Advancements in trade, capital mobility, and the digital revolution have led to increased globalization. This now calls for more interaction among people and businesses in different countries.
According to research, 70% of people worldwide don’t come from English-speaking countries. As an American, if you’re looking to expand your business, there’ll undoubtedly be a language barrier. For that reason, it’d be wise to build a multilingual website to accommodate all your customers across the globe. Here are some tips for doing so.
1. Use a translation plugin
Content management systems (CMS) are powerful tools that can help you manage your online content when building a multilingual site. If you intend to instantly translate content for your non-English users, consider installing a reliable WordPress translation plugin. In that regard, it’d be appropriate to select a sophisticated one which boasts of massive download numbers. Below is an outline of features and benefits: (2)
- Fully optimized multilingual search engine optimization: Your translated content is automatically listed on Google with relevant URLs, metadata, and keywords.
- Content detection: The interface automates the data in your pages, sidebars, headers, and widgets for translation.
- Quick set-up: It’s effortless to install it as it doesn’t require any coding. Also, the plugin integrates well with your website technology.
- Maximum compatibility: Plugins have the WP Engine advantage which works well with WordPress themes.
- Editing of content: It allows manual editing of your translations for clarity.
Along with a real team of professional translators to cross-check the automatic process, you’re guaranteed a seamless translation process.
2. Determine your objectives
It’d be best if you had a goal as to why you want to build a website in multiple languages. Business owners mostly do this to reach their consumers globally 24/7. As statistics show, 75% of consumers won’t make an online order if the website content isn’t in a language they understand. For this reason, your objective could be to provide your product descriptions in a variety of languages. In such a case, you could take the following key aspects into consideration: (3)
- Your target audience
- The native languages you need to add
- A budget
- Your technical team
- Market availability for your product
3. Have A Language Selection Menu
Generally, web readers are lazy, and they’d leave your site the moment they find it hard to navigate through it. On that account, make a note to build your website with consistent user experience in mind. For instance, you can have a simple layout of a drop-down language selection menu for online convenience. It’s usually placed in the upper right corner of the screen for people to quickly spot.
Having done that, decide how to present your selection menu by picking the right design. Have a record of all the languages available for users and choose a style to order them. Commonly, website developers use flags, but this creates confusion as some countries use similar languages. So, it’d be best to have your menu in the text format.
4. Design with translations in mind
Having different languages on your website isn’t enough. You have to devise ways to integrate changes on the general outlook when a user clicks the language switcher. For instance, text can be altered the moment you translate content from the default language. The length of the previous text and spacing won’t be the same. For example, Korean, Chinese, and Arabic characters require more vertical space. Therefore, to provide the correct visuals, you could leave some generous allowance on text boxes to ensure nothing is truncated after translation.
5. Be culture-sensitive
Culture is an essential factor when building a multilingual website. This is because you’re dealing with people with different beliefs and traditions. Your viewers in another country might have taboos and may find the images on your website upsetting. For instance, colors have different meanings. Red is a sign of danger in the western region; whereas, in Asian cultures, it’s a symbol of luck.
Try to ensure you appeal to the locals by using culture-friendly images, icons, and familiar brands. Have an optimized native design to give your users a real-time experience in their native languages. (4)
Having a multilingual website gets you more traffic. For that reason, the different viewers need to feel at home and easily maneuver on your platform. Therefore, consider integrating the above tips when building your multilingual website. Particularly, have the best plugin to create an engaging and optimal environment for your viewers.
- “Connect Internationally With Your e-Business,” Source: https://www.entrepreneur.com/article/234133
- “What Is WordPress Used For?,” Source: https://entrepreneursbreak.com/what-is-wordpress-used-for.html
- .”A World of Customers Is Waiting to Read Your Website in Their Language,” Source: https://www.entrepreneur.com/article/237082
“The Ultimate Website Localization Checklist,” Source: