Golden Rules For Setting Your Translation Rates

Golden Rules For Setting Your Translation Rates

Determining the price of its services can be difficult, even scary. However, the question arises as soon as a new translator launches into the profession and must be re-examined as he gains experience and develops his clientele. How do you strike a balance between asking for too much or not enough? By streamlining the process. Here are some tips to avoid giving a random number or blindly following your colleagues.

Work more to earn more

The hourly rate you target will help you assess the amount of work required to achieve your goal, i.e., how many words to translate per billable hour and, therefore, what rate to apply per translated word.

For this, you will need to get an idea of ​​your productivity, japanese translator hong kong that is, the speed at which you can produce a satisfactory translation (the unit of measure most often used to determine your productivity as a translator is the number of source words per hour). Mathematically, the higher your target hourly rate, the more you will have to increase your rate per word (thus targeting customers who are less price-conscious) or your productivity (working more or faster).This explains why many inexperienced translators have to rely on other sources of income (other part-time or full-time work, spouse or parents’ income, etc.) before earning enough money to live from their work english to traditional chinese translation service is reputed increasingly.

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Take into account the market but not only

A translator does not work in isolation from the world around him. Its customers, colleagues/competitors, also influence its prices. To know the “market prices” determined by the laws of supply and demand governing the relationship between translators and their clients, you can consult some studies published by professional associations in your country or visit translation forums such as Translator’s Café or Pros. Many agencies and translators also publish their prices on their websites.

Be careful, however, not to consider these prices as absolute standards. The prices indicated in the surveys carried out among translators are averages, and therefore hardly reflect the diversity of experiences, fields of specialization, and projects of the professionals who answered the questionnaires. As for the forums, they often attract the most unscrupulous customers in terms of price and quality and often testify more to the worst pricing practices than industry averages. Inform yourself, compare, take the pulse of the market, but stay in control of your pricing strategy.

A little more and a little less

Most translators give discounts to certain clients, most often for: A large volume of work. This type of reduction is justified if the source document is particularly large, thus improving the translator’s productivity over time (better knowledge of the subject and its terminology). On the other hand, beware of discounts negotiated in the hope of large volumes of future work: they will not necessarily materialize and will end up occupying the majority of the hours

Numerous repetitions in the text to be translated, allowing the use of CAT software. Again, be careful. This type of discount is only justified if your productivity is improved by the use of the software. If you have to spend long hours re-editing identical sentences with different meanings depending on the context, you could be losing money instead of earning it!

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