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Greetings and welcome to this exciting journey of creating a multilingual website in WordPress! In today’s interconnected world, having a website that speaks the language of your global audience is paramount. Whether you’re an entrepreneur looking to expand your business, a blogger aiming to reach an international readership, or simply someone passionate about sharing your ideas with the world, creating a multilingual website is a fantastic way to connect with people from different cultures and backgrounds.
Why have a Multilingual Website?
Now, you may be wondering: why make a multilingual website when everyone speaks and understands English? While it is true that English is a language that many people can understand, adopting multilingualism allows you to reach a wider audience and forge stronger connections.
Story Time: Danny’s Diner
Meet Danny, a talented chef who has recently opened a cozy little diner called “Danny’s Diner” in a charming neighborhood. Initially, Danny’s menu and website were only available in English, limiting his customer base to English-speaking locals.
One day, a group of tourists from a non-English speaking country stumbled upon Danny’s Diner. They were craving some authentic local cuisine and, being unable to understand the menu, were hesitant to step inside. In that critical moment, Danny realized the importance of going multilingual.
He decided to create a multilingual website, offering translations in the language spoken by the majority of tourists in his area. This small change made a huge impact! Word quickly spread among the local community as well, attracting more visitors and boosting Danny’s business significantly.
The WordPress Solution
Now that you understand the benefits of going multilingual, let’s delve into how you can achieve this using WordPress, the popular and user-friendly content management system (CMS). WordPress offers a variety of plugins that make the process of creating a multilingual website seamless and efficient.
Selecting a Language Plugin
The first step in creating your multilingual website is choosing a suitable language plugin. Two popular options are WPML (WordPress Multilingual Plugin) and Polylang. Both plugins provide excellent features and are widely recommended by the WordPress community.
WPML is a powerful and comprehensive plugin that offers advanced translation management features. It allows you to translate posts, pages, custom post types, menus, and even themes and plugins. WPML is a premium plugin with a range of pricing options, depending on the complexity of your website.
Polylang, on the other hand, is a free multilingual plugin that offers a user-friendly interface. It allows you to translate posts, pages, categories, menus, widgets, and more. Although Polylang may not have as many advanced features as WPML, it is a fantastic option for smaller websites or those on a budget.
Translating Content with WPML
If you’ve chosen to use WPML, here’s a brief overview of how you can translate your content. Once you’ve installed and activated the plugin, you can begin translating your posts and pages by accessing the Translation Management module. Within this module, you’ll find tools to create new translations, manage translators, and control the translation status of your content.
To translate individual posts or pages, you can click on the “+” icon next to each item in the WPML Translation Dashboard. This will create a new translation job, allowing you to input the translated content manually or send it to a translator.
For a more efficient translation process, WPML also supports integration with translation services like Gengo and Cloudwords. These services enable you to streamline the translation workflow, making it faster and more convenient.
Translating Content with Polylang
If Polylang is your chosen language plugin, let’s explore how you can translate your content using this user-friendly tool. After installing and activating the plugin, you can access the Languages module in your WordPress dashboard to set up the languages you want to translate your website into.
To translate individual posts or pages, simply edit the content and switch to the desired language using the language switcher provided by Polylang. This will create a new language version of your content, allowing you to input the translated text directly.
Congratulations! You have successfully embarked on the journey of creating a multilingual website in WordPress.
Before concluding, it is important to keep in mind that maintaining a multilingual website requires regular updates and maintenance. As your website grows, you may need to enlist the help of professional translators to ensure accurate and culturally sound translations. In addition, it is crucial to continuously monitor user feedback and adapt your website accordingly.
Ready to open your website’s doors to the world? Start building your multilingual WordPress website today and harness the power of global connectivity!