Case Study: High-volume retail and e-commerce translation services

Executive Summary

Canadian law requires retailers to provide consumers with content in both English and French. Businesses operating in Canada often require translation of general business communication as well. A major retailer sought to reduce their localization spend by shifting high-volume retail and e-commerce translation services from an in-house team to an external language partner. Scriptis responded to their Request for Proposal with the winning bid and took up the challenge to boost the efficiency of the client’s localization efforts.

The Challenge

Most importantly, the client needed high volumes of product information translated continuously and quickly. Scriptis was also tasked with translating and reformatting in-store signage, plus a wide variety of corporate and internal communications. These included press releases, human resources material, internal newsletters and memos, and IT-related documents.


The translation team at Scriptis includes a project manager, a translation team lead, and four in-house translators. The project manager receives and assigns packets of source content on a daily basis. To ensure consistency, translators make use of a termbase and style guide, and work within a collaborative computer-assisted translation (CAT) tool.

An essential element of a CAT tool is the translation memory. A translation memory is a database of saved source/target pairs from previous translations. When a source contains segments of text that have already been translated, the TM autocompletes the translation in the target document. This saves work for the translator, who then reviews and confirms the suggested translation in context. 

Signage for brick-and-mortar stores requires an additional step after translation and review. Because French translations require more characters than their English source, signs require post-translation reformatting in a graphic design program. Each team member received training in InDesign in order to streamline the process.

The team returns translations to the client and updates the translation memory on a rolling basis.


The Scriptis team translates 200,000 words per month for this client alone.  By taking advantage of Scriptis’ linguistic expertise, flexible workflows, and strong internal quality assurance, the client has benefited from a 40% reduction in their localization spend.

The client reports: 

Quick, friendly, efficient, I can always count on Scriptis when there are emergencies, even outside of business hours. I like to have one single point of contact; it helps with consistency. We chose Scriptis because we knew the work was good, and the prices were very competitive.  Our general impression of your people is that you are more human, less robotic, and that makes us feel reassured and more comfortable.