Inside the mind of translation

Inside the Mind: Top 10 Translation Search Phrases for May 2018

As a business owner, one of the interesting pieces of information I like to look at on a monthly basis is the top translation search phrases that lead people to TranslationRules.

It helps to give me an idea of what exactly translators and language professionals want to know and whether or not I’m providing the right information to them that can help them answer their questions.

So, in my monthly feature (that I just started this month :)), called Inside the Mind, I’m going to go over the top translation search phrases and see if we can answer those for you, just in case you have the same questions and are looking for some answers.

Before I start with the top translation search phrases, though, let me just say that visitors to TranslationRules found the site using almost 5,000 unique search terms and phrases. Here’s a screenshot:

Translation search phrases
These are just the unknown translation search terms and don’t include the known ones.

That’s a lot of search terms!

Here’s a good place to tell you that if you’re a translator or language professional and don’t yet have a website, you’re missing out. Start your website now.

Top 10 Translation Search Phrases

So, without further ado, here are the top 10 search terms that brought visitors to TranslationRules.com. Maybe one of them even brought you here!

#1 – Amazon

This one is a mystery to me. There is no way in H-E-double hockey sticks that TranslationRules ranks anywhere close to the front of the search engines for the word “Amazon.”

In fact, if I search on that word in Google right now, these are the top results I get:

Translation Search Phrase - Amazon

Two ads for Amazon and the link Amazon. The rest of the page is similar. So how is it that people are using the translation search phrase “amazon” and finding my page?

To be honest, I have no clue. But I’ll take it. Especially since I sell my books on Amazon.

#2 – How Much do Translators Make

This is it. The is one of the translation search phrases that keeps popping up week after week, month after month.

And for good reason.

While there are some people out there that love translation so much that they do it in their spare time or for free, professional translators want to make money.

And people that want to become professional translators want to get down to the nitty gritty and know that the hard work they put into becoming translators is going to pay off financially in the end.

Here’s the thing to remember about becoming a professional translator. You’re only limited in how much you make by one thing: yourself.

You can make as much or as little as you want. It takes time, it takes effort, and it takes patience (always with a little luck thrown in). But if you do what you need to do, you can make a good living as a freelance translator.

I’ve written a pretty good article on the how to make money as a translator if you’re interested.

#3 – Rules of Translation

This one is another of the translation search phrases that is a bit surprising, and is a phrase I wouldn’t suspect at first.

That’s because in general, when people search on the phrase “rules of translation” or “translation rules,” they are generally interested in finding out more about translation in math, as shown by the top result in Google:

Translation Rules

Not much to do with language translation here. Maybe I should have thought through the name of my website a little more 🙂

#4 – Translator Salary

Another one of the translation search phrases that I like because it really gets to the heart of what would-be translators are interested in.

However, I don’t like the term “salary” all that much because to me that implies a job where a translator is working in-house and is getting paid by the company a set salary.

When you’re a freelance translator, you receive an income, and that translator income fluctuates. That’s one of the hard things that comes with being a freelance translator.

You will have times of feast and times of famine. As a professional, your job is twofold:

  • Maximize your times of feasting while minimizing your times of famine, and
  • Making sure that you use the time of feasting to offset the times of famine.

As you do that, you will be able to minimize the up-and-down cycle that often accompanies freelance translators as they try to build a more stable client base.

#5 – Can U Get a Lot of Money by Being a Translator

First of all, this was the exact translation search phrase as written.

That being said, I will say that you won’t last very long as a freelance translator if you can’t spell correctly.

Everyone makes mistakes, but substituting a “U” for “You” isn’t going to get you very far.

Now, on to the answer to the question of if you can make a lot of money being a translator. Well, it depends on what you mean by a lot of money.

To some people, $40,000 a year is a lot of money.

For other people, $1 million a year isn’t very much.

And that’s not to say that one is right and the other is wrong. Some people are perfectly happy with earning less money and having more free time. Others want to work more to earn more.

That’s fine. As an answer, though, I will say that there are translators that are earning six figures per year. Not every translator is earning that much but there are some.

I don’t know any translator that makes over $1 million. That’s not to say that they don’t exist. They certainly could.

But a six figure salary or one in the high five figures is certainly doable. It does depend on a lot of factors and a willingness to work.

#6 – How Much Arabic Translator Make UK

Another one of the complete translation search phrases 🙂

I don’t know the answer to this question. I don’t live in the UK and don’t know any translator that lives there. I’m also not up to date on translation rates for Arabic.

And here’s another thing. You can’t just ask, “Hey, how much can an Arabic translator make?”. The reason is because like I said above, there are too many factors in play to provide an adequate answer.

And one of the major factors is your language combination. Is it Arabic to English or English to Arabic? Or maybe it’s Finnish to Arabic, Arabic to Chinese, or Punjabi to Arabic.

Each of those language combinations has a supply and demand. You’ll earn as much as the market dictates.

In the meantime, though, you can look at some EU translation rates.

#7 – Chinese Translator Salary in India

I don’t live in India, but according to Wikipedia, there are about 6,000 expatriate Chinese living in India.

Chinese in India

To me, that doesn’t seem like a lot. Especially in a country of over 1 billion people.

So I’m guessing that there isn’t too much of a demand for Chinese translators in India.

And if there’s not much of a demand for your services, you’re not going to be able to earn very much.

However, if you’re interested in the state of the translation industry in India irrespective of Chinese, follow the link.

#8 – How Much Money do Translators Make

There’s no easy answer to this question. Why? Because the answer depends on:

  • language combination
  • location
  • experience
  • focus
  • hours worked
  • income not strictly from translation
  • translation area of specialization
  • perceived education value
  • client expectations
  • plus a million other things

The simple answer is that translators make as much as they want to make. If you’re not making what you think you should, then you need to change something.

Obviously what you’re doing is not working. So change it up. Test. Figure out what works and do more. Remove things that aren’t working. Figure things out.

It really is up to you.

#9 – How Much to Charge for Translation

Charge what you’re worth and see if the market will bear that price. If not, you might have to go down in price OR change who your clientele is.

Translators are so scared to reveal what they charge because they think that translators will undercut them in price.

Well guess what?

There are already thousands of translators with your exact language combination that charge less than you.

So you can’t use that excuse. You have to understand who your particular market is and charge them what they will pay. And as I said, if they won’t pay and you want to make more, find a market that will pay or change up the services you offer.

For a more in-depth discussion on this topic, see my article on what you should charge as a freelance translator.

#10 – Translation Rules

Yeah it does.


Want more tips on becoming a successful freelance translator? Read my book.

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