Multilingual site: how to create it and why

A multilingual site is a web page where users can receive the same information in different languages, based on their needs and nationality.

Looking to grow your online audience? Having a multilingual site is right for you! A multilingual site will allow you to communicate effectively with all your customers, even foreign ones.

Not sure how to make a multilingual site? Continue reading, we'll explain step by step how to create a multilingual site that is easily accessible to users who speak different languages and who are located in different countries.

Multilingual site: how to create it and why
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How to create a multilingual site?

A multilingual website is a site that offers content in two or more languages in order to ensure an optimal experience for a wider target group of users. Offering your customers the possibility of translating the page they are visiting into their native language helps improve their browsing experience on the site and facilitates the understanding of the contents, increasing the possibility of achieving the business objective, i.e. the sale.

To translate your website it is not necessary to go manually to translate each content of the site, but you can rely on specific software without the need to possess technical and specific knowledge. In just a few steps, you will transform your site from monolingual to multilingual.

Choose your Translation Plugin

To create a multilingual site you can adopt different methods, the most effective is to rely on a translation plugins that uses online translation services to translate the contents of your website automatically.

Choosing the plugin is a fundamental step and it is important to choose quality software. There are several plugins on the market that offer the possibility of automatically translating your website into different languages, for example TranslatePress is one of the most popular multilingual plugins that allows you to translate your website pages automatically and manually directly from the front-end.

There are two different versions of TranslatePress:

  • Free version: allows you to add a second language to your website and automatically translate the contents using Google Translate.
  • Pro version: allows an automatic translation of the site into an unlimited number of languages also through the use of Deepl. Furthermore, it offers the possibility of installing specific packages such as the SEO package which allows you to optimize the website for search engines with respect to each specific language.

How to install your Plugin

After choosing which plugin to use for your website, you need to install it. For example, if you have chosen the TranslatePress plugin you can install and activate it just like any other WordPress plugin.

The steps to perform to install the TranslatePress plugin are:

  • Download the plugin zip file: if you decide to install the Pro version, after purchasing a license you will receive an email containing links to the purchased downloads and information to access your account. By logging into your account, you will then be able to download the plugin;
  • Activate TranslatePress: at the end of the installation, you have to click on “Activate Plugin” and it will be ready for use;
  • Locate TranslatePress in the Dashboard: after installing and activating the plugin, it will be easily found in the WordPress Dashboard of your website;
  • Activate the license: the last step is to activate the license. Activation takes place by entering the license number you received with the purchase of the plugin in the "License" tab and pressing "Activate license".

In case of installation of the Free version, it will simply be necessary to create a free account on the TranslatePress website and proceed with the download and activation of the plugin on the website without having to enter the license number.

Translate Your Site Automatically

After choosing and installing the translation plugin it's time to proceed with the configuration and start translate your website automatically.

Using the TranslatePress plugin, you can define the languages into which you want to translate your website (e.g. English, French, German, etc.). Subsequently, in the "Automatic Translation" section you can activate the automatic translation function of the site by connecting a translation service such as Google Translate or Deepl.

The connection with Google translate it is free and it is sufficient to enter the Google Translate API key to obtain an automatic translation of the website into the previously defined languages. If, however, you choose to use Deepl as a translation service it is necessary to obtain a license, since the translation service is paid.

By activating automatic translation, your site will already have become bilingual or multilingual! In fact, users who visit your site will be able to easily translate the page into the language they prefer and navigate in their native language. If you don't need an advanced translation, you can also stop here. You have already achieved your result. Of course, we recommend that you go about refining your translation and adding more features that can improve the user experience of your website.

Improve the user experience of your multilingual site

After translating the site automatically, you can improve the user experience of your multilingual site by adding more features. For example, TranslatePress Pro provides the ability to enter alabel in the site navigation menu or within your homepage which will allow the user to select their preferred language. By clicking on the label, in fact, the user can translate the page into the language of his choice.

Through TranslatePress Pro, moreover, you will be able to create real ones user paths in his native language: for example, in the English version of the site you can show specific pages that are not present in the Italian version.

Finally, another feature that TranslatePress Pro provides is the detection of the language used by the user. This means that if the site has an Italian and an English version, when an English-speaking user accesses the site, the website will offer the user to translate the content into his native language. The detection of the user's language is carried out via the IP address or via the language set on his browser.

All these features provided by the plugin allow you to improve the user experience of the site also in the translated versions. It is important that when a user accesses your website, he can navigate best both in the site's native language and in secondary languages.

Perfect Site Translation

By translating the site automatically through the use of translation services, it is normal that the translation will not be perfect. To improve the translation you can manually intervene in the contents of your website by defining a more precise translation and in line with the culture of the country of reference.

Manual translation is possible both with the free version of the TranslatePress plugin and with the Pro version, but with the Pro version you can act directly as a front-end on each page of your site. Furthermore, using the Pro version you will be able to access additional packages such as the one dedicated to Advanced multilingual SEO which allows you to optimize content from an SEO perspective in all the languages you define.

Why is a multilingual site important?

A website is the main tool with which the company presents itself to consumers from all over the world. When browsing, users prefer to read a site written in their native language, especially when they want to make a purchase. If your business hits a target of different nationalities, creating a multilingual site is the right strategy to implement.

A site translated into multiple languages allows you to reach a wider audience: many studies show that users are more inclined to buy on a website that speaks their language and, in general, spend much more time on web pages written in their native language.

Start translating your site into multiple languages

In conclusion, translating your website into multiple languages will allow you to attract more customers, not only from your country, but from all over the world!

The steps to create a multilingual site are simple and fast, there are so many plugins on the market and TranslatePress is one of the best. You just have to put our advice into practice independently to expand the target of your company, or contact us and we will help you make your site multilingual.

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