Japanese Translation Services

Japanese Translation Services: The tyranny of minimum orders & your options

Why do translation companies have a minimum order amount?

Seems kind of ridiculous to pay US$50~300 for a short phrase, doesn’t? However, know that there’s a very good reason for minimum order amounts.

(Note that I’m not implying you should go with the ridiculous, or that you don’t have options!)

The reason why is because there are numerous overhead costs associated with any order, regardless of the volume. A typical project involves:

  • Document review and requirements clarification.
  • Project setup, management, and close out.
  • Other administration work, such as issuing invoices & receipts, etc.

As you can see, doing an English Japanese translation job properly is more than “just a short, one document translation.” That is, regardless of the size of an order, for business and legal reasons a thorough approach to handling translation projects is required.

And, the typical translation company needs to track hundreds if not thousands of documents simultaneously to ensure clients not only get quality of product, but also quality of service. This requires a substantial investment in processes and software.

I’m sure you can understand that there’s a cost associated with all these necessary business activities, which can only be recovered from the minimum order amount.

So, what are you to do if you have a short, 4 word sentence translation project? First, don’t automatically assume the translation company is trying to rip you off (While I’m sure there are some unscrupulous operations out there, the majority understands that this is a poor practice that is, ultimately, self defeating). Second, consider alternative options available to you, which could include:

  • Free online translation,
  • Volunteer groups, or
  • Reaching out on social media.

Think your translation project meets the minimum order threshold? Then contact the professional Japanese Translation Services in Tokyo, Japan for a free no obligation quote!