Are you looking for a way to reach a wider audience with your WordPress website? One of the easiest ways to achieve this is to translate its content into different languages. Translating a WordPress theme can be a difficult task, but if you know how to do it correctly, it won’t take long and you will soon have a multi-lingual website. In this article, we will provide a step-by-step guide on how to translate a WordPress theme into different languages.
1. Unpacking the Basics of Translate a WordPress Theme
If you’ve recently found yourself wanting to create a multilingual website, there are a few important steps. Fortunately, WordPress makes the process much simpler, allowing you to quickly and easily extend your website’s reach! But first, it’s worth unboxing the basics of translating a WordPress theme.
Words and phrases will need to be carefully adapted for each language, so that everything presented is culturally and contextually accurate. This first step can seem daunting, but don’t worry – you’ll have access to some major tools. The 2 key translational elements for any WordPress theme are:
- POEdit – This is the software which allows you to edit code and customize all the text that’s found in plugins and themes.
- Gettext – This library handles translations and dynamic content, present in plugins and themes. It holds all of the default text, ensuring they are ready to be customized and translated to relevant languages.
2. Setting Up Your Translate Environment
Once you have familiarised yourself with the language, it’s time to start setting up your environment to begin translate Here’s what you should consider to make sure you have the right resources available:
- CAT tools: computer-assisted translation tools, such as Memsource and Trados, enable you to save time by automating certain processes, such as segment alignment.
- Reference materials: dictionaries, industry-specific glossaries, and similar resources will make sure that you’re able to look up any words or phrases that are unfamiliar to you.
- Quality assurance tools: these will help you to check that you are producing accurate translations that meet the requirements of your clients.
It’s essential to have everything properly set up at the start if you want your translations to be the best they can be. By investing the time in collecting and setting up the right materials and tools, you will be well on your way towards becoming a successful translator.
3. Crafting a New Language Locale
Choosing the Language
Creating a new language locale starts with the first, most basic step: Choosing the language. Choosing the right language is the foundation of your new language locale. With the internet, it’s easier than ever to research and explore an amazing array of languages. Consider these factors when deciding:
- Do you want a related language from your existing language group, or a completely different language?
- Which language complements the regional or cultural identity of your target audience?
- What language does the majority of your target audience prefer?
- What language has applications in the areas you want to focus on?
Now that you’ve chosen your language, you’re ready for the next step: Identifying the Standards and Guidelines. Language locale standards are a set of rules ensuring that the regional language is understood clearly, correctly and consistently. It helps create a consistent language format, within a web experience and throughout localized content. It will also make sure that the language follows the same standards throughout all your global campaign.
4. Publishing a Multilingual WordPress Theme
Are you considering developing a WordPress theme that supports multiple languages? That’s a great idea! Just keep in mind that there is a lot more to creating a multilingual website than just displaying text in different languages. You need to make sure that your theme is properly optimized for localization.
First off, you need to make sure that your theme is ready for translation. Use the WordPress’ provided language files API to ensure that your theme can be localized. You also need to ensure that all files and directories are properly named and structured. It’s also important to make sure that you are able to style your texts in the user’s chosen language. Here are some of the steps you should take:
- Make sure all text strings are ready for translation
- Use language files for various languages
- Ensure files and directories are named and structured properly
- Include RTL support
- Include language selector menu
- Always test the theme in each language
Once you’ve taken all these steps, you can start publishing your multilingual WordPress theme to the marketplace. Lots of users need themes that support their language – make sure you meet their needs and provide an excellent experience! Through translating your WordPress theme into different languages, you can now connect with a variety of people around the world, while standing out from the sea of English-only websites. Show them you care and take your endeavors to the international level. Find a language service provider, familiarize yourself with the best practices for localization, and start your journey now!
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