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Furthermore, an added feature such as an online dictionary is a great way to increase traffic to your site. Before adding a dictionary, consider which languages you wish to cater for. This is important if your web site has a lot of technical content and users need a quick and easy solution for looking up difficult terms and concepts.
I have provided a list of web sites below that offer such a service:
http://eurodic.ip.lu/cgi-bin/edicbin/EuroDicWWW.pl http://www.june29.com/IDP/IDPsearch.html http://www.logos.it/dictionary/owa/old_dictionary.sp?lg=EN http://www.langtolang.com/ http://www.allwords.com/
3) Using automated translators
In my humble opinion, using an automated translator is absolute last resort! An automated translator today cannot accurately or effectively translate localised meanings, slang and grammar, but is acceptable if you only want to give your users a general idea of your web page's content.
Having a link to an automated translation service can also increase traffic to your web site. Unlike human translators, automated translators have capacity to cater for multiple languages. In short, this is an affordable, all-round solution.
The most important developer of automated translators is surely SYSTRAN S.A. - http://www.systransoft.com
FreeTranslation.com - http://www.freetranslation.com allows you to copy its automated translator interface and place it on your web page.
Of course it is possible to use a combination of all of above services - especially when your web site is large. Have your main pages translated by a human translator, and minor pages translated or available for translation by an online dictionary or automated translator service.
It is strategically important that first page users see is translated (or a link to a translated version available). This will ensure that foreign users will feel compelled to stay and browse your entire web site.
Paolo Risso is the General Project Manager of a team of Spanish and Italian free-lance translators. He is also the author of an on-line English-Italian Technical IT Dictionary (http://www.sententiae.it/asp/search.asp). Add our dictionary interface to your web page: http://www.sententiae.it/link.html