Translation of an entire website.
Thread poster: VictoriaLind

Local time: 05:21
English to Norwegian (Bokmal)
+ ...
Jul 17, 2014


First of all, I want to thank all of you who helped me so kindly when I was struggling with Trados. You guys are lifesavers for newbies like me!

Too the question: I have just landed my first website translation. Or, I don't know if I have "landed" it just yet, because we have not agreed upon a price yet. The client sent me all files that needs to be translated, and there's approximately 70 000-/+ words all together.

I proposed hourly pay, but he asked me to rather make a bid when I had looked through all the files.

I don't have any education in translation if that matters, but I am experienced, and I have translated many, many different types of text. But never this big! I am really not sure what to do or what to bid.

What would you bid for 70 000 words? How would you do this? I have to make the bid tomorrow, and I am actually getting nervous (silly). I have no idea what's normal for a job like this.

Thank you all in advance for taking your time to read my post.


[Edited at 2014-07-17 13:16 GMT]


Rachel Waddington  Identity Verified
United Kingdom
Local time: 04:21
Member (2014)
Dutch to English
+ ...
Be careful Jul 17, 2014

I would be nervous too unless this is a customer you have an established relationship with. What if you translate 70,000 words and the customer then says there is a problem with quality and refuses to pay?

Can you split the job into batches and get each batch approved and paid for before moving on to the next?

As to the rate, don't be tempted to charge less than your normal rate as its a big job - it just means that you will be working at a low rate for a long time and may have to turn down higher paid jobs.


Woodstock  Identity Verified
Local time: 05:21
Member (2005)
German to English
+ ...
Hello, I'm glad you were able to be helped here Jul 17, 2014

However, you will find many people tend not to be very forthcoming about the rates they charge in a public forum. The reason is that we are not only colleagues, but also competitors, plus it is often a behavior that is influenced by culture. In some countries talking about money, income, etc. in public just is not socially acceptable, in others it may be fine.

That being said, I would agree with Rachel about being careful with a new client - there has been a dramatic increase in scam attempts targeting translators in the last couple of years, so be sure your client is reliable and not a crook out to cheat you of your hard-earned money. You do that by informing yourself about the methods scammers use at the Proz Scam Alert Center:

and here:

If you know the client and have worked with him/her before, then stick to your price, or offer a flat fee that may be slightly less than your usual word price if it is a client you know well and work with regularly. Arranging for partial payments as Rachel suggested is also a very good idea. Such a big project would likely be taking up a lot of your time and may prevent you from accepting other jobs that would pay faster. You have to ensure your income stream, and most clients would understand that.

Good luck!


Sheila Wilson  Identity Verified
Local time: 04:21
Member (2007)
+ ...
One more point Jul 17, 2014

You need to be careful how you tackle this if you go ahead, after taking heed of the advice already given. The temptation could be to work full-time on this one project, for 6-7 weeks. That would be ill-advised for two reasons. Firstly, you probably wouldn't get your staged payments until you'd done the work, so you're risking losing a lot of money, and having zero income for a couple of months even if the client does pay. Secondly, you'd no doubt be turning down lots of other jobs, losing old clients and turning away potential ones.

If your client seems legit; accepts your rate and delivery date; pays as he goes... well, go for it!

The only reason I'd accept a discount would be if there was some way I could be sure that the work would go faster than normal e.g. if chunks of text were to be repeated.


Ana Cuesta  Identity Verified
Local time: 05:21
English to Spanish
Tit for tat Jul 17, 2014

Big jobs have the pros and cons others have already pointed out. So, if you feel you may need to give the client a discount on your regular rate to land the job and are prepared to grant it, you could perhaps quote your regular rate and then offer some sort of volume discount making it contingent on a more relaxed than normal deadline, so every party wins. The client should be able to see the rationale.

Also, I think staggered deliveries could be a good idea, both for you and for the client, arranging them perhaps according to the different levels/sections of the website.


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