The need to communicate in other languages

One of the many challenges you will face in international markets is dealing with the different languages you will encounter across the world. Fortunately, English is the ‘lingua franca’ of the export world, but nevertheless, you are likely to come across potential customers that simply do not speak English and somehow you may need communicate with them. Alternatively, you may receive a communication from an overseas customer written in German or Spanish or Chinese. You could ignore it, but with a bit of effort you can have the communication translated and a reply set up in the target language and you can be assured that potential customer will be very impressed with your seriousness to do business. Of course, you wouldn’t take this effort just with every customer.

You would only do so with reputable firms, so the first thing you would do is check the website of the firm communicating with you – if it appears that they are a substantial concern, then perhaps it is worth taking the effort to translate the communication. If it is a small firm or they simply don’t have a website, then perhaps you should think twice.

This is a site that offers links to 201 language resources. Some of these are online translation facilities, while others simply contain a list of commonly used words. It remains a good resource, however.

WorldLingo Glossary
An excellent site for a glossary of terms that are used in the world of online translation.

Their services include free text, document, website and email translators, and they also offer professional services.

World Language statistical facts
A great source of interesting language facts and figures.

Subject dictionaries
Do you need to make use of specialised subject dictionaries? Try this list. It covers a range of subject areas.

WorldLingo e-mail translations
WorldLing offers a pay-for e-mail translation facility that allows your readers to translate your e-mail into any one of 12 different languages with a 75% accuracy; enough for them to get the gist of the e-mail. When they receive your e-mail they can select the language in which they would like to read the e-mail by clicking on the language option that accompanies the e-mail message. The e-mail is then automatically translated into their language of choice. The advantage of this system is that they receive the original e-mail written in English and if their English is good enough, they can read it without translating it. If, however, they do not understand English, they can choose to have the e-mail translated, but this remains their choice.

Language automation
This site provides a large number of dictionaries; some online, some just common words. In addition, there are also links to technical dictionaries. Quite a comprehensive listing, but it still requires quite a bit of browsing to get what you want.

ESL Desk
Another source of online dictionaries, translator programs, glossaries and more. Can’t help yourself elsewhere; give this site a whorl.

Translation Experts
This US-based company offers a range of products which include computer translation software, as well as PDA translation software. They also offer human translations if required.

This site offers a range of 100 links to online translators and machine translation programs. This is quite a good source of translation links.

Foreign Word offers a translation and language search engine. Looking for something to do with translations or languages, give this search engine a try.

Translating Services Portal
This portal provides lists of sites that provide translating services