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Guide for Creating a Multi-Lingual Website

A multi-lingual site is a vital step to expand your website globally. When creating a multi-lingual website, it’s important to consider various factors if you plan to establish a website with a strong online presence or generate revenue through it. An adaptable or adjustable multi-language website is necessary to meet international standards. Localizing the website is crucial if you aim to create an equivalent version of your site in a foreign language.

Multi Lingual Website

The following are the various aspects to keep in mind while creating a multi-lingual website:

Utilize global templates for consistent branding

The content on your multi-lingual website should be consistent. This means that if a Chinese user visits your English site, they should see the same branding and design as the Chinese version. Branding, layout, and design are the main factors to consider when creating a multi-lingual website.

One of the plugins available in WordPress CM is Weglot, which aids in language translation. Weglot integrates with other plugins in WordPress, enabling you to have the same theme and design on your multi-language sites.

Having consistent content on your multi-lingual website helps with immediate recognition and branding of the site. It also simplifies future updates with UI or UX changes.

Language Switcher

The language switch option should be easily visible on the homepage and other pages of the site. Either place it in the header or footer of the page, as is commonly done. Always ensure that the language switcher is clear and use the language itself to refer to it. For example, use “Deutsch” instead of “German”. The key is to make visitors feel welcome, regardless of the language they speak.

Give Visitors the Privilege to Choose Their Preferred Language

Some multi-lingual websites automatically detect the language of the web browser to set it as the language for the user. This feature saves time for visitors, but it may not land them on the exact version of the website they desire. For instance, if an English-speaking person visits a country like “Spain,” the website automatically sets the language to “Spanish,” which can make it difficult for the visitor to understand. Therefore, if you choose to auto-detect locations, you should also add a language switcher to your website.

Living in a country doesn’t necessarily mean that a person can understand the local language. So, it’s always important for a multi-lingual website to offer visitors the opportunity to select their preferred language. To further enhance the user experience for your website visitors, consider remembering their language preferences so that the next time they visit the site, it loads in their preferred language automatically.

Website Content

Content is of utmost importance, as people visit your website not just for its design. Therefore, it is crucial to provide content that is valuable to both domestic and international visitors. The content should always meet localization and optimization standards.

You can achieve localization by hiring a professionally qualified translator for each of your target markets, as a single word can have different meanings in different languages. It’s important to understand the local language/dialects to reach a wider audience. Search engines find it difficult to detect words within Flash files, which is why websites with a lot of Flash are not SEO-friendly.

While optimizing your site, avoid directly translating all keywords and phrases through an English-language website, as visitors may use abbreviations, synonyms, or acronyms to search for products or services on a regional basis. It’s crucial to research the terms used by customers in your target market when searching for products or services.

Text Expansion

The length of text can vary from one language to another, so it’s important to keep that in mind when designing the layout of your multi-lingual website. For example, German and Italian are languages with more words, requiring approximately 30% more space compared to other languages. Therefore, it’s necessary to maintain a flexible design for your layout. When designing the layout, remember that the text can expand or contract both in width and length. Also, consider the character and line-height, as non-Latin texts are usually taller than Latin text.

Images and Icons

Images, icons, and other graphics bring life to your website. So, it’s important to use images and icons that have globally accepted meanings, as they are subjective and can be interpreted differently in various cultural contexts.

Color Symbolization

Choosing the right color scheme for your website is one of the crucial aspects of web design. It’s important to use culturally appropriate colors, as different cultures perceive and interpret colors differently. Blue is generally considered the safest and most universally accepted color choice for design, as it has many positive associations. Blue also symbolizes trust and authority. Always research the symbolism associated with any color before using it in the design of your multi-lingual website if you are unsure about cultural implications.

Website Navigation

Navigation plays a vital role in the website design process. Consistency and prominent features help visitors find your website. The navigation section should be intuitive when designing a website. For example, if you have a vertical menu bar on the left side of the English version of the website, it should be located on the right side of the website for nations that read from right to left, such as Arabic, or you can also use a horizontal menu bar to avoid these changes.

These are some factors to keep in mind when creating a Multi-Lingual Website. We hope this guide has been helpful. If you need further assistance, please use the comment section below or contact our support desk!

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