Dutch to English Translation: Avoid Online Translators, Work With Professionals

While online translators can be useful for getting a general idea of a text, they should not be relied upon for important translations. Despite how sophisticated current machine translation systems are, they are still unable to communicate the crucial feature of context.

Robynn Farrell
Robynn Farrell
May 23rd, 2023
Dutch to English Translation: Avoid Online Translators, Work With Professionals

Though artificial intelligence (AI) translation tools have advanced greatly, they still have one crucial drawback. When translating more intricate industry-related language with nuances and terminologies, the quality of online translations will always fall short. There are a number of problems with machine translation. Despite how sophisticated current machine translation systems are, they are still unable to communicate the crucial feature of context. You can use a translation app like Google Translate or a phone translation app, but they are not experts in real context and, therefore, will consistently make mistakes. Whether it comes to lost sales or trust, translation mistakes might cost your company much more than using human translators. 

To help avoid putting your business at risk, here are 7 reasons why you should avoid online translators and opt for working with professionals instead.

1. Grammatical Issues

Basic Dutch-to-English translation requirements, such as translating short sentences or words, can be assisted by online translation tools. However, when it comes to translating technical or business-related content or documents, they are ineffective. For instance, online Dutch translators wouldn’t be able to translate specific legal terms accurately. Therefore, it would be better for a professional translator with an extensive understanding of legal terminology to translate legal documents. Additionally, not all grammatical and structural errors, such as those involving active and passive voice sentences, can be found through an online translation program. A lengthy statement, for instance, may need to be divided into multiple shorter ones. This would be taken into account by competent and accurate translators, whereas a tool would produce a finished document that may be challenging to understand. Furthermore, translation programs frequently mistranslate homophones. For instance, a translation error between right (correct) and right (the reverse of left) could substantially alter the meaning of a text. It is best to avoid taking any chances with your professional material because grammatical and spelling errors may cost businesses millions of dollars.

2. Cultural and Regional Factors

Every culture has its own distinct lexicon, slang, and colloquialisms that machines haven't yet demonstrated they are able to translate. There are various languages where a single word can have a variety of meanings depending on the situation. Context is everything, and when taken out of context, words can lose their meaning. Moreover, a word may have one meaning in one culture and an entirely other meaning in another.  Machines haven't been able to accurately pick up on these fine distinctions, so their translations have never had that added flair. Online translators cannot account for dialect differences, let alone cultural differences, which can greatly impact the correctness of Dutch to English translations if ignored. 

Dutch translators, on the other hand, understand cultural and regional nuances that an online translator simply wouldn’t be able to and are more precise and knowledgeable in taking these things into account. This makes professional translation services more dependable than machine translation, an investment worth making for your business's reputation.

3. Google Translate Frequently Renders Word-For-Word Translations

Online machine translation tools have the potential to change the meaning of a text completely. Languages don't always match up word for word. For example, something that can be said in English in one word may need to be said in Dutch in four or even more. 

The majority of machine translators, like Google Translate, translate words at a one-to-one ratio, which renders them useless for explaining a word's underlying meaning.  For instance, the phrase "maak dat de kat wijs" in Dutch, which is technically translated in English as "make that the cat wise," is actually an exclamation and an expression of disbelief and cannot be translated word-for-word. A Dutch translation service, however, would be able to grasp the overall meaning of a phrase and translate text accurately and effortlessly.

4. Machines Aren’t Always Aware of Trending Slang or Language Changes

Machines are simply unable to stay up to date with the rate at which languages change. The algorithms used by machine translation systems need to be constantly improved and programmed, which consumes a lot of resources. A machine-learning translator also typically fails when attempting to translate Dutch to English slang and colloquialisms, or vice versa, because it cannot keep up with trending jargon. Not to mention, text can’t convey sarcasm used to emphasise a point in a sentence and, therefore, can’t be translated from one language to another. 

Regarding the difficulty in translating slang, the word "promptly" in English is the slang equivalent of "ff" in Dutch, but Google Translate is unable to identify this word. Using a Dutch translation service will help you avoid potential errors of this nature.

5. Unable to Translate Tone, Style, and Idioms

Every written article can use a variety of tones and styles. Machines, however, can’t tell the difference between neutral, persuasive, or friendly styles and tones in content. 

The intended tone of the original author is, therefore, often lost when using machine translation techniques. This may lead to a translation that is boring to read.

6. Inability to Translate Context

Foreign languages present a significant difficulty for machine translation programs since many of their words have multiple meanings.  This is due to the fact that they are unable to understand the context in which a word is used and that machine translations can only provide one meaning at a time due to technological restrictions. 

For example, utilising an online tool to translate Dutch to English gaming information may be unsuccessful, given the enormous amount of distinct, context-specific phrases each language may have for a particular game. 

When using online Dutch to English translators, the final translation will almost always differ from the initial understanding. It would, therefore, make more sense to hire a translator with in-depth knowledge of a specific industry to keep translations accurate and authentic.

7.  Absence of Human Touch

Without a doubt, artificial intelligence (AI) is continually developing in ways that have never been seen before. The output of machine translation is getting better and better at making sense. However, AI hasn't yet demonstrated the ability to perform better than human intellect in translation. 

It’s crucial that a translation is always geared toward a target audience and not simply readable, grammatically-correct text. Regardless of the language, local allusions, grammatical peculiarities, context, and cultural nuances can always be adjusted to the target audience when using a translator. 

What’s more, Dutch translators go one step beyond their online counterparts. 

Translations go through a time-tested process of multiple editing and proofreading to ensure accuracy.


Overall, while online translators can be useful for getting a general idea of a text, they should not be relied upon for important translations. It is always best to consult a professional translator who can accurately and effectively translate Dutch to English content. Languages' complexity can only be grasped via a human perspective. Producing a better outcome for your brand leaves no room for discussion between machine translation and human translation. 

Translation is considerably more than just memorising random words from a language. It involves more than just putting sentences together and translating them using Google Translate. Every language uses word order, syntax, and figures of speech in a unique way. 

Professional Dutch translators are adept at conveying your brand's tone and meeting industry needs. They are far more qualified than machines to identify linguistic nuances and language variants. They’re ideal intermediaries to guarantee error-free, optimised content for any audience your company wants to target.

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