Multisite for Different Languages vs. Translation Plugin: What Works Better?

If your business has a worldwide audience, you could be thinking how to communicate with everyone and build a good relationship. Localized product in the users’ native tongue could be the solution.

With the global economy making a shift towards an international market, it’s now possible for a local company to create a product for the whole world.

Business has changed a lot in the last decades. It’s not as easy as in the past, especially if you want to compete on a global scale. At this new world, the best way to adapt your business to this cultural change is by creating a localized content for each country you target. If you want to become successful with a global business you need to become a global company.

The Demand for Internationalization

The globalization of the world is increasing the demand for internationalization. Localization, and more specifically language localization, is key to internationalization. You want to have a global brand in order to compete with large companies.

Localization allows you to provide a more personal experience for your users by making your site accessible to people in their preferred language. Localization can have a massive impact on your conversion rate by catering to the needs of your users.

Localizing your WordPress site is an important step if you want to reach a global audience. By localizing your WordPress site, you can provide a better user experience in a language that your users understand the best, while also catering to the needs of those who aren’t as comfortable with the language.

Localizing your WordPress site also allows you to increase sales, your ROI and KPI’s by converting highly targeted traffic. But where do you start? And how do you find the right technology for the localization task?

How to Create Multilingual WordPress Website?

There are 2 main approaches to creating a multilingual WordPress website:

  1. Using a WordPress Multisite feature to construct a multilingual network of sites
  2. Making use of translation plugin that does the job automatically.

In this post, we’ll go over the benefits and drawbacks of these techniques and find out how to make the best of WordPress capabilities for multilingual content. Then we’ll walk you through how to use it to generate various language versions of your site. Let’s get going!

WordPress Multisite for Multilingual Sites

WordPress Multisite is a single system that allows users to manage numerous WordPress websites from one panel. The centralization of configuration and shared assets like plugins and themes simplifies service management.

The most important thing to note when creating a multilingual webpage is that multisite isn’t just various versions of the same site. It’s essentially a collection of separate internet sites that are all controlled from their own control panels. There are numerous advantages and disadvantages to this system.

The Pros of Multisite for Multilingual Content

The major benefit of using WordPress Multisite to establish a chain of international sites is that, because the sites are distinct, you may have completely different articles for each instead of simply translating the same documents into other languages. This allows you to create completely customized websites that cover a broad range of regional requirements all over the world.

Another huge benefit of multisite is that you may organize the websites however you like. Subdomains, folders, and even wholly new top-level domain names can be used.

The Cons of Multisite for Multilingual Content

The fact that each website is independent is one of the most obvious benefits of multisite for multilingual content. Nevertheless, there are certain downsides to this idea:

  1. The first is that it is not simple to use. Multisite is easier to administer than separate WordPress sites, as we’ve already explained. It is, nevertheless, more difficult than administering a single website.
  2. Not all plugins are compatible with multisite. You will have to choose specifically those that will not break your structure and ruin your content.
  3. While all of the sites in the group will use the same add-ons and design, they will need to be installed and customized separately for each one. Even if creating a new website takes only 30 minutes, creating a network of sites for each language may take a few days! Moreover, making changes in this network may also take a while.
  4. Likewise, every modification to the original site’s articles must be manually copied on all secondary sites. Although there are plugins that can simplify pieces of this task, at least some human labor will always be involved. This is especially true if you want duplicate content issues and keep your information up-to-date.
  5. Finally, translating a network of separate sites can be a hassle. There might be several methods to make this process more efficient, but none of them are perfect.

Because of these drawbacks, multisite isn’t always the greatest option for creating a multilingual website.

Luckily, this task can be streamlined with the use of different translation plugins. There are different options out there that may provide fully automated, semi-automatic, as well as manual translation modes.

Translation Plugin for Multilingual Sites

Many people struggle to get their website localized because they lack experience with internationalization. Translation plugin for WordPress enables localization of your WordPress sites, giving you several options for accomplishing it.

WordPress translation plugin is a tool that uses either a human translator or AI-based machine translation to automatically translate your posts or pages into different languages of your choice.

So, you are able to save your time and money!

Translation plugins for WordPress improve the user experience through more personal communication; they also promote intercultural dialogue through cross-cultural communications.

Translation plugins are much easier to use than creating a WordPress Multisite network.

In this review, we will take a look at Autoglot WordPress translation plugin and see advantages and disadvantages of this plugin for multilingual website.

The Pros of Translation Plugin for Multilingual Content

The list of advantages of translation plugin is actually huge. We will try to cover the most important items:

  1. It’s much easier to have a single installation of WordPress and administer all your tasks in one place instead of switching between numerous sites in a multisite network. You will only have one set of plugins, one copy of each article, one theme and one control panel.
  2. Translation plugin will automate all your configuration tasks. You will not need to make changes in your code, set up different paths and URLs for each language, tune themes and plugins. Autoglot translation plugin will do this for you within a few seconds and a couple of clicks.
  3. You will not need to update hundreds of copies of your articles in different languages if you need to modify any content. This happens on-the-fly right after you update your original article in your main language.
  4. If your translation plugin benefits from the power of neural machine translation solutions, all your translation happens automatically. This saves your time!
  5. Moreover, the cost of automatic translation can be 10, 100, or even 1,000 times lower than hiring a programmer to create a multisite network, paying a human translator for manual translation, and then uploading translated content to separate multisite blogs. Autoglot saves your money!
  6. Autoglot translation plugin is fully SEO compatible, it automatically adds hreflang tags, and supports many SEO plugins. With a multisite network, you will need to remember to update SEO settings on every page in order to make them visible for search engines. You will also need to interlink all language versions between each other. Autoglot does this automatically.
  7. Finally, the quality of AI-based automatic translation systems has improved considerably in recent years. As evidenced by many experts, there is almost no gap in translation quality between human-translated texts and the translations done by machine. You should also take into account that many freelance translators simply use machine tools to translate texts and slightly proofread them. Why pay for this?

The Cons of Translation Plugin for Multilingual Content

Unfortunately, there is no ideal solution that will cover all possible tasks and requirements. With all these awesome advantages come a few drawbacks. Luckily, there are not many of them.

First of all, if you want your content to be regional-specific, if you want to write about different topics in different languages, you’d better choose a multisite network with distinct sites for each region. Remember to update all of them!

Then, some plugins may be incompatible with automatic translation. Although there are plenty of plugins in WordPress repository, some of them may fail to support internationalization.

Finally, if your goal is to spend your company’s budget, translation plugin may turn out to be too simple, easy and cheap solution! In this case, you may want to hire a team of engineers, translators, managers, and spend a fortune on what can be done with Autoglot in a few clicks!

Summary: What is Better?

Offering your website in all users’ local languages can vastly enhance their interactions, resulting in increased involvement and revenues. Customers from all around the world can access language versions of your multilingual website.

Setting up a multilingual multisite network can be time-consuming and costly. Adding a translation plugin like Autoglot is quick, cheap and easy!

But each option comes with its unique pros and cons. Final choice is always yours!

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