Top three business benefits of translation memory


If you’ve ever ordered translation, or are currently looking for language services, you’ve probably heard the phrase “translation memory” at some point in time. But how exactly does this popular tool work, and what does it mean for your localization efforts?

Partnering with a language service provider that utilizes translation memory (TM) can help you achieve the high quality you require while maintaining consistency, saving time and reducing project spend. Whether you’re looking into translation for the first time, or have a pre-existing TM database, here are three key business benefits to building out your translation memory.

1. Cost savings over time

The reason why so many companies take advantage of translation memory in the first place is the huge economical savings over time. Though seemingly contradictory, the phrase “the more you translate, the more you save” is a reality thanks to TM technology.

Here’s how it works. Your translation memory is essentially a database of all your past translations. When you send over new projects, the content is broken down into segments that are compared against previously translated jobs to determine matches in the system. Any material that has previously been translated is discounted depending on the type of match. Exact matches have a word-for-word match in the system, while fuzzy matches are anywhere from 75–99 percent similar, and are priced at a significantly lower per-word rate.

2. Higher quality and consistency

Clear communication is essential for business in any language. And with increasingly large volumes of content, this becomes all the more important. By storing and reusing previously approved translations, TM helps standardize vocabulary and style over time. Translation memory works to preserve your company’s unique style—keeping content consistent across multiple projects and languages.

3. Faster turnaround times

In addition to cost savings and message preservation, using TM can actually speed up the entire process. The more robust your repository becomes, the less redundant work linguists have to work on. With Gengo’s TM system, translators see suggested matches alongside the project they’re working on. Because they can reference past translations, the amount of time spent working on new material is greatly reduced. This means you’ll start to see your projects come back quicker and quicker.

It’s clear to see why companies place such a high importance on translation memory. It’s a powerful tool that can make all the difference in the quality, speed and cost of delivering professional translation. If you have ongoing need for fast, accurate and hassle-free translation, it’s something you shouldn’t go without.

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Alex Nguyen

The author

Alex Nguyen

​Alex crafts and coordinates content for Gengo’s marketing team. Based in San Francisco after a brief stint in Tokyo, she loves all things culture and design. When not at Gengo, she’s likely brushing up on her Japanese, letting loose at indie electronic shows or trying out new ice cream spots in the city.

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