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Using Google Translate - Dupe Content?

 9:36 am on Jul 14, 2010 (gmt 0)

Hi All,

We are about to launch in 12 other markets for mainly a PPC strategy. We are using Google's on site tool to translate the English copy on the site. (nightmare, i would have preferred native language copywriters...)

oursite.de will be in german,
oursite.be will be in belgium etc.

the sites are written in English and dependant on teh tld depends on the translation.

My questions is will Google see these 12 sites in English?

I am about to run a test but cannot see Google indexing my page in the time I need an answer/idea.





 1:49 pm on Jul 14, 2010 (gmt 0)

I haven't tested it my self so this is just an opinion..I do not think google translates foreign languages into English, which is what you are asking about.


 2:14 pm on Jul 14, 2010 (gmt 0)

Dont think I explained it well. THe sites will use english text but be automatically translated as a user hits them. (The tool runs in javascript)

Would a Googlebot see the english text or the translated.


 2:28 pm on Jul 14, 2010 (gmt 0)

Google will see english version, I am almost certain in it. You can test it yourself by using "Fetch as Googlebot" functionality in Webmaster tools.


 2:48 pm on Jul 14, 2010 (gmt 0)

It's not easy to predict today. A year ago or so googlebot would only have seen the English. And even today, all the other search engines are probably going to see the English. If i had to guess, it's what I would predict is still the case with Google, even today.

The surest approach would be to cache the translation and serve it directly when the page is requested. This method would also avoid the latency that gets introduced by running the translation tool dynamically every time the page loads - and slowing it down rather horribly.

If you want to know how googlebot sees the page today, there is one sure way. Set up a test page on a Webmaster Tools verified domain. Then use the "Fetch as Googlebot" tool in the Labs area of your WMT account.


 5:47 pm on Jul 20, 2010 (gmt 0)

Brilliant, thanks all.


 7:47 pm on Aug 30, 2010 (gmt 0)

Here's a new development - and depending on how you use Google Translate, it could be very important. It's a comment from Google's JohnMu

I just want to add a word of warning here -- using automated translation tools to directly create content for your site could be seen as creating auto-generated content, which would be against our Webmaster Guidelines. Instead of just taking the output of a program like Google Translate, I'd strongly recommend at least having it corrected before putting it online.


As I read that, he's saying that auto-translation left uncorrected may have so many odd language choices that it will trip Google's automated filter that identifies auto-generated text (Markov chain garbage, etc.)

So it's not a duplicate content concern (which is not a penalty) but it's an auto-generated content flag, which really IS a penalty.

Thanks to Search Engine Roundtable [seroundtable.com] for spotting the story.

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