Multilingual and International Website Best Practices
Once you’ve configured your multilingual website, you’re almost there. To finish things off, follow a few best practices.
Note the Difference Between Multilingual and Multi-Country
First and foremost, designing a multilingual website is not the same thing as designing a multi-country website. For example, Clarity designed a multilingual website for Disney that could translate between English and Spanish, but was geared toward an American audience. This is the case for French/English websites in Canada, too. That means you may not need to incorporate many design distinctions between the two audiences, who live in the same geographic region and are culturally similar. In fact, in most cases, it’s best that you don’t. Similarly, always refer to translated pages in your navigation by language name and not by using codes like flags, since the language may be spoken in multiple countries.
Localize Content for Easy Translation
First and foremost, designing a multilingual website is not the same thing as designing a multi-country website.
You’ll save yourself a huge headache if you localize all of your content. This means that as you update or add content, it will be dynamically updated on the translation pages. Users find it very frustrating to navigate to a new page on the website only to find that it isn’t translated. Make sure everyone who manages your website is on board with this and understands how to successfully change or add content to the website.
Make Sure Your Website Navigation is Impeccable
As stated in a previous article, allow users to easily toggle between languages. Provide this feature on every page, and state each name in its own respective language. Additionally, make sure to shift your navigation bar in the event of right to left languages. If you’re ready to get started on multilingual website development, speak to Clarity today.