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Translation within Sheets

Whether you are translating product catalogs, website copy, UI text, or any other content, GPT for Sheets helps you remove ambiguity and tailor translations to your needs by defining detailed guidelines. This guide walks you through translating a list of product names for a shoe store into French, and optimizing your results.

While you can also use the GPT_TRANSLATE function to perform this task, we'll focus on using the Translate bulk tool in this guide.

Step 1: Get started

Prerequisites


Open the GPT for Sheets add-on and run the Translate bulk tool with French as target language on a few rows to see how it works.

Select Extensions, GPT for Sheets and Docs, and Open. Then Bulk tools tab, Translate. Then select the column to Translate. Enter the language to translate To. Select the column to write results in. Click Translate.

If you find the translation quality sufficient, go ahead and launch your bulk translation! Otherwise, check how to improve your results in Step 2.

Step 2: Improve your results (optional)

To obtain the best results when translating your text, consider the following approaches:

GoalRecommended approach
Improve source text understandingSet the source language
The source language can be detected by the AI, but defining it helps if the source text contains short ambiguous phrases. For example, "flats" could be shoes with no heels in American English, but could also be apartments in British English.
Ensure appropriate styleProvide specific instructions
Providing context or specific rules to follow while translating improves the translation quality. You can specify the tone (formal or informal), audience, and pitfalls to avoid.
Maintain consistent terminologyCreate a glossary
Glossaries help keep translations consistent, respect corporate terminology, and ensure on-brand translations. You can copy and paste an existing glossary or create one from scratch.
Enhance translation accuracySelect the gpt-4o model
gpt-4o handles more nuances, supports more languages, and follows instructions and the glossary with more accuracy than most models. It is also much cheaper and faster than gpt-4 and gpt-4-turbo. Learn more.
Define the level of accuracy/freedom in the translationAdjust the creativity level
For straightforward technical translations, set a low creativity level to ensure precision. For marketing materials or creative content, increase the creativity level of your translations.

Best practice: Compare various results by putting the results in a new column each time you change the settings.

Once you have defined the best settings for your translation project, you are ready to launch your bulk translation. Select more cells or even all cells, click Run rows, and watch GPT for Sheets handle the rest of the translations.