Packaging translation


What is packaging translation and why is it important

Packaging translation is the process of translating product packaging information into different languages to reach a wider, international audience.

It is often a legal requirement to provide this information in the local language.

Translating product packaging involves providing accurate translations of product descriptions and other details to accurately meet the needs of a target market in each language.

This ensures that products are presented effectively and clearly understood across all cultures and languages.

How to go about getting your packaging translated

Prepare the source files

When it comes to getting your packaging translated, the first step is to finalise your packaging in English.

You need to ensure you have enough physical space on the packaging to accommodate the translated copy. Text volume often changes during translation. For instance, English to Spanish translation can increase the text by 20%.

Also, ensure the English text is finalised, adding changes to the source text during the translation process will prolong the project.

Partner with a professional translation agency

The second step is to find a reliable and professional translation service agency.

Make sure you do your research to ensure that the provider offers high-quality translations at a reasonable price and has ISO-certified processes.

A good translation agency should also have experience in packaging translation as well as a team of expert translators with an understanding of the industry and your target market.

Ask for examples of their past work and get references from other companies who have used their services.

Once the product translation project is in progress, there might be questions for translators about specific terms and approaches. Ensure you’re available for these and can lead the translation team in your desired direction.

Tips for ensuring effective and accurate packaging translation

Provide your chosen packaging translation agency with clear instructions on what needs to be translated, including any images or illustrations that are included in the packaging.

If you have product videos, training videos, product demos, and product brochures, do provide these as well. The extra context will help translators with creating accurate packaging translations for you.

Additionally, you may need to explain the concept behind your product or service so that they can properly convey the meaning in all the languages.

And, if your product has a brand-specific style of language, make sure you pass this on to the translators so they can adjust their work accordingly. This will help ensure that your message reaches the right audience.

To make the job even more efficient, we recommend you send us your design files in their native formats such as InDesign. This way, manually pasting translated text will no longer be necessary and the chances of mistakes can be significantly minimized.

Our experienced multilingual DTP team will typeset and finalise the files, and you will receive ready-to-print packaging translation.

Common mistakes made when translating packaging

Missing sentences

When translating your product’s packaging, it is important to be mindful of incomplete sentences, as these can lead to confusion and misunderstanding.

We’ve seen in the past project, where our clients tried using machine translation, that they’ve missed out entire sentences from their descriptions.

Extra sentences

We’ve also seen situations where additional text was added in during machine translations. This is not necessarily an issue but results in the target text deviating from the English source text.

Translation without context

It is crucial to keep the context in mind when translating your product’s packaging or labels.

Translating product packaging usually has little text. This creates a situation where translators do not have a lot of context for the words they work with.

Translating a phrase or sentence out of context can often lead to misunderstandings and misrepresentations of the product, resulting in customer confusion and dissatisfaction.

Therefore, it’s important to make sure that your chosen translation agency has full access to all the necessary information about your product so that they can ensure an accurate understanding of the source material before beginning the translation process.

The benefits of using Global LTS for your packaging translation needs

Hiring a professional translation agency, such as Global LTS, for your packaging translation has several key benefits.

Firstly agencies specialising in product translations will know and understand how to design and create labels and instructions in different languages, allowing them to create accurate and effective translations. We can also manage all files formats including InDesign translation

Secondly, our translators are often well-versed in the regulations of various countries, so they know what is acceptable in a given language and target markets.


Do you want to sell your product in other countries?

We can help! Our business translation services will ensure that your product packaging is translated accurately and appropriately for the international market. 

With our help, you can conquer new markets and increase your sales. We know the importance of accurate translations, so you can be sure that your product will be represented well in any country. 

Contact us today to get started on your project!

Product Packaging Translation Case Studies

Case Study

Category: Packaging translation

Description: Translation of product ingredients labels

Clients: The Grown Up Chocolate Company

Source Language: English

Target Languages: German

In this case, the client needed to translate text for their product labels. They were worried about using the correct terminology for the ingredients labels. 

We provided a translator who was experienced with ingredients labels translations, he knew what the commonly used terms were in the market.

Case Study

Category: Marketing translation

Description: Packaging Text Proofreading

Clients: Waken Mouthcare

Source Language: English

Target Languages: Polish, Portuguese, Slovak and Czech

Client has provided us with a draft translation done with machine translation and internal resources.

Our translators have reviewed the text and corrected all the errors, missing words and unified the text, so all languages reflected the English source text accurately and was fit for the local markets. 

Category: Marketing

Description: Packaging translation

Clients: Toxic Creative Agency

Source Languages: English

Target Languages: French, Spanish, German

The agency end client on this project was a manufacturer of pens that had produced a new calligraphy gift set. They needed to translate all of the copy on the packaging into the target languages, along with an instruction manual.

The packaging featured some simple descriptions, such as the title “Calligraphy Gift Set” and a list of contents (“Contains 4 calligraphy pens, 12 assorted colour ink cartridges” etc) which nevertheless needed to be translated exactly so that it would read naturally, as if written in the native language.

Our marketing translators used their skills to deliver exactly the right words. We also provided translations of the maintenance instructions, again using native language translators to achieve a perfect result that would not jar with the reader.


Translation of information needed for packaging for foreign markets.

We have experience with packaging translation. Our expert translators have local market knowledge and our DTP team specialises in the multilingual packaging artwork.

  • Access to expert local translators
  • Native professional translators
  • ISO-certified processes
  • Experienced DTP team
  • Ensure the source file is final.
  • Provide as much context as possible
  • Provide brand guidelines
  • Work directly from InDesign files

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