Austin Web Design Blog

3 Plug-ins for a Multilingual WordPress Site

There are many reasons why you may want to develop a multilingual WordPress site for yourself or a client. Currently 2/3’s of the world’s population speak a language other than English. Translating your site to more than one language helps to improve distribution of your content, better service your clients, and increase the effectiveness of your Search Engine Optimization. There are many different plug-ins that make this process easier, here are the top 3 plug-ins we’ve found to help you manage a multilingual site.


WPML is feature rich multilanguage plug-in available for WordPress. It’s easy to install and set-up for beginners, but also has many advanced features for experienced web developers versed in WordPress and PHP to create a full-fledged multilingual WordPress site. The plug-in installs with over 40 languages built-in and you can add your own language using the built-in languages editor.

You have the option of displaying your separate language sites in the same domain , in sub-domains or in completely separate domain names. Features include a powerful translation management tool that makes it easier to manage a team of translators. Or, if you don’t have someone on board to translate the material for you, WPML offers a professional translation service that hires a native translator to convert all of your content for a fee. Other features include, inline comment translation, making replying and moderating comments on your site in whichever language you’d like easy.

There are two options for purchasing WPML: Multilingual CMS and Multilingual Blog. The Multilingual CMS, which costs $79, is the complete solution for handling multiple languages, and many of the features mentioned in this article are only available on this version of WPML. If you’re simply running a blog and will want to translate it yourself, use the Multilingual Blog version, which cost $29.

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qTranslate is another plug-in that offers inline editing of multiple languages for your WordPress site. The plug-in allows you to translate your blog to another lanugage without changing the .mo files, for quick localization. If you don’t have your own translators, it has a built-in features to send your content to professional human translator or an automated translation option.

Changing which language you’re working on is similar to changing the WYSIWYG editor from Visual to HTML, each language has its own tab. qTranslate comes with many languages already built-in and claims that it can handle an infinite number of languages to present your site in whatever lnaguage you’d like.

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Multisite Language Switcher

Another option to manage different translations of your content would be to run WordPress Multisite, hosting each language as a separate installation of WordPress. WordPress has more information on creating a network of sites. The Multisite Language Switcher aides in connecting the different language versions of your posts, categories and tags. The plug-in even connects the admin area of each installation in one area, so you won’t have to log-in to multiple admin areas to change a translation. You can just click on the language you’d like to edit to make changes.

With the Multisite Language Switcher you won’t have to worry about making sure plug-ins work with the multilanguage plug-in you’re using, though they will need to work WordPress multisite to function properly in the admin area. It can get complicated managing content across several sites and some hosting solutions don’t allow you to install multisite on their servers.

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Tue, 21 Aug 2012 14:53

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