English to Spanish Translation Best Practices

Spanish translation

With more than 572 million people speaking Spanish worldwide, translating your content from English to Spanish is certainly a worthwhile investment. However, Spanish translations can be challenging since the language is diverse and has many unique spoken and written variations.

Here are some considerations for managing these challenges to achieve top-notch English to Spanish translation:

Pay Close Attention to the Variants in the Spanish Language

One of the primary considerations when planning your English to Spanish translation is to remember that there are two distinct versions of modern-day Spanish; they are Spanish for Spain and Latin-American Spanish. Although the differences do not ultimately hinder communication, it is still important to know and understand what makes them unique. Your English to Spanish translation service will be able to sort through these variations with you.

Some of the unique aspects of the language include:

  • There are differences in tenses. In Spain, the present perfect tense is much more common than in Latin America, where the simple past is preferred.
  • The words for “you” are different. The pronouns vosotros and vosotras are used in Spain to represent a casual form of “you,” while ustedes is used in formal situations. In contrast, the word vosotros is not part of Latin American Spanish, so people there use ustedes in both formal and informal manners.
  • There are some differences in vocabularies between the two versions. One of the primary distinctions between Spanish in Latin America and Spain is that different words are used for the same objects; for example, a cell phone in Spain is móvil, but it is celular in Latin America.

Ensure That Your Translation Aligns with Your Target Audience

Although there are variations to consider in the Spanish language, translating to Spanish does not have to be overwhelming, especially if you work with a Spanish language translation services company.

Here are some ways to make sure that your English to Spanish translations suit your target clients:

  • If your objective is to attract a broad audience of Spanish speakers who live in different locations, then direct your translation in a neutral, non-localized manner.
  • When you are focusing on a specific audience, opt for a localized message that includes regional and cultural nuances.
  • Make sure that your content sounds natural to native speakers in your target region.

Focus on the Details

When translating English phrases to Spanish, be aware of specific details, including:

  • Spanish content can be long, expanding by as much as 25% when translated from English. For instance, a 500-word text in English is likely to be about 630 words in Spanish.
  • In the Spanish language, each noun is labeled as either masculine or feminine, with the articles el for masculine or la for feminine appearing before the noun.
  • The word “it” is often excluded in Spanish. While the English language allows for the use of it as part of a natural way of speaking or writing, that is not the case in Spanish.
  • Spanish adjectives generally come after the nouns, which is typically the opposite in English.

Practice Spanish Translation Exercises to Enhance Content Quality

The first step in implementing your translation project is to partner with a Spanish translation company to ensure that your work is the best it can be. Following that, another step is for your team to practice some Spanish translations to help you frame your content for your target audience. When you translate content from English to Spanish, you focus on how native Spanish speakers write their text. As a result, you start to think in a similar way to native speakers, which helps you communicate your message more effectively to your Spanish-speaking clients.

As part of this practice, consider these questions:

  • Do the English phrases have Spanish counterparts?
  • How are Spanish sentences constructed by native speakers?
  • What words do Spanish speakers choose when they are talking casually or formally?
  • What are common conversational phrases that are typically used in Spanish?

If you follow these tips, you can improve your content simply because you are thinking about Spanish in complete sentences, rather than just words. As such, your content will sound more natural.

Expanding your product to Spanish will attract countless new customers, especially since about 754 million people across the globe are anticipated to speak the language by 2060. By working with a certified Spanish translation services company, as well as following the best practices, you can ensure a precise translation that culturally represents your target audience.


Because Spanish is spoken by more than 572 million people worldwide, translating your product from English to Spanish is a worthwhile investment. Above are some best practices to follow to ensure that your English to Spanish translations are the best they can be.

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