Gengo offers on-demand and high-quality Japanese translation services at affordable rates. Thousands of companies large and small trust Gengo to fuel their global growth.
Working with Gengo gives you access to thousands of certified Japanese translators with years of translation and localization experience, as well as our intuitive platform and embedded quality tools. Our expert team can help you manage projects of any size to find a flexible, efficient and economical solution to your translation needs.
Choose between two different levels of quality and pricing to match your needs. All translators have been pre-tested for each level to ensure high quality translations.
English to Japanese Translation
The vast differences between the Japanese and English languages can make translating between the two a challenge. Whereas the process of translating between two Indo-European languages usually involves just two steps (semantic analysis and syntactic transformation), breaking down the various nuances and translating between English and Japanese can involve five or more steps; making the whole process far more complex and time-consuming.
Only highly skilled and experienced translators can be trusted with the task of ensuring your content is as accurate and impactful as possible. While traditional English to Japanese translation services calculate their fees by page or per hour, Gengo has a simple and easy to calculate per word pricing system. This way, our customers can be sure of the price they will pay before any work has even begun. Pricing made simple.
Japanese translation tips
Know your audience
It’s extremely important to define your target audience in Japan. Unlike English, the Japanese language has many levels of politeness, each with their own subtle differences. A key feature of this is honorifics, which are in practice different titles used to show varying degrees of respect. It’s important to note that English business writing tends to be much less formal than Japanese business writing. Accordingly, a simple word-for-word translation from English to Japanese may at best be ineffective and at worst be read as rude. Gengo’s native Japanese translators possess an intimate knowledge of both the Japanese language and Japanese culture, making them well-placed to ensure your content is both appropriate and effective.
Avoid machine translation
No machine translator can as yet produce native-sounding Japanese. More often than not, machine translation from English to Japanese or Japanese to English is clunky, unnatural and in extreme cases, incomprehensible. While machine translation can be useful for translating single words or basic text, it’s far from business-ready.
Popular Japanese translation phrases
Take a look at some of the most popular and searched for English phrases and their Japanese translations.
|What to translate from English||Japanese translation||Romaji*|
|I love you||愛してる||Aishiteru|
|How are you?||お元気ですか||O genki desuka|
* Romaji, from rōma ‘Roman’ + ji ‘letter(s)’, is a system of romanized spelling used to transliterate Japanese.
Japanese language facts
Japanese is part of the Japonic language family. Although Japanese has no genetic relationship to Chinese, Chinese characters, or Kanji, make up one of the three alphabets used in written Japanese, along with Katakana and Hiragana. Despite close geographic proximity, the Japanese language shares very little with Korean and makes only limited use of Latin script, which is typically reserved for imported acronyms and the like.
- Japanese is the official and main language of Japan and spoken by roughly 127 million people.
- Unlike English, which is closely tied to Romance and Germanic languages, Japanese is not closely related to any other major language.
- The Japanese written language is considered one of the world’s most difficult to learn, with 4 distinct systems of writing: Kanji, Hiragana, Katakana and Romaji.
- Japanese is the 9th most-spoken language worldwide, but it’s the third-largest language on the Internet, behind English and Spanish.
Japanese regions and sub-dialects
Japanese is spoken almost exclusively in Japan itself, across each of the country’s four main islands: Honshu, Kyushu, Shikoku and Okinawa. At different points in history, however, the Japanese language has also been spoken across Taiwan and Korea, as well as in certain parts of China and the Philippines. Within Japanese there are many different sub-dialects which are largely mutually intelligible.
The two most distinct of these are the Tokyo-type dialect and the Kyoto-Osaka-type dialect, which differ in terms of cadence, intonation and vocabulary. Although many Japanese speakers consider Ryukyuan, the native language of the Okinawan archipelago, to be a dialect of Japanese, most linguists consider it to constitute a language unto itself. Japanese is also spoken in emigrant communities worldwide. The largest Japanese emigrant communities exist in Brazil, the United States (especially in Hawaii, where around 12 percent of the population are Japanese speakers), the Philippines, China and Canada.
Japanese translation services
Gengo is the leading provider in professional English to Japanese translation. With thousands of professional English to Japanese translators worldwide, no other translation company can so quickly provide such high quality Japanese translation at such competitive rates.
Our areas of expertise
Gengo has extensive experience translating from English to Japanese in a wide range of document and content types, including:
- Japanese website localization
- Japanese mobile app localization
- Japanese game localization
- Japanese product description translation
- Customer support translation
- Translate marketing copy, ads and social media
- Translate news articles and entertainment
- Translate travel listings and guides
- Japanese document translation
- Translate emails, letters and more
Gengo’s Japanese translators are experts in their field with years of professional translation experience under their belts. This is why Gengo is trusted by global companies like YouTube, Airbnb and Sony to translate content at high quality and lightning speed. Our innovative translation platform and global network of translators means that no matter the size or complexity of your Japanese translation project, we are able to deliver on time, every time, with quality assured.
If you are looking to translate your English content not only to Japanese, here are some more available languages:
Localizing websites using hreflang meta tags
When translating a website it’s important to ensure that search engines are able to understand exactly what language (or languages) your content is available in. In addition to the language attribute on the
<html> tag, each page should also include a
<head> section in which links to its localized equivalent are listed. If the primary language of your website is English, for example, and you want to translate it into Japanese, then every translated page should include the following block of code in the
<link rel="alternate" href="https://example.com/about/" hreflang="en" /> <link rel="alternate" href="https://example.com/ja/about/" hreflang="ja" />
Keep in mind that this block should be added to both the original and the localized versions of your page (in this case: example.com/about/ & example.com/ja/about/). By doing this, each page points to every available localized version of itself, making it easy for search engines to understand the structure of your site and display the appropriate translation for every user.
Targeting a language and a country
In addition to specifying the language that your content is written in, you can also specify particular countries that you would like to target. This is ideal for a language that is spoken in multiple countries, such as Japanese (spoken in Japan, as well as in expatriate communities in Brazil and the US, among others). To do this, the country to be targeted is simply included in the hreflang attribute, like so:
<link rel="alternate" href="https://example.com/ja/" hreflang="ja" /> <link rel="alternate" href="https://example.com/ja-BR/" hreflang="ja-br" /> <link rel="alternate" href="https://example.com/ja-US/" hreflang="ja-us" />