Lucy Xu

3 Ways Machine Translation is Driving Global Business

Today, technology is bringing the world together in more ways than could have been previously imagined. Outside of the day-to-day consumer technologies, innovations are making business easier to conduct across borders and markets, and bringing companies and their global consumer counterparts closer together than ever before.

There is one field in particular can take much of the credit for this: localization. Specifically speaking, the Machine Translation method of localizing content to reach international audiences to drive international revenue.

In this next post in our #MachineTranslation series exploring the power of bringing machine- and human-driven translation together, we take a closer look at how Machine Translation is bringing businesses and consumers closer together across the world.

MT Reduces Geographical Distance and Increases Revenue

A fundamental key to success in any endeavor in business — whether you are in sales and marketing or building a new product — is to know your audience. Successful global businesses know that there is truly no better way reach global audiences than to speak their language, literally. Localization is utilized by top-performing, fast-moving companies across the world to not only reach their global audiences, but show them that they are truly invested in understanding their language and culture to connect with them on a deeper level.

And the numbers back this up. Earlier this year, The Verge reported that eBay was able to boost their sales by more than 10% through the use of Machine Translation (MT). Why? Because studies showed that introducing Machine Translation between countries was “equivalent to reducing their distance from one another (a factor that has a big impact on trade volume) by 26 percent.

MT Helps Business Understand the Accessibility of Global Commerce

The common perception is that the main use case of Machine Translation is for large established corporations with large localization teams and budgets, which is both true and false. The truth is that larger corporations are indeed investing in Machine Translation to translate their content at scale, but they are actually doing so because it is not only more effective but also cheaper for their mass translation efforts. Because of this, Machine Translation is a great option for both large and small businesses.

Small businesses in particular can leverage Machine Translation with a limited set of resources and still get localization and translation at scale to reach their global audiences. In fact, a recent article from TechHQ exploring how MT is enabling small businesses to “function like multinationals,” cited the following specific case from a small business owner:  “With my business operating in more than 70 countries, I have some understanding of the value of global e-commerce. Our customers are small, independent and often family-run businesses. But businesses like these—and, in fact, most small businesses—cannot afford to hire human translators: that’s a luxury afforded only to their bigger rivals.”

MT Increases Accuracy Across All Industries

Last but not least, Machine Translation is not only increasing accuracy for the well-known global names that have invested in localization, but it is doing it across industries. As with any technology, continued refinement of the actual technology behind Machine Translation coupled with the continued experimentation of integrating human-in-the-loop practices has elevated the accuracy levels of Machine Translation to new heights. As Machine Translation becomes more widely adopted, expect to see more businesses across various verticals leveraging the method in creative ways to further expand their global presence.


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