Online searches for English translation are still the most common according to Google with a strong demand for translations both from English and into English from a variety of different languages. The strength of the English speaking consumer markets around the world are such that any international business has to address their marketing literature, both online and offline to an English speaking consumer. Of course some do this better than others, and a quick tour of some major online marketplaces such as Alibaba quickly reveals those who have failed to translate their message effectively.
The first question when seeking English translation from another language should be which version of English? In addition to being the most commonly spoken language in the United Kingdom, the United States, Canada, Australia, Ireland, and New Zealand English is widely spoken in some areas of the Caribbean, Africa, and South Asia. English is either the official language or one of a number of official languages in almost 60 sovereign states. Despite this English is still only the third most common native language in the world, after Mandarin and Spanish. There are significant differences between say an American English translation and the English spoken in the United Kingdom.
Its is hardly surprising given our location in the rural heart of the United Kingdom that the vast majority of translation projects we undertake are to or from English, and although many of our translators very often have a third or even fourth language in their repertoire, we have a strict rule that our translators can only translate into their mother tongue.
Given the range of cultures in which English is spoken around the world we are increasingly talking to our clients about culturally specific translation known as “transadaptation” or “transliteration” which in addition to providing a translation to or from English for example, also takes into account cultural differences between the sources language and the destination language and makes subtle changes to produce an end product more sensitive to cultural nuances.