Working from home or renting an office space off-site for your translation business?

Well, as you may have guessed, there is no absolute answer to that.
It always depends on the individual.

Some like to have an actual office space. Others do not mind working in the comforts of their homes.
Both have benefits and disadvantages.

When you work in an office off-site, you clearly separate work and your personal life. You probably stick to the usual office hours as well, bringing some routine into your life.
A problem might arise, however, if you have a deadline of a big project coming up, so that you might find yourself in the situation to spend more time at the office than at home.

On the other hand, when you work from home, you have the comfort of wearing whatever clothes suit you, and taking breaks whenever you want.
The problem might be that you feel that you always have to be available to work, and that you feel that you have less and less time to yourself as you do not clearly separate work and private life any longer.

No matter which working environment you prefer, do not forget that you love what you do – and that is translating.

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Communication is the secret of success

The moment you start working on a translation, make sure that you keep your client involved in the project.

Be transparent and inform your client about your progress.

Get back to them to clarify text passages you are not absolutely sure about. Ask them for special terminology databases or glossaries they usually use to keep the consistency in their published materials. And make sure to find out the correct target group.

By involving your client from the beginning on, they will feel as involved as you are, and they will be more likely to come back to you for another translation project.

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Proofreading or proofreading?

At first glance this question may sound a bit weird, but when you get a proofreading project offered, make sure to find out who did the translation in the first place – a human or a machine.

Unfortunately, it becomes more and more common that clients provide you with a machine translated text that ‘only’ needs a bit of proofreading – and they are dead serious about this translation.
Therefore, they often ask you to reduce your estimate as they already have this translation for you that only needs a bit of ‘freshening up’.

How do you respond?
Well, as in all cases, there is no black and white scenario here either.
Give it some thought, and ask yourself: Do I really want to tweak a machine translation into something beautiful? Or would I rather start from scratch and create a magnificent text on my own?

When finding your answer, make sure to carefully balance all the pros and cons, and remember: You are the expert!

Just stay true to yourself: Never undervalue your work!

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Happy Holidays and a prosperous New Year!

We at Value Translations wish our clients and friends all the best for the Holiday season and a happy New Year.
We appreciate your continued loyalty and business.

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Should you accept all translation projects that are offered to you?

Just imagine getting a phone call or an email from someone asking you to go work on a translation project for them. You will probably think, yes, of course, I would love to do that, right?
However, before making a decision, try to get as many information about the project as possible.

First of all, ask to see the source material before committing to anything. You never know what you will end up with.

Second, make sure that the source material lies in your field of expertise. Ask yourself if you really feel comfortable translating, for instance, legal or medical documents. If the answer is no, decline the job offer. In the end both you and your client are better off.

Third, once you have decided that you want to go for the project, be honest to your client on how much time you really need translating. Never make any unrealistic promises on how much work you can take on.

Fourth, always deliver on time or even before schedule. This is absolutely the professional way to do it. Your client will be delighted and may come back to you for future projects.

All in all, if you consider those very simple steps, you can establish a mutually rewarding working relationship with your clients.

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Expand your market

Once you have a well-established market, why not sell your product line in other countries, like Germany?

Especially now with the year coming to an end and the festive season about to start, it would be the perfect time to go through your products, do some research, and find out if people in your chosen target country would like to buy something that you have to offer.

If that is the case, you will need a good translation. But please, do not use a machine translation but find a good professional translator instead who will localize your product feed so that it is ready to use in another language.
That is the only way to ensure that your product descriptions will sound natural in your selected target language, and that customers will indeed buy your products.

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Do I really need a professionally translated website?

Or a professionally translated app, or a product feed for online stores and other e-commerce sites, or just something else you would like to offer? Just add anything that you would like to reach your future customers with, or maybe something that you would like to make people aware of, something that gets people to notice you, your services, your products. Whatever it is, as the list can indeed be endless, make sure to do this correctly!

Is the wise way to go for a professional translation? The only correct answer to that question is: Absolutely!

A professional translator listens to you carefully as they want to understand your explanations, visions and goals to ensure you that the finished translation will be a perfect fit for what you are looking for.

You can be assured that a professional translator will read your texts more carefully than anyone else. Therefore, make sure that you or a representative of yours are always available during the translation process, as a professional translator will always come back to you when they stumble across passages that need clarification. That way you will get exactly the result you had hoped for in the end.

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Why should I have my website translated?

Are you selling products or services? Well then, yes, you should definitely have your website content localized in various languages – if you want to reach future costumers in their countries that do not speak English or do not speak it well enough.

Nowadays search engines make it more than easy to find anything you want or need on the Internet, and most naturally people are searching in their own languages. Yet, when they are, for instance, interested in one of your products and, unfortunately, cannot read (and understand) its description or the checkout procedure, they will leave your website after a short glance instead of browsing it and maybe buying another of your products. Some may not even consider clicking on your website’s link when they see it is in a language they do not understand.
So you miss out on possibly generating more revenue.

What you need is a professionally translated website that reads as if it was written naturally.
So what are you waiting for?

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What can go wrong when assigning a translator for your translation project?

Now that you have found the perfect translator for your project, could there possibly be anything that could go wrong?!
Well, that depends on how you have selected your translator and how well you have communicated with each other.

Things that can generally go wrong are: ridiculous deadlines, low compensation, hardly no communication between the client and the translator, an overconfident translator asking no questions (or a translator who does not care), poorly used translation tools, poorly edited machine translations, no proofreading of the target text – to name only some of them…

So what can you do?
Instead of telling the translator that the text is easy, let them know what field the required translation lies in – or even better, provide them with the source text. A professional translator only accepts texts that lie in their fields of expertise to guarantee you the best possible results.
Moreover, tell them what audience you would like to reach as this is an important point when finding the correct style and tone of the translation.
Listen to your translator when finding a deadline as they know exactly how much time they will need to give you a quality translation.

All in all, make sure that you work together with your translator. Be available when your translators asks questions. Be prepared to give them more details on your work.
Both the translator and you are experts in your professions – use those strengths to get the best translation that reads as if it was written naturally.

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How can you get the best translation?

Always tell your translator which target group you are aiming at, so that they can transform your source text into a target text that is customized for that particular audience.

Give your translator enough time to work on your translation. Trust your translator as they know best how many words they can handle within one day without compromising the quality of your requested translation.

You are the expert. Therefore, be available for further queries, and be grateful when your translator comes back to you with certain questions. Do not get this wrong: this does not mean that the translator does not know their craft. The opposite applies here: it clearly shows you that your translator cares, because they want to give you the best translation that is in your interest.

Invest in your translation. When a professional translator commits to your translation project, make sure you pay them accordingly, and you will get a beautiful and functional translation.

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