WordPress is the most widely used Content Management System (CMS) in the world. Translation of content from the CMS can be accomplished quite easily by using a plugin that is directly integrated with your language service provider. The CMS Connect™ platform by Argo Translation extends that functionality to include consolidated billing and the ability to reuse previously created translations to save time and money on updated content.
We recently created an in-depth demo of the process you can see below. The video covers a number of topics including:
- the language switcher
- choosing languages
- string translation
- selecting pages/posts for translation
- sending content to your translation service provider
- translation of menus, tags, and categories
- translation of media, alt text, and image descriptions
- automatic file processing by the language service provider (LSP)
- return of translated content to WordPress
Here are a few things to consider before pursuing the translation of your WordPress site:
WordPress sites are handled by using an overarching theme that determines the look and feel of the site. Not all themes are compatible with this type of translation solution. We would suggest setting up a sandbox or test site and working with your LSP to execute a pseudo-translation of the site to determine what sections are automatically handled by the translation workflow. Pseudo-translation is a process where the translation management system inserts easily distinguishable text into the project (e.g. ALL CAPS). This allows the LSP and customer to scan through the site and see if any content isn’t picked up in the translation process. The developer or webmaster can then determine how to include the missed content in the translation project. An example of content that isn’t necessarily picked up automatically is text handled in Advanced Custom Fields (ACF). You can learn how to handle ACFs in this article.
Displaying the translated versions of websites is handled in a host of ways by different customers. Some sites automatically detect your location and provide the primary language for your country, others will prompt you to choose your language as you enter the website. Most sites just display a menu in the navigation that allows you to switch languages. We typically don’t suggest using flags as that may present issues with languages that are spoken in multiple countries and have noticeable variations (e.g. Spanish, French, Portuguese).
Most customers will have their subject matter experts or designated reviewers weigh in on the translation of the website. We would suggest you work out a timeline and process with your language service provider to accommodate this. You should cover how the translated content will be provided to the reviewers, how suggestions will be made and how those changes will be executed in both the website and translation memory. Please be sure and set some ground rules before proceeding with an internal review. Often times the reviewers will rewrite the underlying source content. This is not a good idea and will lead to the degradation of the translation memory and the potential for branding risk and legal risk. The marketing team works hard at getting the messaging for your site nailed down and no oversight on the changes could lead to disaster. We recently had a customer’s internal reviewers change the name of the company in their markups. The reviewer was a distributor and not even a part of the organization. Trust your reviewers but use your language service provider to validate the changes.
You might also consider listening to a recent episode of our podcast Translation Confidential on Web Development and Translation.
Using the CMS Connect™ platform and WordPress can lead to significant savings, decreased lead times and simpler management of translation tasks for your website.
Peter founded Argo Translation, originally based in Milwaukee, WI, in 1995. Prior to transferring his love of all things international and his savvy business expertise into Chicago’s premier translation agency, he attended the University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee, where he graduated with a major in finance and human resource management. After graduation he went on to become an Italian translator and project manager for an international medical equipment manufacturer and major airline.