Technology

Weglot: machine translation to help companies go international

In the market for translation services, estimated at more than 50,000 million euros, the French company Weglot wants to get its share of the pie. This solution combines the translation services of Google, Microsoft, DeepL and Yandex according to the language pairs and allows you to translate an entire web page.

Weglot is not a translator in the strict sense, but it offers a plugin on the main tools for designing and creating websites, such as WordPress, Shopify, BigCommerce, Jimdo or even Wix. “Weglot will automatically detect content in the original language and provide automatic translation,” Augustin Prot, Weglot’s CEO and co-founder, told . To refine the result, “the editor can choose to show or not an automatic translation and modify the translated content if he wishes,” specifies the CEO.

Screenshot of Weglot

During the Covid-19 pandemic, Weglot’s team saw an increase in demand for website creation. The market has gained the equivalent of “three or four years” in one year. This growth is reflected in the figures: Weglot reached almost five million euros in sales last year and expects to double that figure this year. Today, the solution manages about 60,000 multilingual sites, including almost 13% in France, and takes into account more than 100 languages.

A service for online merchants

Much of the growth is driven by e-commerce, with online merchants accounting for nearly 50% of the customer base. Machine translation makes perfect sense for an e-merchant who has hundreds of thousands of products on their pages. You can “search for new markets and take advantage of existing traffic,” says Augustin Prot.

The rest of the clientele is made up of corporate and marketing sites and private apps. Other players, such as universities, hotels and restaurants, can also use the machine translation service.

While translation can be a barrier to entry for small businesses, Weglot offers a SaaS subscription model that ranges from $ 9.99 per month to $ 500 per month, with a 10-day free trial period. The criteria taken into account are the number of words, the number of languages ​​added, as well as the number of calls to the service per month. Where a few years ago Weglot did not expect to attract large companies, the solution created in 2016 now manages to attract companies like Decathlon, its co-founder testifies.

Halfway between automation and manual translation

Weglot offers the default language option. The solution also has an “automatic redirect” feature. When active, it automatically redirects visitors to their language, based on their browser language and not their IP address.

The tool also takes into account the problems of referencing sites. “It was very important to us from the beginning,” emphasizes Augustin Prot. “In fact, instead of starting from scratch, we offer our customers a solution that eliminates the complexity of technical development. The remaining 20% ​​of the work consists of defining the translation quality standards they want and how they want to use Weglot. “

Improved machine translations and the addition of new languages ​​certainly serve Weglot’s interest. “The reliability of translations has taken a significant leap in DeepL and the neural networks of Microsoft and Google. The more it improves, the more attractive our solution is, because we make this technology available to companies, which are not our property, ”says the CEO.

Additionally, the popularity of video conferencing solutions during the pandemic has put the spotlight on the live transcription market. Google can now transcribe speeches in real time using AI, while Zoom has acquired technology from startup Kites to offer multilingual translation capabilities to its users. At the moment, Weglot is content to evolve in the market for website translation. The logic is “to concentrate on improving the product” which takes “70 to 80% of the resources”, evokes Augustin Prot. Among the most recent updates, Weglot allows, for example, to translate content into regional languages, such as the French of Quebec.

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