What to Look for in a Language Translation API

Recognizing the need to provide multilingual customer support is one thing, but implementing it at your organization is another—one that comes with a vast number of considerations. For organizations with processes and systems already in place to manage customer service functions, it’s impractical to ask your customer success team to utilize a new technology that’s completely separate from the CRM they’re used to working in or follow brand new processes. 

This is why language translation APIs are game changers for brands looking to provide multilingual support via machine translation software. 

What is an API?

APIs, or application programming interfaces, serve as a go-between two distinct systems. Essentially, they allow apps to ‘talk’ to each other.

In the case of a brand providing multilingual support, a language translation API enables customer service representatives to generate translations directly inside the platform they already utilize, such as their customer relationship management (CRM) tool or chat platform. By removing the need to switch between multiple technologies in order to service global customers, translation APIs save agents countless hours and don’t require organizations to come up with new processes that disrupt existing workflows.

For these reasons, APIs, especially turnkey integrations that are already developed for specific platforms like Salesforce or Zendesk, are the ideal solution for brands looking to seamlessly incorporate multilingual communication into their customer support ecosystems.

But as with any technology or software solution, not all APIs are created equal. As a result, it’s important for brands to know what qualities to look for when evaluating language translation APIs and integrations.

What Should a Translation API Include?

Adherence to REST Principles

REST (Representational State Transfer) principles refer to guidelines for creating APIs that help both the developer of the API and the end user to experience a seamless integration. There are several characteristics of APIs designed in accordance with REST principles, including a uniform interface (i.e., one in which all API requests look the same no matter where the request is coming from) as well as client-server separation to ensure applications on the client side are able to evolve separately from applications on the server side, without either having any dependency on each other.

When evaluating language translation APIs, ask potential providers if their APIs adhere to REST principles in order to make sure the integration into your system(s) will be truly seamless.

A Commitment to Security

Security is a major focus of today’s consumers—nearly 9 in 10 (86%) consider data privacy to be a “growing concern” while more than two-thirds (68%) of consumers are concerned about the level of data that businesses are collecting about them.

As a result, technology providers must be hyper-vigilant about the data they are and aren’t collecting from end customers, and any subsequent handling of that data. If you are planning to implement a language translation API, ask potential providers how they handle user-generated content containing sensitive data such as names, passwords, bank information, etc. Furthermore, to ensure truly secure machine translation, hold them to the standard of not only saying they are GDPR compliant, but demonstrating that this compliance has been verified by a third party through certifications such as ISO 27001.

The Ability to Filter Data

Developer-friendly APIs typically include the ability to easily filter through data. This in turn allows developers to easily locate the information they need to make the best use of the API.

Clear, Accurate Documentation

Your API provider should be able to supply documentation that serves as a guidebook to your developers. This documentation should be straightforward and comprehensive, containing everything from code examples, status and error handling, and how to authenticate requests. 

Finding the Right Language Translation API

Multilingual support has become a must-have for brands looking to service a global customer base. If you are interested in multilingual customer support that integrates seamlessly into your existing system(s), adheres to the highest standards of security, and makes communication easier for both agents and customers, then Language I/O’s AI-enabled technology is the right solution for you. Contact us to learn more about our machine translation software or request a demo to see the product in action.