It may be surprising, but translating content for websites, apps, omnichannel, social platforms and printed marketing collateral is fundamentally a technology issue—meaning, you need to leverage the right translation solution for your needs.

Solutions that use smart automation and technologies can smoothly manage your localized content by:

  • Exporting translatable content from CMS/ backend systems to your linguists or translation vendors
  • Managing and automating the translation workflow
  • Receiving the translated content from your translators
  • Storing it in your backend system
  • Populating/updating your localized website and marketing materials

To choose the best translation approach for your organization, you’ll want to consider four common technologies:

  1. A language translation API
  2. A CMS translation connector
  3. A proxy translation solution
  4. A hybrid approach

Let’s take a closer look at the language translation APIs for website localization.

What are APIs?  

APIs, or Application Programming Interfaces, serve as intermediaries that allow different software applications to communicate with each other. An API is like a contract between two software pieces.  

An API is a contract between two software pieces. It sets rules on how one app can request services or data from another app. It also specifies how the other app should respond. 

For developers, an API abstracts the complexity of a system behind a set of clearly defined methods and endpoints. These methods explain how to perform actions, such as retrieving data or running a process. The endpoints indicate where to send these requests.  

The developer only needs to know how to send requests and handle responses in the correct format for the API. They don’t need to understand all the details of how the system works. 

Localization APIs for websites offer content for translation in various languages. This content can be easily accessed and translated by any application or platform.

This tech lets you send and get content from a translation memory using a basic RESTful API. You can use these translations to publish and maintain a localized version of your website.

You can improve your website by obtaining better links and aligning image links. You can use automated website translation for these links.

APIs also provide a reliable pipeline between a company’s CIM/PIM and a translation database. With API translation, teams can easily translate non-website content like emails or product documents for better understanding. Once translated, the content is transmitted back to you via the API.

APIs often require IT customer-side resources to implement and maintain.

What are the Benefits of API Translation? 


APIs require an authorization token to be present in every request. This ensures the requesting client is authorized to use the API.


APIs from great vendors implement a call-back notification system that automatically notifies customers once their translated content is completed.

Cost Savings

Most language translation APIs enable you to access your previously translated website content any time you wish—and use it in any content you wish. Great vendors provide this unlimited translation re-use at no additional cost.


An API can connect your translation vendor with all your content, not just what’s in your CMS. You can create a translation workflow for any kind of content, including third-party content, web applications and graphics. Other applications include:

  • PIMs for product feeds in other markets
  • Social media
  • Customer support content
  • Offline documents for local sales teams and customers
  • Printed and digital assets for brick-and-mortar stores
  • Localized advertisements
  • Email newsletters or promotions


API technology is compatible with a range of formats from plain text to HTML, XML and JSON. Working with a translation service provider will ensure your API will run smoothly with your website.


Translated content can be easily repurposed for any channel via the API, saving you on translation time and costs.

How a Typical API Works

  1. An HTTP POST is made with the origin-language content in HTML, XML, JSON or plain text within the file of the request.
  2. The translation vendor puts the POST content in a queue for translation. Then, it sends back headers with the request status. This includes the number of words that have been queued and translated.
  3. The file of the response contains the submitted content in the exact format in which it was sent, but with any previously translated content in place of the origin-language content. Previously translated content is accessed from translation memory.
  4. Subsequent requests containing the same segments, once they have been translated, will yield the translated content in the vendor’s response.

Read more about website translation in our ultimate guide to website translation.


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