Translation Services and the Thai Language
About Thailand and Thai language
Thailand is a country very well known for its beautiful and scenic beaches, extraordinary cuisine filled with a variety of spices, martial arts, and exceptional temples. It is no surprise that this beautiful country attracted 35.5 million tourists in 2017 and then went up to 39.9 million in 2019.
Things have changed for the tourism authorities, as well as travelers since the pandemic. However, tourists are only waiting for it to end so they can visit one of the most beautiful places the world has to offer. The word Thailand was earlier known as Siam – derived from a Sanskrit word, but later the name was changed to the Kingdom of Thailand in 1948.
Similarly, even the Thai language was earlier known as Siamese and is the only official language of Thailand. With over a population of 70 million people and 60 different languages in this country, Thai is the most spoken language across all the native and other speakers in the country.
Interesting Facts about the Thai Language
- Thai, the official language in Thailand, is spoken by approximately 25 million people living in Thailand.
- Thai words have been incorporated from many other languages including Sanskrit, Pali, Khmer, Austronesian, and very recently English too.
- If you are a foreigner, learning Thai could be a massive task because it is a context tonal language, which includes 5 different types of tones, 36 vowels, and 44 consonants. However, the grammar is comparatively easy, and you might enjoy practicing some of the Thai melodic phrases.
- The Thai language does not have past, present, and future tenses like in the English language. To convey such sentences and meaning, speakers have to always add words like yesterday, last week, or next week to convey the message.
It is not news that post-COVID, the majority of companies have gone digital in terms of using their content for attracting new customers and clients. Global companies have increased their budgets for digital marketing and advertisement campaigns which also includes translations as a key factor to help gain more traffic to their website. This is in addition to their other translation projects which include marketing collaterals, social media posts, and brochures, to name a few.
Especially for a website, one of the most important marketing tools for any company, translation of its content into different languages is an added advantage for successful business.
While there are many processes, tools, and steps involved in a successful website translation project, we always recommend following the best practices listed through the 16 steps below:
- Review & Analysis of Source Website Assets
- Best Practice Multilingual Workflow Based on CMS
- Project Kick-Off
- Subject Matter Training and Research
- Cultural Correctness Assessment
- Glossary & Style Guide Development
- SEO, Keyword Research & Localization
- Translation, Editing and Proofreading (Transcreation-Copywriting)
- Localization of all Graphics
- Localization of Documents
- Localization of Multimedia
- Basic Online QA & Testing
- SEO and Internet Marketing
- Launch Language Versions
- Final Delivery
- Final Edits and Archiving of Files
It is always recommended for any company to choose the localization process over translations for their website. Localization (L10N) involves translating and localizing the front end of your website into different languages ensuring all content (text and graphics) is translated in an accurate and culturally correct manner.
Benefits of Website Translations in Thai
- As per the stats, only 27% percent or a quarter of Thailand’s population speak English. Hence, translating your product, website, content, etc. will only increase traffic if you are planning to target the market.
- Customers are always buying products where they feel more welcomed and comfortable. Localizing your packages, offers, etc. by using Thai slang, tone of voice, style of writing, etc. will make customers more comfortable and confident in buying your product.
- You can perform Multilingual SEO and optimize your website content to match the language-specific keywords.
- You will always have a competitive advantage compared to companies that are not selling their products in the language of the targeted market.
- Customers/Clients are more likely to stay on sites which are in their native language rather than in other languages.
Thailand has always been a welcoming economy, especially for foreign companies who wish to establish their local presence in the market. With its diversified manufacturing sectors, adaptive, cost-efficient workforce, and seamless business policies for foreign businesses – global companies are increasingly investing in this growing market of business and tourism. Communicating with the people of Thailand in their native language will be essential to a successful and profitable business.