Translation a key way of making your website more user-friendly

Website usability describes the ease with which the user can find the information they seek on a given webpage. Improving usability, and in turn the user experience, is essential if a website is to grow. If we can ensure that the user finds what they want quickly and that the information is presented in a way that is clear and easy to understand, then it’s likely that they will enjoy surfing our pages and as a result, will lead to more conversions.

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When it comes to optimising a website we have to think about how easy it is to crawl, for both search engines and users alike. I would always recommend optimising the website for users before search engines, because if users can find all the information they need, then we are also ensuring that the website is optimised for search engines.

This may seem obvious in this day and age; however there are still websites out there that don’t seem to be paying attention when it comes to optimising information, with bad translations, confusing information structures etc.

Today we’re going to talk a little about website translations and how they improve usability. In order to do this, I’m going to use the following everyday example:

You go into a supermarket you’ve never been to before and, after having a look around all the isles, you find the product you need. You then go to read the label to see if it’s suitable. This is when you discover that the label is in another language that you don’t understand. The most logical outcome is that you don’t purchase the item because you don’t have all the information you need. Further still, if the label is in another language but in one that you understand, the normal reaction is to doubt the professionalism of the supermarket before debating whether to buy it from there or not.

There is a third option: the label is in your language but is poorly translated. It still gives you the information that allows you to make the purchase but you’re not entirely satisfied. You most likely won’t come back to shop at this supermarket again and you’ll advise your family and friends not to do so either.


A well-translated webpage helps the user to feel comfortable when browsing its content and reduces the likelihood of problems arising when it comes to converting. It also helps give the brand a feeling of professionalism.

We don’t want users to feel dissatisfied after their purchase, we don’t to lose users because they can’t find all the information they want, nor do we want a bad online reputation. In order to avoid all of this on your webpage, I propose undertaking the following steps:

Go through the website and make a note of all the content that is not translated or not translated correctly. Take special care with URLs, product descriptions etc.
Look over your error page. Many companies don’t have it optimised for users, resulting in predefined messages being displayed in other languages.
Predefined templates. Keep in mind that if you have used a template on your page then it’s highly likely that some words, text or phrases have not been translated. It’s still very common to see “read more” and “next page” buttons on websites.
If your site has versions in other languages, get native speakers to check over them. This is a really important step, so you shouldn’t be put off paying for a professional to carry it out.
When you have a consistent webpage in terms of its language, and when all the various languages have been correctly separated, send your website to friends and acquaintances for a final test run. Tell them to check over it, have a browse and to inform you if there are any errors that you may have overlooked.
When it comes to making the next changes to your website, don’t forget about the importance of good translation in the eyes of your users and in the final conversion.
Carry out these little steps and I assure you that your website will be language barrier-free and that your users, regardless of whatever language they chose to view your site in, will be more than satisfied.

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