Translating Your Website: A Guide to Maximizing Traffic and Sales
It’s no secret that we all prefer to read websites in our native language. However, many websites assume that adding content in English will suffice for the entire world. In reality, only around 360 million people out of the approximately 7.5 billion in the world consider English their native language. This means that more than 7 billion people would rather read your website in a language other than English. The solution? Translating your website. But how can you ensure that you maximize your traffic and sales? Below, we’ll go through the main methods to incorporate into your strategy when you translate your website.
Choosing the Right Language to Translate Into
The first thing to consider is which languages you want to translate your content into. An initial look at the languages with the most number of internet users will give you an idea of which ones might make sense. However, blindly translating into all of the languages in the top 20 is not practical. It will be incredibly expensive to translate your website into so many languages, and it will also be costly in terms of both money and time to maintain all of these languages. Instead, find out where your traffic is coming from. One of the best ways to do this is by using Google Analytics to analyze your traffic. Through Google Analytics, you can see which countries are searching for your website. From this, you can make intelligent estimations about which languages to translate into.
Choosing the Right People to Translate Your Website
One of the most important decisions when making your website multilingual is deciding who will actually translate your website. It can be tempting to use machine translation solutions like Google Translate, but this is not recommended. Machine translations are not completely accurate and can lead to basic mistakes that make your website appear unprofessional. Instead, rely on humans to ensure that your translations are as accurate as possible. A professional translator with a degree in the field will not only give you correct translations but will also be able to retain the same sentiment as in the original language. Furthermore, professional translators will be able to navigate the jargon that might be common within your industry.
Use a Plugin to Make Your Website Multilingual
WordPress does not come with a built-in capacity to translate websites. Therefore, you will need to use a plugin to add content in other languages to your website. The most popular plugin is WPML, which is installed on more than 700,000 websites. You can use WPML to translate all aspects of your website, including posts/pages, images, URLs, theme texts, and much more. Moreover, it has recently revamped its String Translation to reduce page load times by more than 50%, meaning it will not impact your site’s performance. WPML’s Translation Management allows you to decide how you want your content translated. You can either do it yourself, assign it to an individual translator, or hire one of the hundreds of professional services that are integrated with WPML.
Localize Your Website
To create a multilingual website that increases your sales, you will need to do more than simply translate your website. You will need to optimize your multilingual SEO to ensure you rank highly on Google’s search pages. In addition to your SEO, you will also need to ensure your customers feel as if they are accessing a website from their own country. This includes offering multiple currencies and hiding shipping classes at the point of purchase. Finally, you will also need to be aware of the different dialects in a language.
When it comes to translating your business website, first answer a few questions about how you want to approach it. What languages are you translating into, who will translate it, what plugin will you use? By following these key steps, you will have an e-commerce website with more sales than ever before around the world.