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German Translation Services

Whether you need to localize a website for Germany or translate museum didactics for German-speaking visitors, Eriksen can help. We combine expert human translators, leading-edge language technology, and airtight quality assurance measures to deliver German translations crafted with cultural sensitivity and linguistic expertise.

Professional German Translation Services

Eriksen offers English to German translation services to help organizations:

  • Translate marketing collateral and global communication materials to enhance visibility and support growth in new markets
  • Localize websites, audio, and apps by adapting digital content to the preferences of German speakers in various markets around the world
  • Translate e-learning materials to support German-speaking workforces
  • Establish a coherent German-language brand that will resonate with your intended audience

German Language Translation

The specificity of the German language makes translation accuracy especially important. A manufacturing powerhouse, Germany is home to robust technical industries such as automotive, chemical, electrical, and mechanical engineering.

When translating material that includes complex or technical subject matter for industries such as these, it is essential that all the details are communicated properly across languages. Misunderstandings can have significant implications.

To accurately translate complex, technical text, Eriksen uses translators who are not only skilled in the languages they work in, but also possess subject-matter expertise. Specialized topics are translated by linguists who demonstrate in-depth knowledge about the subject matter being translated—experts who know a particular field inside and out.

Subject-matter expertise especially pertains to:

  • Translation for industries subject to strict regulation
  • Documentation used to describe critical, complex, or specialized procedures
  • Documents that provide instructions for the proper usage of equipment or electronics
  • Materials that use terminology not understood by the public at large
  • Financial, legal, medical, or pharmaceutical materials
  • Science, history, or art museum exhibition didactics

Ensuring the Quality of German Translations

Even the most experienced, qualified linguists must be supported by the right processes and technology. Our translation process includes steps to double- and triple-check quality.

  • After the text is translated by the primary linguist, it is sent to a second, equally qualified linguist for editing.
  • The editor compares the translation to the source ensuring the text is error-free and conveys the style and intent of the original.
  • The original translator reviews any changes, incorporates revisions, and finalizes the translation.
  • Lastly, a final round of quality assurance is conducted to make sure the work meets all client specifications.

Having multiple eyes on the work provides checks and balances, ensuring that quality standards are maintained.

The German Language

German and English are both Germanic languages with many shared words and grammatical similarities. There are also many differences between the languages:

  • German has an added layer of complexity over English due to its gendered nouns. Unlike Spanish and other languages where the noun ending makes the gender clear, German does not have such clear indicators.
  • In German, all nouns are capitalized.
  • German has multiple cases for indefinite (a/an) and definite (the) articles, and endings for adjectives change depending on plurality, case, and gender.
  • German also has formal and informal options. When translating, it is important to understand the context and use the proper form.

Rather than create new words to describe new concepts, the German language is known for combining existing words. As a result, the language has long compound words. For example, Handschuh, combined the words for “hand” and “shoes,” to say gloves (handshoes). This linguistic tendency sometimes results in extreme, oft-cited compounds such as Bezirksschornsteinfegermeister (head district chimney sweep) or Donaudampfschifffahrtsgesellschaftskapitän (Danube steamship company captain).

English Into German Translation-Text Expansion

In translation, text expansion occurs when the number of characters in the target language outnumber those in the source language. Depending on the language, this can be caused by differences in sentence structure, grammar, or the way terminology is used across languages. The German language is even more specific than English and does not typically use more words to express a thought. However, the long length of German words can result in significant text expansion. Text translated from English into German can be up to 35% longer than the source text, potentially impacting layout, menu items, buttons, charts, etc.

This degree of text expansion makes it important to rely on professional typesetters to handle the placement of translated text in layouts. Multilingual typesetters will work in your layout program to ensure text is set in fonts that render properly, read legibly, and possess all the characters and accent marks needed for that language. In German, this means that fonts must have vowel/umlaut combinations ä, ö and ü, as well as ß (representing the voiceless S). Typesetters will ensure that rules are followed with regard to punctuation, italics, and capitalization, and appropriately placed line breaks. For example, German has both hard and soft hyphens, depending on the circumstance. A typesetter must understand how to place hyphens correctly, so as not to change the meaning of the content.

Eriksen’s German-language typesetters have in-depth understanding of the challenges related to the German language and will appropriately adjust text as needed to fit the space permitted. Our typesetting team will ensure your German text follows standard conventions, is optimized for readability, and preserves the integrity of the original design. After the typesetting step is complete, a final proofreading ensures that everything is correct and consistent across languages. Ultimately, a team of translation and typesetting experts make sure the final documents read well and look just as good as the originals.

Cost of German Translation Services

Per-word pricing allows language services providers to offer straightforward, upfront quotes for translation work based on the word count of the text. Because cost-of-living differentials from country to country impact the cost a translator charges for their work, the per-word rate varies by language. The rate for each language is also influenced by factors such as subject matter, volume, and turnaround. Use our request-a-quote form to obtain a free quote for your German translation project.

Get a Quote for Your German Translation Project

Eriksen has an extensive network of German linguists experienced in translating for German-speaking communities around the world. Please get in touch with a member of our client services team to discuss your German translation needs. Or visit our request-a-quote page, and we will provide you with a free estimate.

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