A Quick Guide To The Services You Need In The 21st Century Global Economy

It has already become apparent to many companies that communication in diverse languages is imperative in order to build and maintain a global brand in the 21st century. Less clear (at least to those not already acquainted with the translation industry) is the terminology associated with translation services.

What does it all mean?

This short guide is intended to help you navigate the sometimes confusing world of translation so you’ll know exactly which services will best fit your company’s needs.


Back Translation is a translation of a translated text back into the language of the original text, made without reference to the original. This is frequently done to ensure quality of the original translation, as well as for legal liability protection.

Desktop Publishing (DTP) is the design and production of publications using personal computers with graphics capability–an important component of linguistic services. The right firm will be able to format and recreate foreign language layouts, be familiar with a wide variety of software applications, and supervise the process from start to printing. Avantpage can do all this in over 150 languages.

Globalization refers to all the processes that a company goes through in order to enter the global marketplace. It encompasses the internationalization process of intelligent, culturally aware planning and design, as well as the multifaceted localization process that occurs when the product is actually adapted for the new market.

Internationalization is the process of ensuring that a product can be easily localized. This is an especially important concern when a new website, software application, or game is being created. Are there untranslatable phrases being used? Is the cultural milieu going to be too difficult to understand? Can the date and money formats be easily adapted from the US to France?

Interpreting refers to the facilitation of communication between people who are not speaking (or signing) the same language. It refers to oral or signed communication, whereas translation refers to written communication.

Localization is the process of modifying a product to accommodate differences in distinct markets. This can include structure, graphic design, copywriting, and anything else that needs to be changed for the market. A second definition, also widely used, is the translation of software, websites, and other technically challenging translations.

Transcreation is the creative adaptation of copy in the target language. It adapts your marketing message in a way that makes sense to your audience, not just technically, but emotionally and culturally as well. Transcreation is a necessary part of any good translation because some words and phrases do not have a direct translation in another language. One example of this is idiomatic usage, such as, “Don’t put all your eggs in one basket.” This statement would sound like utter nonsense, and new copy would have to be written in the target language. A second meaning of transcreation is to explain when a word or concept in the source language does not exist in the target language. For example, there is no “filibuster” in Spanish or Tagalog.

Translation is the act of producing a text, likewise called a “translation,” that communicates the same message in another language. This seems like the most basic of services, but in unprofessional hands, translation can do your company a world of damage. Just like you work with professional writers for your communications, you need professional translators. Trust a translation firm like Avantpage to avoid disaster!

Transliteration is writing a text in a different language so it “sounds” like the word in the source language. An example of transliteration would be writing the Russian word for thanks, “cпасибо” as “spasibo” in English script.


  • G11N stands for Globalization. This abbreviation is derived from the first and last letters of the word, while the 11 refers to the number of letters between the G and the N.
  • GILT stands for Globalization, Internationalization, Localization, and Translation. This term is used to refer to all of the language- and culture-related processes involved in global business.
  • I18N stands for Internationalization, derived in the same manner as G11N.
  • L10N stands for Localization, derived in the same way as G11N.

About Avantpage

Avantpage has more than 10 years of proven excellence in linguistic services and a complete translation solution for businesses. We offer language services such as translation, interpretation, localization, and multilingual desktop publishing designed to perform efficiently, consistently, and accurately. We believe that business is personal and our consultative style ensures that it is. Because we value what you do, we promise excellence and deliver it.