It’s a fact that everything is shifting online. As we try to reach more audiences around the world wide web, it is becoming increasingly important to display our websites in different languages.
To achieve this, you will need a multi-language translation tool on your website where other people can easily connect to you in their own language, no matter what country and nationality they are.
Most people prefer visiting a site in a language they understand, or else they will not be interested. There are plenty of free and premium plugins on WordPress that offers a solution to this problem, but WPML stands apart from the rest. This plugin is well-liked and most experts really recommend this plugin to WordPress users. This article will introduce you to what WPML is and why you should consider this plugin for your websites.
What is WPML?
WordPress Multilingual plugin, also known as WPML was launched in 2007 by OnTheGoSystems. If you have been using WordPress for a long time, you’ve probably heard about this plugin. It is among the most popular and recommended translation plugins by many WordPress users and experts. As the name suggests, it is a dynamic multilingual plugin that allows your WordPress content to be translated into different languages.
WPML works seamlessly with lots of themes and plugins on WordPress. It supports search engines that are optimized for Multilingual SEO and allows you to have full authority over what URL format you want for subdomains, directories, or parameters.
WPML ships with 60 pre-configured languages. If a particular language is not included, you can add that language through the WPML’s language editing settings.
The “Translate Everything” feature now offers users the ability to translate content with a click of a button.
- WPML is inexpensive despite its numerous features, making it one of the most cost-effective solutions for website translation.
- When you purchase this plugin, expect outstanding support from the developers. It also receives frequent updates and bug fixes.
- It has a very user-friendly user interface.
- This plugin has RTL (Right To Left) support for languages where sentences start from the right side of the page.
- ‘Translation Management’ is now added to the core plugin.
- WPML barely gets the automated approach to translation, in which case you need to be capable of manually translating key areas on your website. It might be too overwhelming and complex for first-time users.
- This plugin uses an extensive database and can be somewhat bulky. If you manage large networks or websites, it may slow down the speed of your website.
WPML costs may vary as it has three different price plans aside from the multiple add-on modules that you can purchase here. It comes up with annual rates. The first one is the “Multilingual Blog” or the basic plan that allows 1 site which costs $39, next is the “Multilingual CMS” which is the popular option as it includes everything from the Multilingual Blog and can translate WooCommerce websites and supports 3 sites which cost $99 and lastly, the “Multilingual Agency” that comes up with unlimited websites that you can register plus, everything from the CMS package is included and costs $199.
All packages also unlock support for custom fields, WooCommerce, and page builders. It also gives you access to translating widgets, translating texts in theme and plugins admin, managing attachments in different languages, and allows you to assign translation work through multi-user translation management.
There is no limit to the number of words you can translate, however additional costs may occur if you use WPML’s automatic translation. The cost per translated word may change, depending on the translation engine you use. For Google Translate, it costs two credits for each word. For Microsoft Azure, it costs one credit per word; and in the case of DeepL, it costs four credits per word. It may cost more but WPML only charges for the total number of words translated in a particular month.
When compared to other translation services, WPML is cost-effective.
- $39 for 1-year support and updates with unlimited languages and words for 1 website.
- $99 for 1-year support and updates with unlimited languages and words, plus 90,000 credits between any language pair every month for 3 websites.
- $199 for 1-year support and updates with unlimited languages and words, plus 180,000 credits between any language pair every month for unlimited websites.
If you’re still not satisfied with WPML’s services, they have a 30-day money-back guarantee for all purchases and upgrades that you have made.
WPML comes up with a user-friendly interface that allows users to configure their settings quickly and easily to create a multilingual website. For this, go to WPML’s website and choose a plan that suits your needs. Then, download the plugin and install it. After the plugin has been activated, it will take you to a setup wizard to configure it.
After selecting your preferred languages, the next step will proceed to the Language Switcher. Here, you can arrange the order of the chosen languages and create changes for your languages.
By default, WPML will automatically detect the language used by your website.
WPML provides users the option of formatting their website language URLs through a language argument in the URL, in virtual folders, or in different domains. During this step, you can select the format when setting up WPML for the first time.
The next step is registration, where you will need to enter the license key from your WPML account. You have to register your license key in order to get the latest updates for your plugin. Note that WPML allows you to transfer a license to clients and if you register every website you own, WPML gives you an additional website license for free!
Once you’re done setting up your site, you can choose to customize your site’s language switcher. You can also configure the following from the language switcher: the menu language switcher, widget language switcher, and footer language switcher on your website. You can even choose where you want to place the links to your languages on your website.
The next step is to choose your preferred translation mode. There are two choices for translating your site. The first one is Translate Everything, which lets you automatically translate your entire site. The second one, Translate Some gives you the option to choose exactly which content you want to translate.
The next step is improving your site’s translations with key plugins like enabling Toolset Types. If you are a CMS or Agency license holder, you should enable the WPML components for that website which include String Translation, Translation Management, and Media Translation.
First of all, the WPML Components mentioned are the three additional plugins if you purchased a CMS or Agency License. These will help to enhance the performance of your multilingual websites.
- String Translation allows you to translate interface strings from WordPress without using .mo files. Static texts as well as user-generated texts outside the posts, including tagline and SEO data, are also translated.
- Translation Management allows the website admin to manage the Translator role according to the designated translation work.
- Media Translation allows you to choose what images are displayed for each language.
For advanced multilingual websites, there are WordPress plugins like Toolset Types that are recommended for all users. It allows you to set up custom post types, custom fields, and taxonomies for your multilingual sites
Other plugins such as Sticky Links and CMS Navigation are available to the Agency and CMS license holders.
Sticky Links prevents internal links from breaking when you change the permalink structure, hierarchy, and page slugs; while CMS Navigation gives additional elements in navigation like breadcrumbs trail, dropdown menus, and sidebar navigation.
While Sticky Links and CMS Navigation do their job well, it doesn’t offer any benefit for WPML.
You can always choose to install other add-ons depending on your needs. There are other add-ons for WPML that might be useful to you. These are displayed on the compatibility plugins section that is supported, and shown in the downloads section. The purpose of the compatibility plugin is to ensure that WPML will work well with other solutions.
Is WPML worth using on my website?
There are other translation services that offer solutions, but nothing that is on par with the WPML features and capabilities that it provides. WPML offers you a variety of payment plans and credits that will help users allocate their money without crossing their budget. It offers a 30-day money-back guarantee if in case you don’t find its services useful.
Regarding its features, what we love about WPML are the add-ons. You are free to select what add-ons you need to install. In that respect, the WordPress database is not bloated. This prevents slow loading times and allows for a smooth, lightweight website.
Another amazing feature is Translation Management. You can manage and assign the translation work to colleagues or third-party companies, or use the automatic translation service. If you want an optimized SEO website, WPML is SEO-friendly which makes it appealing to search engine bots.
Overall, WPML is a powerful and dynamic solution that enables content translation to different languages conveniently based on what your website needs.
Low Cost Web Agency offers a Business license of WPML for all multilingual websites that we build and host. We create professional multilingual websites for businesses at a low cost.
Contact us today and let’s discuss about your new multilingual website, so you won’t have to worry about language barriers getting in the way of your business and your customers.