How to Create a Multilingual Site with WordPress
You need to create a multilingual site with WordPress and you’re wondering which way to go to make your project a success. You are currently reading the right article! If you don’t know it yet, WordPress does not offer this feature by default.
Don’t worry, creating a multilingual site with WordPress is totally possible. That said, there are many options so let’s start demystifying it now!
Translation of texts or contexts?
After attending the WordPress and Internationalization conference at the WordCamp in Montreal in 2011, I realized that translation could be established at the text level, but also according to context. This may sound odd, but it is crucial for the choice of the solution.
The method of translating texts means that everything in one language is simply translated into the other languages. The site is therefore identical in all languages in terms of its content. Only the display language is different.
The context-specific translation method takes into account a variation of content by language, but also by localization.
By default, WordPress allows the management of only one language per website. That said, several solutions have been put in place to allow a site containing several languages. Here they are:
- Creation of a network of websites (multi-site environment);
- Use of a language management extension in a simple installation;
- A combination of extension and network of websites.
Note that none of these solutions are the best or to be forbidden. Each solution has its advantages and disadvantages. It all depends of course on what your website has to accomplish as tasks!
The best way to make the right choice is to properly analyze your needs and clearly list the features required for your project. With this list in hand, it will be much easier to eliminate solutions that do not meet the criteria and to choose the one that will allow you to realize a project at the height of your ambitions!