a result of the hard work and dedication of our hundreds of team members and partners worldwide as well as the focus on delivering quality, reliable services tailored for each customer’s individual needs” said Mirza.

Akorbi bases its success on its continued investment in intellectual property such as its patent pending platform that provides enterprise solutions, processes and market analytics for any language.  It is also developing innovative language solutions for Telemedicine. Harmonizing innovation that is representative of the diverse and ever-changing market needs has allowed the company to stay one step ahead of the competition and continue growing at a rapid pace.

The Nimdzi report ranks the top LSPs by revenue worldwide. It conservatively estimates the LSP industry value at USD $50 billion in 2018 and projected to reach USD $66.5 billion by 2022.  Companies range in revenue from $615 million to $10.6 million.  The research found that the US is the most promising growth market with heavy concentration of large LSPs attributes to North America having many of the world’s top accounts.

Konstantin Dranch, chief researcher at Nimdzi stated “We used an investigative approach that included the assistance of in-country experts, and we have invested countless hours into intense research, data collection and analysis in order to present our exclusive findings”. 


About Akorbi

Akorbi is a U.S.-based company that provides enterprise solutions that empower companies to achieve success in the global economy. We help companies connect with employees, vendors and customers in over 170 languages 24×7, in any modality, from any location. Our customizable, enterprise solutions include: technical and multilingual staffing, learning services, multilingual contact centers, video remote solutions, translation/localization and in-person interpreting services. The company holds several certifications including ISO 9001:2008, ISO 13485:2003, EN 15038:2006 and M/WBE Certification.  For more information, visit www.akorbi.com or call 1.877.4.AKORBI.

About Nimdzi Insights LLC

Based in Seattle, Nimdzi Insights LLC is a full-service analyst and consulting firm focused on the language, translation and localization industries. For more information, visit: www.nimdzi.com.