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5 Best Practices for Japanese to English Translation

While every language presents unique translation challenges, certain languages require more care and human participation than others. Translating from Japanese to English (and English to Japanese) is one of those exceptional cases. In this article we’ve put together some of the best practices for Japanese to English translation in the hopes that you will both save time and money while developing a superior Japanese to English translation. Tone is a major challenge when translating from Japanese to English. In business, Japanese tends to be more formal, and if translated into English would likely sound stilted and miss the more casual, informal aspects of English. When pursuing the best practices for Japanese to English translation, most of your concerns will center on matching tone and content to your English-speaking audience. 1. Begin with sections of approved Japanese to English translation. One of the best practices for Japanese to English translation is to begin with a small segment of text which has already satisfied the requirements of voice, tone, and diction. This approved segment will inform not only your glossary, but also the translation memory software your vendor is using to manage your Japanese to English translation project. 2. Make your initial new translations small to start. Best practices for Japanese to English translation dictate that you engage in frequent feedback and correction. Rather than translate a large section of your project to start, begin with a segment you can supply all stakeholders for review, commentary, and re-translation. 3. Don’t be afraid to transcreate new English copy. Sometimes a literal translation of Japanese won’t make sense for English audiences. In this case, the best practices for Japanese to English translation dictate that you work with someone who can create new copy that matches the cultural expectations of your audience. Sometimes soft sell copy in Japanese wouldn’t make the right impression in English and would need to be made more assertive, for example. 4. Prepare yourself mentally for a lot of revision. This means budgeting more time and money for Japanese to English translation. You’ll need to work closely with native speakers to truly understand the subtle shades of meaning. Additionally, you’ll need to understand the impact moving from Japanese to English will have on any interface designs for your website or app. 5. Build a glossary and use translation memory. Best practices for Japanese to English translation mandate that you strive for consistency and that means not reinventing the wheel for phrases you’ve translated before. Translation memory can be a huge help to Japanese to English translation projects, quickly recalling phrase pairs and helping human translators move rapidly through large projects. With these five best practices for Japanese to English translation you should be better prepared to bring your Japanese products and services to English-speaking audiences. Naturally, working with an experienced Japanese to English translator can help ensure you get the most out of your translation budget as well!

5 Best Practices for Japanese to English Translation  

Acclaro is a localization and translation agency that helps the world’s leading brands succeed across cultures. We specialize in expertly ad...

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