If you want your website to connect and engage with people around the globe, then translating your content is a must. However, for many, translating their website into another language is a daunting task, especially for those with little to no language skills. Luckily, the multilingual tool Weglot enables you to translate your WordPress website automatically and/or manually, helping you to reach potential customers in any language.
In this article, we look in-depth at what the free WordPress plugin Weglot has to offer. We discuss its many features and then run through how to install and set up this plugin, one step at a time. By the end of reading, you will have the knowledge to translate your WordPress website into the language of your choice.
Weglot: An Introduction
Weglot is an all-in-one multilingual platform that can automatically translate your website or blog into over 100 languages. The automatic translations are created using a combination of Microsoft, DeepL, Google, and Yandex translation services (depending on the language being translated). It also provides you with a useful in-context editor which allows you to manually tweak the automated translation.
Other Weglot features include…
- Ease of Use – You can use Weglot’s WordPress plugin to seamlessly integrate this multilingual service with your website. Weglot features can be accessed through your WordPress admin interface, as well as within the intuitive Weglot dashboard. Automatically translating your website and configuring the settings is extremely quick and easy, enabling you to have your multilingual site up and running within minutes.
- SEO – Weglot creates subdomains for new languages, so each page can be indexed by Google. It also translates all metadata and adds Hreflang tags to all pages.
- Support – The Weglot knowledge base provides extensive support documentation, including in-depth ‘Getting Started’ guides and how-to tutorials, as well as email support.
Weglot offers both a free and premium service, but in this article, we will look at how to install and use the free WordPress plugin. Although free, this version of Weglot is still a feature-rich product and allows you to translate up to 2000 words into one language.
If you are looking for extra functionality, the premium Weglot packages offer access to professional translation services, team collaboration tools, statistics on translated page views, and much more.
So now we know what Weglot has to offer, let’s next find out how to install the Weglot WordPress plugin and turn your website multilingual…
Step 1: Install the Weglot Plugin
The first step in the process of translating your WordPress website is to install the Weglot WordPress plugin. To do this, open your WordPress dashboard and click on the Plugins > Add Plugin menu in the left sidebar.
Next, in the Search function, type in Weglot Translate.
Once WordPress has retrieved the plugin, click on Install Now > Activate. Weglot will now be installed on your WordPress website and you can access it via your dashboard menu.
For more information on the different ways to install a plugin, check out our Beginners’ Step-by-Step Guide on How to Install a Plugin too.
Step 2: Sign Up for a Weglot Account
Once Weglot is installed on your WordPress website, the next step is to sign up for a Weglot account. To do so, open the Weglot website and click on Start Your Free Trial.
You will now be asked to create a new account with Weglot. And don’t worry, the free trial will stay forever free, providing the number of words you translate stays under 2000.
You will then be sent an email asking you to validate your account. Once you have confirmed your account, you will be directed back to your new Weglot dashboard where you will find your API key that will enable you to connect your Weglot account to your WordPress website.
Step 3: Connect Your Weglot Account and Choose Your Site’s Destination Language
To connect your Weglot account and WordPress website, copy the API key and then switch back to your WordPress dashboard. Now, select Weglot from the dashboard menu and then, under Main Configuration, paste in the API Key.
Underneath the API key you need to select the Original Language of the website (that’s the language it is written in now) and then the Destination Languages (the languages you want to translate your website into). Once you have selected the right languages for your website, click on Save Changes at the bottom of the page.
Bear in mind that if you are using the free version of Weglot then you only have the option of translating your site into one other language.
Step 4: View Your Multilingual Website
Next, a popup will appear telling you that your website is now multilingual. Click on the button Go to My Front Page to view your site.
Your website will still be written in your original language at the moment. At the bottom right-hand corner of your screen, you will find a language switcher. Click on the switcher to select your new language.
You will now find that all your content has been automatically translated to the second language (for the sake of this article, you can see above that I have translated my website into French). You will find that Weglot will translate all your content, including your sidebars, menu, headers, title, and URLs, which is one of the features that makes it such a popular plugin.
Step 5: Customize the Language Switcher
Switch back to your WordPress dashboard and scroll down the Weglot > Main Configuration page until you come to the Language Button Design section.
Here you have a number of options over the appearance of the language switcher. These include…
- Displaying country flags.
- Changing the shape of the flags.
- Using the full names of languages.
You can also opt to override the settings by adding CSS to give the buttons a specific style.
Continue to scroll down the page for further information on how to alter the location of the language switcher. Options include…
- Menu – Add the switcher to your site’s menu bar.
- Sidebar – Display the language switcher in your sidebar or any other widget area.
- Shortcode – Use Weglot’s pre-generated shortcode
[weglot_switcher]to add the switcher within your site’s content.
- Source Code – Add
<div id='weglot_here'></div>to the source code of your HTML page to display the language buttons anywhere on your site.
If you make any changes to the language switcher, make sure you click on the Save Changes button at the bottom of the page.
Step 6: Configure Other Settings
Weglot also gives you control over a variety of other settings. Under Translation Exclusion, you can opt to exclude certain pages or parts of a page from translation. (By default, Weglot translates all content on every page of your website). To exclude content, simply type in the URL of the page, or the CSS selector of the sections you don’t want to be translated.
Other useful settings include…
- Auto Redirection – Select to have users redirected to the appropriate translation of your site based on their browser language.
- Translate AMP – Opt to automatically translate accelerated mobile pages.
- Search Functionality – Although only in Beta, this feature will allow your users to search your website in the translated language.
Step 7: Manually Edit Translations
Having your website automatically translated is a great service, but there are no guarantees that the translation will be without fault. Luckily, Weglot gives you the option of manually adjusting the automatic translation — a job that can be done within the Weglot interface.
To do so, open your Weglot dashboard and, from the left-hand side menu, select Visual Editor > Start Editing.
The editor will now open, enabling you to rewrite any translations that don’t quite work.
Any changes you make within the editor will then automatically be pushed to your live site.
Final Thoughts on How to Translate Your WordPress Website Using Weglot
Evidently, Weglot is an impressive tool. Not only is it quick and easy to set up, but it is also extremely user-friendly, and packed full of useful features. So, if you want to translate your WordPress website to a professional standard, without the professional price tag, then Weglot is the multilingual plugin for you.
Still not sold on Weglot? Then check out our collection of the best WordPress translation plugins too.
Have you got any questions on how to translate your WordPress website using Weglot? If so, please feel free to ask away in the comments below…