Customer Review Translation for a Multilingual Market

Last Updated On: June 19, 2017

inTranslation Tips, Translation Trends

Multilingual Market

Multilingual MarketMany businesses and government organizations use customer reviews and surveys to give them an idea of where they are headed. This sets up an interesting challenge for many of those producing the reviews and surveys because so many of their customers or users are either living overseas or live in the same country but do not speak the same language. It means that any customer reviews and surveys really need to be translated to take into account a multilingual environment.

This should not be too much of a surprise for those businesses that have already reoriented their market to a more multilingual and international one. To be able to have reached that point, the business must already have been using website translation services to translate their key web content so that it appeals to potential and current customers.


Customer reviews and surveys these days are almost always online anyway, but they are not necessarily translated into the different languages spoken by the customer base.

Some surveys are still done over the phone or face to face, but that’s an unlikely method for assessing international customers’ views. It will work close to home, but unless interpreters are used in the surveys, then the statistics are going to be weighted in favour of the people who speak the language used by the surveyors.

One of the problems with translated surveys and reviews is that the way a question is phrased in the main language isn’t always the same in another language. Generally, market researchers spend a good deal of time trying to carefully phrase their questions so they get the sorts of responses they want, but these research questions need to be professionally translated so that maximum value is obtained from the questions. There are considerable cultural differences between social groups. Some societies are more comfortable with a direct and personal style of questioning and others are not. Just translating a question without considering the social and cultural implications is not going to be very helpful.

It stands to reason that no survey or questionnaire which is intended to be used with another language group should be translated using a cheap but inaccurate computer translation programme, like Google Translate. By using a professional translation agency in Australia or wherever your business is based, you are going to get a better market research tool.

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