Before we talk about GoTranscript, we need to outline how we assess these services.
Our series on transcription services apps evaluates the features, pricing options, competition, and overall value of using each service.
However, these are not hands-on reviews since evaluating a service based on a single performance would be highly subjective. Because this is a human-based solution, how good any transcription will be is based wholly on the efforts of a few individuals and their performance on a specific day.
All these companies aim to provide a level of service, but it's for their customers to evaluate if their work is appropriate.
What we also consider is how the company is considered not only by its customers but also by its employees. As critically, it is those who provide the service. More satisfied employees often do better work or go that extra mile, and conversely, unhappy ones don’t.
Where GoTranscript is slightly different from many of the larger companies in this sector is that they’re based in the UK, where it has developed a small but satisfied customer base.
Does GoTranscript have the magic recipe for delivering a high-quality and affordable service without exploiting those that provide the transcriptions?
- Want to try GoTranscript? Check out the website here (opens in new tab)
The price of transcription via GoTranscript is remarkably low, even by this cut-throat sector's standards.
The pricing model is more complicated than we’d want, but it is reasonably easy to follow. The starting point is how rapidly you need the transcription, with 6-12 hours being the fastest, followed by a business day, three and five days.
These cost £1.92, £1.00, £0.85 and £0.69 per minute for basic English transcription, which works out at $2.50, $1.30, $1.11 and $0.90 based on the Dollar exchange rate at the time of writing.
This can increase in cost if you want full verbatim transcribing, there are more than two speakers, audio quality is low or heavy accents are used, captions are required for video, timestamping and also if the language is other than English.
As a rule, a low-quality audio file or one that contains very challenging accents is charged at an extra $0.20 per minute, but the work is carried out by more experienced transcribers.
Reductions can be made for bulk orders, reducing the 5-day service to just £0.59 per minute for English transcription.
The GoTranscript website provides a cost quotation service, so cost surprises shouldn’t occur.
What’s interesting is that for those transcribing other than English, the price varies dramatically based on the language. Bengali, for example, costs the same as English, where Estonian is much more costly. They can also transcribe and translate as part of one process if that is a requirement.
But, there aren’t many services that can transcribe English, Albanian, Arabic, Azerbaijani, Bengali, Bosnian, Bulgarian, Catalan, Chinese, Croatian, Czech, Danish, Dutch, Estonian, Filipino, Finnish, French, Georgian, German, Greek, Hebrew, Hungarian, Icelandic, Indian, Indonesian, Italian, Japanese, Korean, Kurdish, Kyrgyz, Latvian, Lithuanian, Luxembourgish, Macedonian, Malay, Maltese, Nepali, Norwegian, Pashto, Persian (Dari), Persian (Farsi), Polish, Portuguese, Romanian, Russian, Serbian, Shona, Slovak, Slovenian, Somali, Spanish, Swahili, Swedish, Tajik, Thai, Turkish, Ukrainian, Urdu, Uzbek and Vietnamese.
While some competitors are offering cheaper solutions for those willing to wait up to a month for their transcribing, the quoted price for completely human transcription is excellent value, especially if you have a bulk requirement.
Alongside the run-of-the-mill transcription options, GoTranscipt also offers specialist transcription for Focus Group recordings, Legal, Medical, Academic and Research purposes that aren’t priced substantially differently from more ordinary work.
How it works
What’s fascinating about GoTranscript is that where most American services promote that they employ only those in that region, GoTranscript is upfront about employing 20,000 transcribers around the globe, all managed from its base in Scotland.
For English transcription, they state that most are based in the United Kingdom or the United States and are native English speakers.
According to the GoTranscript website, once the audio is uploaded via the website
it is then divided into sections for different transcriptionists to work on.
Accepted file formats include mp3, wav, wma, wmv, avi, flv, mpg, mpeg, mp4, m4a, m4v, mov, ogg, webm, aif, aiff, amr, 3gp, 3ga, mts and ovg. Alternatively, GoTranscript has mobile applications for both Android and Apple devices,
Once the work is completed for the whole file, it is reviewed for essential quality assurance before being passed on to a proofreading stage, and finally, it gets one more scan over to make sure it reaches the quoted accuracy of 99%.
Payment is by all major credit cards, debit cards, or PayPal, and the transcribed work is passed back to the customer via email.
According to GoTranscript, if the work exceeds the timeframe agreed, they will make a partial refund to you, although they don’t say how much.
We also noticed that if you have money deposited with the service for transcribing, you can’t get that back. So, it would be a poor plan to put a large amount on this account before being happy with the service being provided.
Those unhappy with the transcriptions can contact customer services within seven days of the receipt of the materials.
Initially, when we looked at GoTranscript, it appeared to have managed the incredible trick of delivering a cheap and reliable service with very high customer satisfaction without leaving a vast trail of unhappy ex-transcribers.
Sadly, a deeper look into TrustPilot and other reputational sites reveals that while the number of unhappy ex-transcribers is fewer than Rev and TranscribeMe, there are still plenty.
Based on the quoted pay for transcription, this is one of the better services, but it also has the same unfortunate issues with some transcribers not being paid for work and the company refusing to talk to them when they complain.
People have issues, and we can’t comment on the validity of these complaints, though there is a significant number, enough that it is hard to ignore.
We also managed to find several customers that weren’t happy with the service that they got or how GoTranscript dealt with their complaints. According to these reviewers, this is mainly an issue with languages other than English, where orders were late and inaccurately transcribed.
These things said, 81% of those who rated the service on Trustpilot rated them as Excellent, demonstrating that they can please customers that aren’t in the 9% who gave a Bad status.
What you get here is an inconsistent experience, where you can get lucky most of the time, or a horrible service that convinces you never to return.
One big difference between this and many other services is that this one does have a trial, allowing those curious about what to expect to try out GoTranscript before committing money and time to employ it for an important project.
- We've also highlighted the best transcription services