Translator vs Interpreter: 8 Main Differences

If you work within the global market, it is highly likely that your business is in need of a linguistic service, such as that of an interpreter or a translator.

The need for languages has increased significantly due to cultural diversification and multilingualism, which can even occasionally take place within the same country.

If you wish to succeed globally, you will most certainly be all the more in need of an interpreting or translation service.

The terms “translator” and “interpreter” are often used interchangeably, as in the eyes of many people, they do the same job.

However, they carry out two very separate disciplines that require a very different set of skills and capabilities.

Translator vs interpreter: what are the differences?

Translators and interpreters work with foreign languages, in order to convey a message from a “source” language, into a “target” language.

As a result of these similarities, the two terms continue to be mixed up by the majority of people.

Nevertheless, we are going to explore 8 key points to help you differentiate a translator from an interpreter, and we are also going to establish which linguistic service your company is in need of.

  • Spoken word vs. written word

Even though the goal of interpreters and translators is to convey a message from one language to another, their methods differ.

Translators work on paper or on digital documents, and for the most part, translate into their first language.

They can use dictionaries, as well as other translation tools, which are specific to one language, in order to perfect their work. They also have the chance to carry out research throughout the translation process.

On the other hand, interpreters verbally relay information, obtained from speech in another language.

They frequently work with two languages, and interpret what the speaker says in real time, in order to ensure the audience understands what is being said.

An interpreter can listen to and interpret more than one language at once.

More often than not, the interpretation is carried out by one or more professionals, who are on site, even though with technological advancements, certain interpreters now work remotely via conference calls, or over the phone.

For example, you will certainly need an interpreter for your call centre, seeing as its structure centres around direct contact with clients in order to gather leads, the carrying out of market research, or insuring that follow-up actions are carried out.

In certain cases, having an interpreter to hand will prove beneficial within the international market.

  • Costing

Translators versus interpreters – both base their rates on various factors, because they do not offer the same service.

A translator normally charges per word or by the page, whereas an interpreter will be more likely to charge an hourly rate.

  • Pace of work

As previously mentioned, interpreters deal with real time speech, as opposed to translators, who translate written language.

This means that translators usually have time to undertake research, in order to guarantee the quality of their translation, whereas interpreters can only carry out research surrounding the subject they are going to be dealing with beforehand.

Even though they are not particularly perceptible to a set schedule, translators still have deadlines to meet.

  • One language vs. two languages

You will entrust a translator to translate a document written in a foreign language, into their native language.

It’s quite rare for translators to translate their native language into another language, although it does sometimes happen.

On the other hand, interpreters must juggle between two, or even more languages, all whilst relaying the information both ways.

In a spoken conversation, they must first listen to, and interpret what the speaker is saying, and then repeat the same process for the other person present in the conversation.

  • Mobility

Due to the nature of their work, translators can work remotely, no matter where they are in the world, which is why companies have a large group of translators who they can work with.

This is because a large number of businesses choose to outsource translation services. For the most part, interpreters work face to face and in person.

This need for them to be present at work, reduces their range of recruitment possibilities.

However, thanks to advancements in video conferencing, they now have the opportunity to offer a virtual interpreting service. There are excellent video conferencing solutions available on the market.

  • Use of resources

Generally speaking, translators have access to different resources, such as dictionaries, or computer assisted translation (CAT) tools throughout the whole translation process.

Some companies can have specific pieces of software that they prefer using, where they can manage vendor access from afar, allowing the translators to also have access.

Due to the sensitive nature of their job, interpreters use their memory and their knowledge of language as their primary resource, even more so because they do not have time to undertake research on the spot.

Only conference interpreters have the chance to carry out some research beforehand, if they are given the agenda of the event in advance.

  • Accuracy

Although interpreters go to great lengths to translate a message from one language to another with the highest degree of accuracy, this isn’t always easy, given the speed at which they work.

Once an interpreter has relayed the information, it is difficult to go back and correct a mistake, if they realise they have made one. Translators have more time in front of them, and therefore they have more time to check their work before handing it over to their client.

  • Non-verbal communication

Translators only work with written language. On the other hand, interpreters have a more holistic approach to their job. In other words, they take into consideration the tone of the speaker, their facial expressions, and their body language, in order to reflect the message in its entirety.

Translator vs interpreter: which one to choose?

Even though there are similarities between a translator and an interpreter, the biggest thing that separates the two, is the service which they provide.

As soon as you select which linguistic service you need, you must fully understand the differences between the role of an interpreter versus that of a translator, so that you choose the right one for your company.

Our linguistic service agency here at BeTranslated offers you a translation and interpreting service adapted to your individual needs.

We work with highly qualified translators, each with their own expertise. Get in touch with us for more information.

Insurance Translation Services for Industry Professionals

As a European company, we provide an online translation service to a wide range of businesses, irrespective of their geographical location, or field of work. If there is one sector that requires having access to flawless and professional translations, performed by expert linguists and agencies, it is the insurance industry.

For this reason, many insurance companies have become regular returning customers for BeTranslated, as their expertise and specialist multilingual service is a valuable asset for insurers to have helping them with their technical linguistic needs.

We’re going to be delving deeper into the insurance industry’s current situation in the UK, hopefully giving you a better insight into the industry, as well as the professional translation services we can provide to you and your business.

Top insurance trends in the UK for 2024

  • Climate change: this growing issue has resulted in unprecedented damage to insured homes up and down the United Kingdom, which has seen a rapid rise in insurance prices.
  • Inflated rates: This is a knock-on effect of the inflation in repair costs, with businesses desperately attempting to balance their margins. It is estimated that the increase in the cost of insuring your home is set to get even higher, with the Financial Times predicting more than a 33% rise in the UK over the coming 2 years.
  • Car insurance prices at an all-time high: A current nationwide shortage in vehicle parts and staff has resulted in insurers raising their rates. Car insurance giants, Admiral, have predicted a plateau in inflated prices as early as 2024. However, this has been heavily debated amongst industry experts, with many believing we will continue to see an increase in rates up until 2025 at the very least.
  • Recover period for the industry: the insurance industry has found itself in a recover period, following the effects of Brexit, the COVID-19 pandemic, and Russia’s invasion of Ukraine. With all of these events happening in quick succession, every UK insurance market is still feeling the full effects. Another stand out issue for UK insurance providers at the moment, is the ever-changing international markets.

The impact of Brexit on the UK insurance market

Travel insurance, haulage insurance, and seafood insurance, have all seen, or experienced first-hand, the immediate effects and changes brought about by Brexit.

Passport problems have made it more and more challenging for UK and EU financial providers to reach a deal.

Prudential, a London-based insurance company, considered moving its office headquarters to Hong Kong, due to tight EU regulations following Brexit.

65% of its staff in London have already been relocated to Hong Kong, with the company’s new CEO being appointed in Hong Kong too.

Although its office in the capital is staying put, it appears Prudential has been forced to reconsider their future endeavours following the aftermath of Brexit, with the renowned insurance company seemingly having its primary focus on the Asian market.

Brexit appears to have affected 60% of the commercial insurance industry worldwide, however, it is claimed to have impacted upon a staggering 100% of UK insurance companies.

Despite the previously mentioned factors having a significant impact upon the industry (COVID-19, climate change, and the war in Ukraine), experts unanimously agree that Brexit has been responsible for the vast majority of the UK insurance industry’s current deplorable state.

Insurance in the City of London

The London Market is unique, and is independent of the rest of the UK. It attracts a lot of global interest, so much so that out of the total instalments that take place, only 30% are UK-based, with the rest being received from clients overseas.

It is the only active market to have the top 20 assured reinsurance companies all present.

Furthermore, there are currently 140 certified insurance companies located in the City of London.

Over the past few years, we have witnessed an increase in the scrutiny surrounding high-exposure risks.

Insurance providers in London primarily specialise in non-life insurance, along with reinsurance.

The London Market is undergoing a technological advancement, with 33% of active insurers investing in new technology.

Insurers want to ensure that an efficient and flawless service is on offer for every broker and client.

Translation for insurance companies

Insurance companies work with industry-specific documents, for example, company policies and contracts, etc.

They often translate these technical documents in order to fulfil the legal and commercial requirements of the market, to which the insurance company is directed on, depending on the nationality of the policyholder.

Founded in 2002, BeTranslated has provided numerous widely recognised insurance translation services to all kinds of experienced and assured businesses within the financial sector.

The majority of our translators have an extensive knowledge of the insurance industry, with some of them even having being insurers themselves.

The following fields do not pose any difficulty whatsoever for our translators, as the databases which have been accumulated since the launch of BeTranslated, guarantee ultimate precision in any type of translation carried out.

BeTranslated is a professional translation agency that works with multiple linguistic combinations, be it translating an insurance policy in PDF format, from English to Spanish, or from French to German, or any other language.

Why use BeTranslated’s insurance translation services?

To help facilitate your international communication, we offer reviews and insurance translation services of the highest quality to insurance companies.

Our professional translators, who are industry experts, work under tight deadlines so that you can communicate with your clients and colleagues, whether they are in Spain, Europe, or anywhere else in the world, no matter your first language.

Take care when using online translation tools, as they make a lot of mistakes, and end up costing some companies a lot of money in the process.

Your communication is the face of your business, and it has to be impeccable!

Quotes and an efficient, speedy serviceWe are at your disposal 24/7

Whether it is insurance policies for properties, vehicles, housing, families, pensions, finances, etc., insurers take care of the most personal and private affairs of their clients, with confidentiality being essential.

With BeTranslated, our clients can rest easy knowing that we respect the confidentiality of their documents throughout the process.

Our industry expert insurance translators respect the demands of the client, and promise to provide a translation service that is compliant with the very strict rules of the profession.

Trust in BeTranslated with your translations, with the guarantee that you will receive a high-quality service. Get a free quote!

SEO Translation – A Necessity in a Global Market

With businesses and retail brands now offering an online service to their customers, it is increasingly difficult for webpages to achieve a high ranking in search engines and algorithms, infringing upon their visibility towards their network of potential retailers and consumers.

It is here that the process of SEO translation comes into play.

Search engine optimisation has become a key marketing strategy and solution for businesses, whose objective is to have a strong e-commerce presence, in order to easily connect and reach consumers via the internet.

Fortunately, BeTranslated can lend a helping hand, with a team of worldwide translators at our client’s disposal, who are not only specialised in translation but as well as SEO translation and optimisation.

The team shares one common goal, which is to effectively increase the reach and visibility of any given brand.

The process of SEO translation

The process of SEO translation not only requires translating content from one language to another, such as English to French, it also requires taking into account several other factors.

Firstly, keywords must be defined, taking into consideration popular research terms, searches, and phrases, including cultural nuances based on search volumes provided by a set of tools, such as Ahrefs, Semrush, or Ubersuggest.

This helps to have a wider scope, providing a better ranking and positioning.

Then, an optimal translation of the content is carried out. The user’s experience is mainly considered, that’s to say the way that the business, the brand, or the product is researched in each language and each region in order to optimise it in the best way possible.

The goal is to communicate with the audience on a large scale. Search intent is also taken into consideration when optimising a piece of content or a webpage, that is to say if a customer is looking for information about a product or to directly purchase a product.

However, even with these strategies, it doesn’t end there. The content must sound natural and be easy to read for the user, if you want them to carry on reading the page.

SEO translation and the importance of context

This approach to multilingual translation responds effectively to Google’s requirements, in terms of relevant content, which allows access to a better context adaptation, essential for positioning and for facilitating a precise and effective measure of results.

Online translations are crucial for the SEO optimisation of webpages, and this is where IT outstaffing comes into play.

Online translation agencies and translation companies also play an important primary role in this field. With the ever-growing competition in the digital industry, the global visibility of brands and SEO translations have become a vital target and project within the sector.

SEO translation takes into account many factors, notably the research of keywords and a user’s experience in every language, country, and region. Language service providers, like BeTranslated, offer and deliver quality translations on time, with keywords being optimised for reference, and adapted to the criteria of each market.

Thanks to their extensive knowledge, you are guaranteed to have the highest visibility within search engines, so that you can connect to local and foreign clients, which in turn, boosts your credibility.

The advantages of translation with SEO optimisation

  • The professional translation of webpages’ content into other languages allows a company to increase their recognition internationally, by reaching out to a multilingual audience.
  • Moreover, expert human SEO translation improves their image, as this shows the conscious effort made by the business to better understand other countries and their cultures. Naturally, from a SEO positioning point of view, it is a considerable and major benefit.
  • Having a webpage’s contents in different languages will incite the search engines to include this content in search results in various locations, increasing the visibility of the brand in each language.

SEO expertise: a huge impact on your translations

Even though SEO translation is important for improving the international visibility of businesses, it is worth noting that the quality of the translation must not be ignored.

Poor translations are a common issue, and they can harm the image of the brand, as well as the user’s understanding of the messages conveyed by the content.

Our team at BeTranslated, ensures the quality of our translations by calling upon native speaking translators, as well as carrying out rigorous quality assurance checks.

Furthermore, our SEO expertise allows us to maximise the impact of our translations on a company’s positioning within search engines.

For a more strategic approach towards your SEO, beyond drafting, you could also get in touch with BeTranslated, as we offer SEO consulting services.

Experts and specialists in SEO, we at BeTranslated provide our clients with translations of a very high quality, with keywords optimised in accordance with SEO rules.

Furthermore, we adapt to the specific criteria of each keyword, and to the positioning strategy, meaning your site will be guaranteed to appear on the first few pages of Google, websites, e-commerce, or blogs, allowing retailers to browse the site, which will increase your sales.

Why should you use our professional translation agency?

Our expert team of highly specialised translators here at BeTranslated are at your disposal, ready to lead the necessary processes required for your project, ensuring that your website is using the correct terminology and slogans, so that your company can operate and perform to its full capacity.

Furthermore, you will be able to compete with the largest companies locally and globally by expanding your client base.

Here at BeTranslated, we specialise in SEO translation, and we understand how vital it is to stay a step ahead of your competitors.

With our localisation expertise and help, we can offer localised content, which drastically improves your user’s experience, and allows your company to earn a client’s trust, whilst simultaneously boosting your credentials.

For more information about our linguistic services and competitive rates, get in touch today for your free, no-obligation quote!

How To Get A Job In The Translation Industry

Navigating the job market can be like walking through a maze, especially when you’re trying to enter a specialised field like translation. But don’t fret; it’s far from impossible.

You’ve got skills, you’ve got passion, and after reading this article, you’ll have the roadmap you need to land your dream job in the translation industry.

Know Your Strengths and Weaknesses

Before diving head-first into job applications, take a step back and evaluate your own skill set. What languages do you speak fluently? Are there any specific industries you’re particularly knowledgeable about—like law, medicine, or technology?

Having a clear understanding of your strengths and weaknesses will not only help you target the right job opportunities but also give you a competitive edge when customising your CV and cover letters.

Speaking of which, crafting an impeccable CV is crucial.

Crafting a Winning CV

In the UK job market, your CV is more than just a piece of paper; it’s your professional passport. It’s what gets your foot in the door and sets the stage for an interview.

If you’re not familiar with the CV format common in the UK, take some time to research and adapt your existing CV to it.

There are numerous templates available online to get you started, but for those wanting a bit more flair, Adobe Express offers a range of creative yet professional CV templates you can utilise.

They also have a range of design tools that you can use to craft your CV from scratch.

Beyond format, focus on the content. Highlight your language proficiencies, relevant work experiences, and any translation-specific certifications you might hold.

Remember, it’s not just about showcasing your skills but also demonstrating how you can add value to a potential employer.

Get Certified, Get Ahead

While not a strict requirement for all translation jobs, getting certified can significantly boost your chances.

In the UK, you can consider accreditations like the Diploma in Translation (DipTrans) from the Chartered Institute of Linguists or membership with the Institute of Translation and Interpreting.

These credentials not only validate your skills but also make you more appealing to employers who see value in certified professionals.

Certification programs often include both theory and practical exams, covering various translation techniques and subject matter expertise.

By successfully completing these, you’re essentially demonstrating your readiness to tackle professional assignments.

Freelance vs In-House

At some point, you’ll need to decide between freelancing and working in-house. Both have their merits and drawbacks. Freelancing offers flexibility and the freedom to choose projects, but it also means inconsistent income and the hassle of running your own business.

On the other hand, in-house positions offer stability and often come with benefits like healthcare and retirement plans, but you might find yourself stuck with projects that don’t particularly interest you.

Consider your lifestyle, financial situation, and career goals when making this decision. Some people start with freelancing to build a portfolio and then transition to an in-house role, while others find freelancing to be their lifelong calling.

Learn to Network

Many people groan at the thought of networking, associating it with awkward conversations and forced smiles. However, when done right, networking can be your secret weapon in breaking into the translation industry.

Attend industry-specific events, webinars, or even online forums where you can connect with like-minded professionals.

And don’t just limit yourself to other translators; clients, agencies, and even educational instructors can offer invaluable insights and opportunities.

LinkedIn can be a great platform for networking as well. Engage with content, share your own insights, and don’t hesitate to connect with professionals in the field. You never know; your next job offer might just be a DM away.

Why Translation Services Need a VPN

Securing data using a virtual private network (VPN), is important in the translation industry.

Digital technology has made communication services easier to provide and access on a global scale.

For translators, these tools have allowed language and interpretation experts to localise messages, media and content for business people and media audiences in their home language, sometimes in real time.

As beneficial as this can be, one of the drawbacks is that supplying services using the internet can be fraught with security risks.

It can be a major disadvantage for translators, handling private data and even processing online payments for their services.

Fortunately, VPNs were created as a solution to address many of these concerns. Thus, if you work in translation and interpretation, here’s how VPNs can be an advantage to your service.

Network Security

Privacy and anonymity are key factors in why working professionals choose to use VPNs. They are also crucial for translators involved in exchanging crucial language information during international conflicts and civil unrest with the outside world.

They can interpret, translate, dub, and send written accounts to journalists, news media, criminal courts, and military allies that influence political outcomes.

VPNs are also useful for translators who work for international organisations that need real time translation using earpieces and live-streaming media.

In this case, VPNs for Kodi can be used to access and translate across live media without slowing down internet speeds.

Just as important, VPN’s privacy can prevent them from being traced later as it won’t collect and store browsing information.

Thus, VPN obscurity can keep them safe and allow them to continue providing translations.

Bypass Geo-blocking

As a translator, providing services across different cultures and countries, it’s essential for their income to remain accessible to clients around the world.

However, this isn’t always the case, as many find themselves unable to create profiles on freelance job boards because they’re blocked or restricted within a specific region.

Additionally, many websites with language knowledge and online resources that translators need to access for research purposes might also be blocked.

Many companies do this to comply with legal contracts and copyright laws in their country.

This is where VPNs can be beneficial to translators. These virtual private networks have the ability to mask an IP address and bypass this geo-blocking, as the real location can’t be identified by the website they’re trying to access.

Thus, with the location changed to a permitted region, they’ll be able to advertise their services and reach clients anywhere in the world.

Prevent Data Breaches

Many freelance translators often work with companies that need sensitive and non-disclosed data and information translated for business purposes.

These could be commercial translations for global financial and trade institutions, pre-patented product information or government and diplomatic intelligence that needs translating from one language to another.

For translators to provide their language services, this sensitive information needs to be transferred digitally through file sharing. However, this poses a big security risk.

For this reason, translators should ideally use a VPN to secure the network and encrypt data.

This is especially necessary if translators send and receive information from unsecured public network access points.

VPNs are therefore a useful protective measure to safeguard against potential cybercriminals who could attempt to hack the network and plant malware or breach data.

The VPN can then scramble the data so that it can’t be decoded and keeps it discrete.

In any case you can use a data breach tracker and control the information to stay secure.

Accessibility When Travelling

Translators often have to travel abroad to provide in-person services for multilingual people and events. As such they need to take digital devices with them to work on such as smartphones, tablets, and laptops.

The one issue with this is that when translators access accounts from different regions it could be picked up and flagged by security monitoring software from banks, to internet browsers, company websites and the digital device itself.

This could be marked as suspicious activity and make it difficult and frustrating to access necessary accounts.

Thus, when using a VPN during travels, translators can avoid being locked out of corporate profiles such as cloud storage data that use authorisations necessary for doing their job overseas and any other remote working areas.

The VPN can set your location connection to your regular home address to prevent any security warning from popping up.


VPNs offer immense benefits for translators who use the internet to provide their service. These private networks are useful for data privacy and encryption, corporate information and network security, anonymity, and easier accessibility when travelling.

Their use to generate a private network connection has assisted workers in the translation and interpretation industry conducting their work in a safer online environment.

Additionally, they give freelance translators better opportunities to acquire more international clients and cultural insights for language accuracy and knowledge building that would’ve otherwise been restricted to them.

These are the key reasons why VPNs are essential to the translation service industry.

Zoom Interpreting – Embracing The Digital Shift

It’s impossible not to notice the extent of which the world has changed, not only due to the pandemic, but also with the help of technological advancements.

Some of these changes that arose from the pandemic, are now past the point of irreversibility, which means we are solidly set in the digital age, whether that’s a good or a bad thing.

All kinds of industries have had to adapt to our new world and the new norm that is Zoom meetings, classes, and even parties.

The translation industry is no exception to this adaptation; requests for Zoom interpreting have become a common feature.

Why companies should embrace the digital shift

It is clear that, especially since the COVID pandemic, the economic, social and professional repercussions have been unlike anything we’ve known up to now.

A number of experts agree that habits adopted throughout the various lockdowns – such as keeping our distance and wearing face masks – will remain for a significant period, even now that the pandemic is over.

Likewise, the number of planes in the sky and trips away might be on the rise again but are unlikely to get back to the same levels as before the pandemic, particularly considering the extraordinary climate crisis and the increasing awareness of it among the wider public.

Consequently, remote working has increasingly become the norm. These days, it no longer surprises us to hear about companies who announce that they are saying goodbye to their expensive Silicon Valley offices and opting to work remotely full time.

These new ways of life are not a passing trend but will most likely mark the next decades of the 21st century – a century whereby a virtual, remote and socially distanced life is already second nature.

Any organisation unwilling to embrace the move online will run the risk of paying dearly for it.

Remote interpreting

Like the wider translation industry, interpreting is not immune to this situation. While some methods – such as simultaneous interpreting for organisations like the UN – are highly likely to re-emerge after the pandemic is over, the majority of interpretation services will take place remotely.

After a year of online corporate meetings between colleagues in different countries, we know full well that their smooth running no longer requires the physical presence of all participants.

Quite the opposite, as relegating these meetings to the past will mean companies can make significant savings on participants’ travel or hotel expenses.

Organisations have got to grips with this perfectly and are now investing in good-quality video conferencing software for better remote communication.

The boom in simultaneous Zoom interpreting is proof of that. Why fork out for a whole team’s travel when good Wi-Fi, high-performance video conferencing software and a PowerPoint translated into French or a PDF in German more than does the job?

Nevertheless, two aspects will make a world of difference: the quality of the interpreter’s work and how comfortable they are using Zoom in a professional capacity.

Zoom interpreting – 100% professional results

Do you want to organise a multilingual PowerPoint presentation for all your employees? Are you a company director giving an online talk to a group of international stakeholders? Or do you just want to seamlessly share ideas with a potential client or partner on the other side of the world?

Our qualified professional interpreters are experts in business interpretation – whether that is seminars, conferences, presentations, Q&As, meetings, or discussions – as well as trained in, and perfectly at ease, using Zoom.

This is what sets us apart from other agencies: with us, you can feel confident that we know our way around those pesky Zoom settings, guaranteeing smooth output and speech and no unwelcome disconnections or poor-quality images.

Our remote interpreters are renowned for their unimpeachable work.

These professionals, who work from the four corners of the globe and across time zones, are all experts in a chosen field, from IT or marketing to legal documents or medical texts. The quality of our Zoom simultaneous interpretation service is proof of their credentials.

Would you like to know more about our remote simultaneous interpretation services?

Contact one of our account managers to get a free, no-obligation quote.