Sometimes it may happen that the translation of a text does not require great effort and allows the translator to implement a literal translation, respecting the syntactic and grammatical structures from one language to another. But these are rare cases.

Literal translations are often insufficient because they do not take into account the context and nuances of meaning. Often there is no single “best” translation, so two translators can legitimately disagree on word choice.


Choose the right techniques for the best translation

Most of the time, a translation can take on many meanings, to the point of leading two professionals to differ in their choice of words. How to behave in these cases?

The best approach is to pay attention to the context in which a word or phrase is placed. By doing so, you will be able to frame and bring out the central idea of the passage in question, and you will have a guideline to follow to make informed choices.


Indirect translation techniques

The right technique will vary case by case, taking into account the type of text, the target reader and the final purpose of the translation.

Indirect or oblique translation techniques are used when the two languages and cultures are more distant. These techniques modify structural and conceptual elements in order to preserve the meaning and nuances of the text.

Let’s see together some of the methods used by professionals to translate correctly in uncertain linguistic scenarios.



Transposition involves a shift from one grammatical category to another, while preserving meaning. This translation technique is often necessary between languages with different grammatical structures.



This involves a change of perspective, the adaptation of what is written in order to express the same idea and preserve its meaning. This translates the text in a way that conforms to the natural patterns of the target language.



Similar to modulation, this allows you to preserve the meaning of an expression, name, or proverb by finding an equivalent in the target language.



Also known as cultural substitution, cultural elements of the source language are replaced with an equivalent cultural element of the target language. This makes the text more familiar and easier to understand, especially with units of measurement.



This technique compensates for the inability to translate a nuance or phrase in one specific place by expressing the information elsewhere in the document.



When using reduction, the translator chooses to remove all words forming the original text that are considered redundant in the target language.



The opposite of reduction, expansion occurs when words are added to preserve meaning. This may be due to differences in sentence structure, grammar or terminology.


We know the difference


The job of a translation agency is to choose the right person for a given project and ensure that the translation process is correct.

In every job assigned to us, we aim for relevance and coherence of content and meaning. Our translators know how to scan a document and adapt it to the context, in order to faithfully reproduce its meaning.

We rely on highly specialized professionals, because a professional translation can only be completed by those who possess both linguistic skills and vertical knowledge in a given sector.

We preserve and work on your business’s reputation, making sure your company’s message gets across in the right way.

LingoYou is the translation agency that allows organizations around the world to communicate correctly in any language and by any means.

Marketing Team LingoYou

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