What Are The Most Difficult Product Categories to Translate For?

Sep 15, 2023



It comes as no surprise that products on Amazon are all different – with varying degrees of difficulty in translation and localization. In this article, we round up some of the toughest categories to translate for — but rest assured, YLT Translations knows their way around the most difficult product categories to translate for.

Essentially, products that are very technical in nature, supplements, adult products, and health-related products with health claims are difficult product categories to translate for.

As you know, Amazon is strict when it comes to claims — and disease names are absolutely prohibited on the platform — so translating medical products can be quite complex.

Technical products can be tough as well, because oftentimes the technical jargon is difficult to translate — especially into languages such as German, where the resulting word count is higher than in English, added a layer of complexity to a seller’s infographics and A+. Furthermore, brand names are a touchy subject with Amazon, so opportunities for co-branding your tech product with the giants like Samsung, Lenovo, Apple, and so forth are pretty much lost.

Supplements are quite difficult; different countries have different preferences when it comes to the supplement industry, and food and drug laws must be taken into consideration before making any claims. Who knows, your product might not even be allowed to be listed in certain countries — so a certain amount of due diligence is necessary.

Adult products contain keywords that are a big no-no in Amazon, so it’s necessary to employ a certain amount of creativity to navigate this industry in a compliant and yet still marketable way.

But this is why the YLT Team is so rigorously trained; each of the translators understand the complexities of language and culture. That’s how they’re able to translate accurately and effectively.. Stay tuned to learn more about how YLT Translations can help navigate these challenges.

Why accurate translations are crucial, especially in the difficult product categories to translate for:

On one hand, accurate understanding is crucial. When you’re planning to expand your business globally, it’s crucial to cultivate trust among your target consumers — so your product must be marketed in a clear and understandable way.

Here are a few other reasons why it’s important to finesse your way around the difficult product categories to translate for:

Consumer Trust

Misleading or incorrect translations can erode consumer trust. If a customer receives a product that doesn’t match the description due to a translation error, they’re less likely to buy from you again and may leave negative reviews, which nobody likes.

Regulatory Compliance

Certain categories of products, especially those related to health, medicine, or supplements, have strict regulations concerning how they can be described and marketed. Failure to accurately translate these details can lead to legal issues and potential removal of the product listing. Definitely not a good first step when selling in a new country for the first time.

Conversion Rates

An accurate translation helps potential buyers understand exactly what they’re getting, improving the likelihood of them making a purchase. Have you ever come across a listing whose content is vague or incomprehensible? You’re less likely to Add to Cart, aren’t you? It’s the same across the board. If you’re trying to sell your product in a new country, you’ll want clear and comprehensible translations to manage customer expectations better, and impact your conversion rates.

Search Visibility

Keywords play a significant role in how products are discovered on Amazon. Incorrect translations may result in inappropriate or ineffective keywords, making it difficult for users to find the product, thereby reducing its visibility and potential sales. (Good thing YLT Translations generates new keywords with every new market a product may enter. Check out this blog on Keyword Localization and SEO and why it’s so important.)

International Market Penetration

Cultural nuances and idioms need to be considered to make the product appealing to a global audience. It’s so important to employ the language your customers speak — we’re not just talking about German, French, Spanish, or Italian; we’re talking about the idiomatic expressions and colloquialisms your customers are using.

If you’re curious about what Jana has to say about international expansion in e-commerce, check out this blog, where she gets into some of the best practices.

Complexity and Keyword Constraints

Different categories like adult products, supplements, or health-related products often have unique sets of keywords that are crucial for product discovery. Many of these keywords might be sensitive or even banned by Amazon, adding an extra layer of complexity to the translation process. Accurate translation in these cases is not just about language but also about understanding platform-specific rules and constraints. Good thing YLT Translations’ team is well-versed in what’s allowed in their specific Amazon market. (Because we adhere to the Localization Triumvirate, that’s why.)

Customer Experience

Accurate translations contribute to a smoother customer journey by providing clear information on product usage, installation, benefits, and risks, among other things. This can result in higher customer satisfaction and repeat business. Now, it might be a good idea to expand your translation and localization efforts to your customer service systems in every target country — Jana explains how in this blog.

Why technical products are difficult product categories to translate for

Navigating the intricacies of translating technical products can be quite a challenge. The complexity of technical terminology and the need for precise accuracy make it one of the most difficult types of products to translate.

The stakes are high in areas like automotive, mobile and tech, electronics, surveillance, and more. It’s so important that the resulting translation conveys the intended meaning without causing confusion or offense. Furthermore, remember that co-branding with other brands in the category is generally frowned upon — or treated with kid gloves — so it’s absolutely necessary for the translator handling your tech product to be fully aware of the terms and conditions governing your product.

It requires a deep understanding of both the source and target languages to effectively translate technical products. Also, outstanding content is a good idea, to establish your brand in spite of the challenges you’ll face with the prohibited keywords and brand names.

Why supplements are difficult product categories to translate for

Translating supplement product listings on Amazon is a complex task that demands more than just linguistic skill. Supplements often feature specialized terms describing chemical compounds, ingredients, and nutritional values, all of which must be impeccably translated to ensure consumer safety and understanding. Additionally, supplements carry the added complexity of requiring strict adherence to both Amazon’s terms of service, and varying international regulations regarding health claims. A poorly translated listing could not only make unpermitted health claims but could also inadvertently misguide a consumer on dosages and usage, posing significant health risks. So, best case scenario, Amazon slaps your wrist; worst case scenario, your customers are harmed because of shoddy translating.

The intricacy of the task is amplified by the keywords surrounding the supplements category. While strategic keyword inclusion is standard for any product listing, supplements are some of the most difficult product categories to translate for due to sensitive or prohibited terms. Translators must navigate these constraints skillfully, ensuring visibility without running afoul of platform-specific rules or broader regulations.

In short, translating supplement listings for Amazon is not merely a matter of converting text from one language to another. It’s an intricate endeavor requiring a nuanced understanding of health-related terminology, regulatory compliance, and the specific limitations imposed by the platform. Errors in this context can lead to serious consequences, ranging from legal issues to potential harm to consumers.

Thank goodness YLT has translated many supplements – deftly and capably. It’s not a task for a beginner translator, that’s for sure.

Why adult products are difficult product categories to translate for

Translating adult product listings for Amazon is a task that can’t be limited to mere language conversion. Adult products often involve explicit and sensitive content, which must be translated with the utmost accuracy and cultural awareness, so you don’t inadvertently offend your target audience – or make yourself into a laughing stock, which is pretty common for sellers expanding their adult products to other markets through amateur translations. It’s essential to ensure that the product details are conveyed appropriately, without causing offense or misunderstanding. Moreover, Amazon has stringent guidelines regarding the marketing and description of adult products, making it imperative that the translation not only conveys the intended message but also adheres to platform-specific rules and regulations.

Adding to the complexity is the need to strategically implement keywords. Given the explicit nature of adult products, many relevant keywords may be sensitive or even prohibited altogether. Translators have the intricate task of ensuring the product’s visibility in search results while navigating around these restrictions, which may differ from one market to another. This is particularly important as improper keyword usage can not only impact the product’s visibility but also risk its removal from Amazon

Why health-related products with health claims are difficult product categories to translate for

Translating health-related products with health claims on Amazon is a multifaceted task requiring precision, regulatory compliance, and a thorough understanding of medical terminology. Items such as ointments, creams, medical supplies, and over-the-counter medications often come with specific claims regarding their efficacy, dosage, and potential benefits. It’s so important that this information is meticulously translated, to avoid any risk of misinformation that could endanger consumer health.

Also, consider that the health and medical product categories have a critical need to conform to Amazon’s guidelines for health-related products, as well as to the healthcare regulations that differ from one country to another. A mistranslation or a misunderstood health claim could lead to the product being delisted, or worse, to legal consequences. Yikes. As if selling internationally wasn’t hard enough.

The complexity deepens when considering the need for search engine optimization on Amazon’s platform. Keywords related to healthcare and medication can be particularly sensitive and are often subject to specific restrictions. Translators must exercise caution in selecting and using these terms to ensure that they are not only effective for search optimization but also compliant with platform and regulatory guidelines. The goal is to maintain visibility without compromising on accuracy or legality, a challenging balance that necessitates a thorough understanding of Amazons terms and conditions — as well as an awareness of what marketing and content works and what doesn’t in each country for this particular product category.

The translation of health-related products with health claims on Amazon is most definitely not a straightforward endeavor. It’s a task rife with linguistic, regulatory, and platform-specific complexities. That’s why health-related products with health claims are one of the most challenging yet critical product categories to translate for on the e-commerce platform.

How YLT Translations can help

We asked our team how they navigate their way around these sensitive categories.

Here’s some of what they said:

  1. Put aside your personal biases, and translate the content as professionally as possible
  2. Employ creativity to market the product while sidestepping restrictions and keyword issues

In short: have fun with it. You should try to “add your own input and turn the message around into something that’s acceptable or normalized in your locale” (to quote one of our translators!).

You see, our translators understand Amazon’s terms and conditions, even around sensitive topics that may disagree with their value systems, pose problems with terms of service or keywords, or even employ marketing language that wouldn’t convert in their target location. Given that they’re native speakers, they know what their countrymen need to hear about a product, and are able to massage the content in such a way that it converts an audience.

That’s why many sellers in the most difficult product categories to translate for come to us for that careful approach.


In summary, translating products for Amazon can be an intricate endeavor fraught with challenges, especially in specific categories like technical products, supplements, adult items, and health-related goods with medical claims. These categories not only require a precise understanding of language but also necessitate a nuanced grasp of regulations, consumer trust, and even platform-specific rules and restrictions.

However, if you’re a seller in these complex categories, don’t worry; you’re in good hands with YLT Translations. Our team is rigorously trained to understand both the language and the rules that govern these sensitive topics on Amazon. Armed with this expertise, we offer you not just word-for-word translation, but a comprehensive localization strategy that enhances customer trust, maintains regulatory compliance, and ultimately drives conversions. With YLT Translations, you can confidently navigate the intricate labyrinth of Amazon’s global marketplace, even in the most difficult product categories to translate for.

Curious if your product will fare well in another country? Remove the guesswork with YLT’s AMOR report!