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How to quickly translate your email messages in Outlook?

Author: Amanda Li Last Modified: 2022-09-22

There are times when you receive a message in another language that you don’t understand. In this tutorial, we will talk about how to translate both incoming messages and outgoing messages before you send them.


Translate messages to any language with Translator in Outlook

To translate an incoming message with Translator, which converts the whole message from one language to a different language, you should first make sure you have the Translate button in your Outlook ribbon as the left screenshot shown. (The Translate option by default is enabled in Outlook ribbon.) If you do, you can skip the below 1 – 3 steps. Otherwise, follow all steps below.

1. On the Home tab, in the Add-ins group, click on the Get Add-ins icon. Alternatively, click on the Store icon in earlier versions. See screenshots:

2. In the pop-up ADD-INS page, search for “translator”, and then click on the Add button on the Translator for Outlook add-in.

3. Now the Add button on the Translator for Outlook card should become Get Started. Please close the page to go back to Outlook.

4. Double-click on the message you want to translate to open it in a Message window. Or, you can just select the message.

5. Click on Translate on the ribbon under the Home tab, and then select Translate Message.

6. The selected message are translated at once as shown below.

Note: The add-in might function differently depending on your Outlook version, and how you are accessing it. If you find it’s not translated into the language you want, you can either click on the language drop-down list to select the language you need as shown in the left picture below. Or click on the Translate button on the ribbon and select Translation Preferences, and then select the language as shown in the right picture below.

7. A notification will appear in the upper-left corner of the message telling you the messaged has been translated as shown below. You can click on Show Original to see the original message.

Note: With the Translator add-in, you can also use the right-clicking method to translate selected text by selecting a text, and then click or hover the pointer over Translate to see the translated results in the sub-menu as shown below.


Translate selected text in a message with right-clicking menu in Outlook

Microsoft Outlook offers a built-in translate feature that helps you quickly translate text in a message as shown below:

Note: The method is for the Outlook users who does not have the Translator add-in we talked above. If you have the add-in, you will not see the Translate option listed in this section. Please go ahead to learn how to translate outgoing messages before sending in Outlook.

1. Select the text you want Outlook to translate, right-click and select Translate from the drop-down menu.

2. The Translate Selected Text as shown below pops up informing you the selected text will be sent over the Internet, and asking if you want to proceed. Click on Yes.

3. A Research pane appears on the right side of the Outlook page. Please select the language the text is in and the language you want to translate the text into. You will see the translated result as shown below.


Translate outgoing messages before sending in Outlook

Let’s say you received a message in French, and you want to reply to the message in French too. Or you need to send a message to one of your colleagues who speaks a different language. You can do as follows:

1. Enter the content you want to translate in the email body, and then select the content.

2. Right click to bring up the content menu, select Translate, and then click on the translated result to replace the original text to the translated one as shown below.

If the above method does not work for you because you do not have Translator for Outlook add-in installed. You can add the add-in by following the instructions here. Or, you can follow the steps below:

In the message window that you have entered the text and want it to be translated, go to the Review tab. Select the text and then click on the Translate button and select Translate Selected Text. In the opened Research pane, select the language you want to translate the text into, and click on Insert to replace the original text.


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