No matter the language, localization is all about conveying information in the most appropriate and effective way to your intended audience. Of all the business verticals we work with, the medical industry is one of the most challenging, as it requires an ability to express very specific knowledge in a way that is clear and understandable.
When we partnered with Breastcancer.org to help them reach out to Spanish-speakers worldwide with website translation, we were excited to support their mission. However, the challenges were formidable. Not only did they need to deal with the run-of-the-mill issues of getting a translated site up and running, but their existing English site was extremely large, budgets were limited, time was of the essence, and the language needed to be specially styled to sound as compassionate and comprehensive as the English does. Merely translating the text wouldn’t suffice. We needed to go above and beyond in order to provide patients and family members with accurate, easily understandable medical information.
Before proceeding with translation, Breastcancer.org prioritized their site content based on site analytics and identified content residing in the four major sections shown below. Of these, the Core Content was selected for translation and Acclaro reviewed the content to determine the best translation strategy. Doing this up front meant that localization budgets are maximized and the most appropriate information is identified. In addition, we needed to work quickly, and we did, processing 300,000 words in 6 weeks.
Once identified, website localization could begin. One of the major challenges from the linguistic point of view was making sure that our translations were culturally sensitive and medically accurate. The Spanish content needed to reflect the approachability and compassion of the English. Additionally, the content needed to be understood by Spanish speakers whose terminology could vary widely. We achieved this by avoiding regionalisms, use of metaphors and cultural references, and sticking to good general terminology. Thorough evaluation, strong linguists and a good style guide made it possible to adapt the content in the most relevant way possible. Sensitivity to the translation approach was of the utmost importance, in order to maintain a positive tone, and expert resources kept the language informal and consistently accessible.
Best practices for website localization, an experienced and responsive team, and an understanding of the users’ points of view ensured that Breastcancer.org was able to serve a brand new community, quickly and efficiently. As the Spanish site continues to attract new users, Acclaro is prepared to help expand the site to meet ever-changing needs.
Acclaro is proud to support Breastcancer.org’s mission. But don’t take it from us! Read what they say about us on our client testimonials page.