Translating your B2B webshop? 4 tips for choosing a suitable translation agency

Translating your B2B webshop? 4 tips for choosing a suitable translation agency


In recent years e-commerce has not only boomed in the B2C market, but also in the B2B sector. More and more companies are launching a webshop aimed specifically at business customers. If this runs smoothly, the desire often arises to serve foreign customers online as well. A translated site is then crucial. But how do you choose a translation agency you can rely on? In this blog post, we give you 4 tips.

In our whitepapers More success with your international webshop and 10 do's & don'ts for a successful localization of your webshop we elaborate on how to approach a webshop translation, including the choice of a translation partner. However these whitepapers do not focus specifically on B2B e-commerce. Therefore, below you will find 4 tips that do focus on this.

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1. Specialization

Choose a translation agency that has thorough knowledge of your field. B2B webshops typically sell specialized items for use in a particular industry. This requires the translation agency (and the translators the agency uses) to have in-depth knowledge of the subject matter. It's usually not a good idea to go with a translation agency that does "a little bit of everything" and doesn't specialize in anything. Do you sell parts for medical equipment? Then choose an agency with experience in 'life sciences'. Do you have a wholesale automotive parts business? Then you'll be fine with a technical translation agency. Prospects and customers will notice immediately if your webshop translation contains incorrect terms or if the language used does not match the conventions of the industry. Texts should convey the impression that they have been translated by someone who knows the business; this inspires confidence. Translations that are obviously not made by a specialist seriously undermine that trust, with all the consequences that entails.

2. Terminology management

Choose a translation agency experienced in terminology management. Above, we already mentioned the word "terms. That word plays an important role in B2B e-commerce. In fact, it is essential that the terminology in your translations is both correct and consistent. If you call a certain concept 'term A' on one page and 'term B' on another, this can lead to confusion among customers, even if both terms are correct. Inconsistent terminology use quickly lurks when multiple translators are working on your web texts. To avoid such problems, it is a good idea to compile a terminology list in advance that contains all the relevant terms used on your site, plus the corresponding translations. Professional translation agencies will be happy to set up such a list for you and then take care of the maintenance (adding new terms, etc.).

3. Transparency

Choose a translation agency that maintains tight workflows. Even more than in the B2C world, aspects such as liability for incorrect information and traceability of work (in this case: who translated what and when?) are very important in B2B e-commerce. Thus, always engage a translation agency that works in a structured way and, in case of problems, can verify exactly what happened. Ideally, the intended agency should be certified to the ISO standard for translation services (17100) and possibly also to the ISO standard for post-editing of automatically translated texts (18587). The procedural guarantees provided by these standards provide a high degree of assurance regarding quality and transparency.

4. Versatility

Choose a translation agency that offers more than just translations. As you can read in the whitepapers mentioned above, translation is only one step in setting up a multilingual webshop. There is much more to it, even after your translated site has gone live: from SEO research to optimization, from content renewal to link building. Some translation agencies can provide you with such additional services, which is useful if you want to place as many activities as possible with the same partner. Very typical of B2B e-commerce is that customers very often will contact you with questions or special requests. They prefer to do this in their own language. If you don't have 24/7 customer agents in all desired languages, but want to be able to speak to customers in as many languages as possible, ask your translation agency about options for multilingual (semi-)automatic chat or e-mail integrated with your CRM. This will give your customer support a truly international character without making agent costs unmanageable.

Scriptware Translations is the B2B specialist

An expert translation partner is a prerequisite for a successful international B2B webshop. Can't see the forest for the trees? Then contact us. We will gladly sit down with you to discuss your requirements and wishes. We look forward to getting to know you!

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