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Translation mistakes to avoid on your website

Our team has compiled a list of common translation mistakes and how you can avoid them.


As we explained earlier human and automated translations are not infallible, and it is important to ask yourself: "How can I translate my website as correctly as possible?"

Common translation mistakes

Our team has compiled a list of common translation mistakes and how you can avoid them. If you have more examples, we are always looking forward to hearing from you.

False Friends

Some words may sound similar in some languages, but mean completely different things in another language. Even when the languages may have a shared origin. This is a mistake that many non-native speakers make when translating a website.

Wikipedia has an excellent article about false friends and their etymological background.

Formality

Some languages support formal and informal sentences. The formal version is often used when addressing people that one doesn't know personally very closely. In German for example this is the "Sie" versus "Du" form.

Especially when translating English texts into other languages this is a common mistake by humans as well as machine translations.

Proper noun / Names

Proper nouns such as product names should regularly not be translated. This requires that the translator has knowledge of these special terms and understands the text in context.

Homonyms

There are words with several meanings in some languages. The nuances of how this word should be translated requires often a native-level understanding of both languages.

Idioms

Idioms have often very specific meanings and extra care needs to be given when translating these. Translating them word by word often results in a incorrect translation.

How to translate your website without mistakes

Dilingual comes with built-in tooling to combat common translation mistakes on your website, this enables you to quickly identify and fix translation mistakes on your website.

We also partner with industry-leading translation agencies that can completely take care of translation updates on your website.

If you need your website translated, regardless of whether it is based on WordPress, Webflow, or your own custom web stack: Dilingual is the right solution to translate it for free.

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