How to Translate Subtitles for Different Languages

Creating multimedia content has quickly become one of the top ways to reach and market to audiences around the world. One great way to expand the reach of your video, webinar or podcast even further, however, is by adding subtitles in different languages.

Join us as we explore the benefits of multilingual subtitles, and how to get started on your next international subtitling project.

Why Subtitle Translation and Localization is Worth It

According to research by Verizon Media, 80% of people are more likely to watch an entire video when subtitles or closed captions are available.

We think English subtitles are a great start, but you shouldn’t stop there. Foreign language subtitles can expand the reach of your content even further.

Here’s why it’s worthwhile to think beyond English for subtitling your multimedia content:

  • A Bigger Target Audience
    By offering your video content in different languages, you expose your brand to a wider audience all over the world.
  • Great Accessibility and Inclusion
    Currently, it’s estimated that around 15% of the world’s population has a disability—that’s 1 billion people. Multilingual subtitles make your content more inclusive for everyone, including people who are Deaf or hard of hearing.
  • Better SEO
    Many search engines reward accessible, localized videos with higher rankings on search results pages. This puts your content front and center with a bigger audience.
  • Improved User Experience
    About 69% of people prefer to watch videos with the sound off when they’re in public spaces. Subtitles are proven to increase average watch time and improve the overall user experience.
  • Cost Savings
    Subtitling is more cost-effective than dubbing or voiceovers since you don’t have to hire voice talent. It’s a budget-friendly way to reach your global audience in their native language.

Best Practices for Subtitle Translation

To deliver a high-impact multimedia experience to your international audience, keep these best practices in mind:

  • Select Popular Languages
    Not sure where to start with subtitles? There are a few common languages that are spoken by a considerable proportion of the globe. Begin by offering subtitles in some of the world’s most popular languages, like English, Chinese, Hindi, Arabic, Spanish, French or German.
  • Hire a Professional Translator
    For high-visibility projects, hire a native speaker to translate your captions or subtitles. With their local expertise, you can ensure that all aspects of your content hit the right notes in a different culture.
  • Leave Enough Room for Captions
    Make sure your video has plenty of room for captions at the bottom of the screen. If anything important is obscured by the subtitle screen text, consider editing the video.
  • Choose the Right Fonts
    It’s important to select a legible font that’s compatible with your target languages. For example, if a Brazilian Portuguese font doesn’t have the right accent marks and characters, translated subtitles won’t display correctly.
  • Incorporate QA into Your Localization Workflow
    In video localization, it’s important to incorporate quality assurance, or QA, into your translation process. Choose a translation tool that helps you view your source and target language side-by-side for easy quality checks.

Use Localize for Subtitles

Thanks to the latest translation tools, the subtitle localization process is easier than ever.

To subtitle your content in new languages, try Localize for Subtitles. It’s the easiest way to add high-quality closed captions or subtitles to any multimedia experience.

image: a screenshot of the process to translate subtitles
A screenshot of the Localize for Subtitles interface.

Benefits of Localize for Subtitles:

Here’s how Localize can help with your next multimedia localization project:

  • Professional Translations Right in your TMS
    With Localize for Subtitles, you can add, edit and manage translation orders without ever having to leave your dashboard. Simply choose your languages, place your order and review your subtitles.
  • Easy To Use Features
    Our side-by-side subtitle editor makes the translation process easy. Compare your source language to the target language for fast quality assurance.
  • Multimedia Compatibility
    Localize for Subtitles is compatible with both audio and video projects. Adding localized subtitles creates a seamless experience for your international audience.

How it Works:

Localize for Subtitles has an easy workflow:

  1. Upload an SRT subtitle file to the Localize dashboard and choose your target languages.
  2. Select a free machine translation or order a professional translation.
  3. Use our built-in subtitle editor to check your translations.

And that’s it! Now you can upload your video subtitles anywhere on the web.


Try Localize for Audio and Video Translation

Ready to translate your multimedia projects for viewers around the world?

Localize is a user-friendly translation management platform that can help you translate videos, websites, mobile apps and more.

Click to request a free demo of Localize, or sign up to try it for yourself.

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