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Spanish language service provider: Proficiency in one of the most widely used languages in the world

oneword’s language experts will gladly advise you and prepare a free quote for you after examining your documents thoroughly. We have a global network of professional native-speaker translators at our disposal to provide German to Spanish or Spanish to German translations certified to ISO 17100. And all to your advantage: Every document is technically and grammatically correct and the style and tone are accurately processed and translated by experts and experienced translators.

Spanish translations by oneword: certified, cost effective and on time

  • Native-speaker translators

  • Qualified specialist translators with subject area expertise

  • Independent revisers

  • Teams of linguistically trained project and quality managers

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Translations for Spain, Latin America and the USA

How companies can literally be lost for words in Spanish-speaking markets

Over the past few decades, Spanish has once again risen to economic prominence. With approximately 420 million speakers, it is the third most commonly spoken language in the world today. When seen together, Spanish-speaking countries form one of the world’s largest economic markets. Spain, Mexico, Chile, Columbia and Peru all play major roles.  According to the BDI (the Confederation of German Industry), Germany is the third largest investor in Latin America and Spain’s second largest trading partner. Around 2000 German companies have invested a total of 60 billion euros in the countries of Latin America. In 2012, the volume of bilateral German-Latin American trade stood at 47 billion euros and bilateral German-Spanish trade amounted to 53 billion euros.


“oneword is an extremely reliable and trustworthy partner, who makes us feel well taken care of. They meet our requirements in terms of quality, expertise, project management and communication in every way. We are completely satisfied with every aspect of the service – a big ‘thank you’ to the whole team! It’s a pleasure to work with you!”

Karen Koops, Team Leader, Technical Documentation, MEDION AG

Thanks to this, the importance of translations from German into Spanish and vice versa has continued to grow in recent years. However, depending on the continent, country and even region in which it is used, the Spanish language has several distinct features. Some of the differences are slight, and others are quite striking. Translation agencies must always be aware of these differences and take them into account when preparing Spanish language translations for specific target countries. Many regions of Spain also have a second official language, for example: Catalan (Catalonia), Basque (the Basque country) or Galician (Galicia). These variants of Spanish are widely used in everyday life and in commercial transactions, and are often more readily accepted than Castilian Spanish.


Spanish in Latin America

Since colonial times, the Spanish language used in Latin America, has developed along different lines than in Europe. It still uses words, terminology and idioms that sound rather old fashioned to European Spanish-speakers. Words from indigenous languages, such as Nahuatl (Mexico) or Quechua (Peru, Bolivia, Ecuador) are also freely used in spoken New World Spanish. In Spain, specific local lexical features as used in these countries are usually not implemented and are largely unknown. Latin American Spanish also pronounces some words differently, uses different meanings for homonyms, and handles pronouns in a different way. For example, in many Latin American countries it is quite normal to use the formal manner of address when talking to your parents or friends. Using the less formal term of address (equivalent to ‘tu’ in French or ‘du’ in German) can sometimes be seen as a faux pas.


Spanish translations for marketing

It is these specific linguistic features that often present the greatest challenges to translators, especially when handling marketing texts. This is not simply because translations into Spanish may be 15 to 30% longer, making desktop publishing tasks that much harder for Spanish. When translating advertising texts, websites, headlines or slogans into Spanish, the translator also has to tailor the message to suit the idiosyncrasies of each Spanish or Latin American culture and tradition. Brand names for new products are a particular challenge. Great care must be taken to ensure that the name doesn’t have a second, inappropriate meaning in its target market. Launching a product without thoroughly researching its name may result in a negative impact on the company, and make the product less attractive, and damage its marketing potential. A fine example of this is the question that was put to the Latin American export market in the 1960s. Would a car with the name ‘Nova’ (which sounds the same as the Spanish No va for ‘does not work’) be a success? Obviously not. Vehicles with model names like ‘Q3’ (the adjective cutre, pronounced the same, meaning sleazy), ‘Matador’ (butcher) or ‘Laputa’ (prostitute) don not sound particularly attractive. It is unlikely that potential customers would be tempted to actually buy the vehicles, though they might be tempted to laugh! Clearly, engaging the services of a professional Spanish translator, who not only produces high quality translations but also has a thorough knowledge of the culture and traditions of the target country, is a sound long-term investment.  The German to Spanish translations oneword offers its customers are all created by experienced native speakers who are careful to take distinctive country-specific features into consideration.

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