Translate Wordpress site

How to translate my WordPress site? The easy way!

Whether you want to translate a WordPress site for your visitors to read your content in their native language or target new markets if your WordPress is business oriented. You have to choose the solution that fits your needs the best.

If you are reading this article in another language than English, it has been automatically translated by our WordPress Multilingual Plugin.

I came through this situation many times in the past and as nothing existing was what I needed, I decided to create my own. I’m gonna elaborate about the situation that everybody trying to translate their WordPress site is facing and how I solved it.

Define your needs beforehand

First situation: I run a personal WordPress blog or portfolio and just want my readers to read in their language.

Javascript solutions are easy to install and translate your page on the fly, as an example we all have in mind the Google Translate website widget which is now deprecated. The issue with this solution is that search engines won’t index your translated content but as you don’t need to expand your business, this could be the solution you need. Noticed how I said “could”? We will get to it right after.

But wait…how can you explain that Uber, Fiverr, and other big startups use Javascript translation? Well the answer is in the question, from a customer perspective we already have these names in mind and they are services/products that we use often. Do they need translation to reach new customers? No!

Second situation: I run a company WordPress blog to showcase my services or products (i.e Woocommerce).

As you understood, the first solution doesn’t apply to this situation as you want your products to be sold in the foreign markets you target. So you will have to go for the old way.

We need to distinguish 2 different terms first, make WordPress multilingual and translate WordPress. The first one is about making your WordPress translatable while the second is about actually translating your content.

Make my WordPress translatable

By default, WordPress is not multilingual ready. Therefore it uses the Gettext function that allows us to translate plugins, themes (for those which are multilingual ready), admin,…In this case, it will imply to translate your WordPress “static” content using .po files that you can translate using PoEdit. But this won’t make your pages translatable ready. For this you will need a multilingual plugin such as WPML, Polylang, MultilingualPress, etc…

Why do I mention them together? Because except few points, the process is the same and the efforts to translate your content as well. This means they will require you to translate a new page for each language, translate your content, verify the translated result and so on…When it comes to an update of your source content, you will have to arrange your content for each one of your language. Not mentioning the fact that you will to chase where to translate your menus, your widgets, etc…

Few numbers to understand the situation. Your WordPress site is in English and has 40 pages, you want to translate it in 2 languages: French and Spanish.

Let’s say you spend 15-20 min per page, create it, translate the content, check it, etc…40 x 2 x 20 = 1600 min = 26,7 hrs.

This would take you more than a day to translate your content in 2 languages, and spend the same time again if you want to do changes to your content.

Moreover, taking WPML as an example, do you really want to also spend additional time to install, manage and update that many plugins:

wpml plugins

Translate the content of my WordPress site

Automatic translation

Not gonna go deep about the quality but more about the process. Using automatic translation would require you to copy and paste each one of your paragraphs into an automatic translator¬† such as Google, Bing, Yandex, etc…, copy the translated content and paste it into your page.

Professional translation

Even if quality is better than automatic translation, the process remains the same unless you are using an API pushing your content to a professional translation services marketplace.

My opinion about this complicated and time consuming process

When you taking time and efforts on something, you want them to pay off. That’s why even if one would just want his readers to read his content in their native language, think about the traffic you are missing compared to the other solution. So in my opinion, one would always aim to increase his traffic, because traffic is money, traffic is recognition, traffic is spreading our message to others, and because at the end what’s the point taking time and efforts into a WordPress site that nobody would read.

What if I’m telling you that I have been through all of this, spent endless time translating my content, updating changes, etc…At the end, any solution was what I really needed, a fast, synchronized and easy way to translate my WordPress site(s).

Translating your WordPress site: the easy way!

We got all of this together and built the solution that wouldn’t let you choose between a Javascript solution or never ending plugin process, automatic or professional translation. We took all the pros, put the cons on the side and made it happen by building the Scrybs Multilingual Plugin.

All of your WordPress translations in one Dashboard

Forget having to chase where to translate this widget, this string, etc…having to check if your themes or plugins are multilingual ready. Scrybs Multilingual Plugin parse each one of your page to extract the content and push it to your Scrybs translations cloud without having to copy and paste anything.

Translate WordPress

Remember the previous calculation? 26,7 hrs now reduced to 0 sec combining content extraction and automatic translation.

Human Powered Machine Translation

Automatic translation is a very controversial topic, is the quality good enough, which supplier is the best, and so on…That’s why we decided that people wouldn’t have to choose between manual or automatic, but use automatic translation as an help to translate your content faster, we call it Human Powered Machine Translation (yes we came up with it).

Professional translators use automatic translation to help them translating small or large content faster. We made it available for all of your content.

WordPress Performance

Many plugins in WordPress repository or private plugins will drastically slow down your load time, why? If you take a look at WPML code you will see that it’s a mess…Let’s do some tests with Scrybs Multilingual Plugin. Let’s have a look at some speed tests using PingDom that I recommend you.

English homepage:

English WordPress Homepage

French homepage:

French WordPress Homepage

As you can see, the load time is even faster than your source language. How is this possible? We internally developed many ways of caching and translated content memory.

Track my the progress of my WordPress translations

During the process of translating my WordPress site, I was struggling to find where I was missing translations, I had to browse every page in every language to make sure I wasn’t missing anything.

Translate WordPress Progress

We developed a way for you to track where you are missing translations as well as a search bar allowing you to look for a source or translated sentence.

More than one WordPress site at the same time

Many of you are marketers and own more than one website, but what if you want to translate more than one website at the same time? The “old way” would require you to install 14 different plugins, hours and hours to translate your content and then manage it. Our powerful translations cloud makes it easy to manage your translations across your websites.

Wordpress Sites

WordPress SEO Ready

As you remember in the “old way”, this was a major point to go for one or the other. Guess what, you don’t have to choose anymore. Your translated content is fully indexed by search engines, and every important SEO point is left behind: locale, alternative URLs, Metas (Title, descriptions,…), and even translated URLs remotely managed in your Scrybs cloud.

Scrybs Translated URL

Will give you:

Translated WordPress URL

But also filter all your SEO elements in your translation Dashboard.

Wordpress SEO Filter

Plugins & Themes Compatibility

Scrybs WP Multilingual Plugin translate your content on the output. What does it mean? It means that Scrybs is extracting all of your content once the WordPress page is generated including all your plugins and your HTML theme render. This way you don’t have to worry about having to find multilingual ready plugins or themes. In addition to that, yes it will work with your non multilingual ready WordPress plugin or theme and so make them multilingual without having anything to do!

Dynamic

I have always been scared to update my original content knowing that I will have to update for each one of my languages, same thing for new posts/pages. As mentioned above, Scrybs Multilingual & Translation Plugin captures your content in real time, compare it with the version in cache and update your translated content if the source content is new or has been changed. This allowing you to only focus on your source content without having to worry about creating/updating your pages.

No Monthly billing

It’s unlikely that you will often change your translated content so why would you have to pay monthly for something static? We know that and we made sure of it with a unique pricing for anyone of your websites.

Conclusion

Having your WordPress site translated is a wide topic. I ironically explained you what you would have to go through if you choose the “old way” and how we solved the problem building our own plugin. The ultimate solution not only to translate a WordPress site but also making it fully multilingual. If you are ready to give a try to a different approach of WordPress translation, you can find our WordPress Multilingual Plugin and let us know what you think about it in comments.

Translation doesn’t have to be long and boring after all, happy translation!

Other posts you might like

Best Country Flag Icons If you were thinking of localizing your website, you would be wondering what were the best country flag icons to use.
Language Switcher Best Practices If you have a site with multilingual content, you would possibly consider using redirects based on the language chosen on a user's browser.
Adapting a Marketing Strategy for Multilingual Content Given the worldwide reach of the internet, digital marketing will have to inevitably be adapted for multilingual content. In fact, according to current
Javascript Translation and SEO When it comes to WordPress translation, there have been a lot of advancements in the technology and systems behind it over the past few years. These have aimed to make the translation process as effortless and efficient...
Other posts you might enjoy:
Chris Engelhard
c.engelhard@seowebsolutions.nl