Advanced Website: Configure a multi-language site

The information in this article is relevant only for Pro users at this time. For information about booking websites for Lite users, refer to the Guesty Booking Engine

Reach a larger audience by translating your site into multiple languages. For each new language you add, a duplicate version of your site is created to host the translation. You can translate sites manually, or use the free Google Translate feature built-in to the editor. If you use the Google Translate feature, make sure you review the entire translation before publishing.

The following features are currently not available in multi-language:

  • Multi-Language (ML) functionality is currently not supported in the app store.
  • Personalization Rules
  • Blog Posts
  • Page SEO titles and descriptions are not automatically translated, however you can translate them manually.
  • Custom widgets

Note:

  • Sites with over 100 pages cannot be translated into multiple languages. Please see the Consideration section of this article for more information.

  • It is recommended to keep the number of languages to a minimum. Please see the Consideration section of this article for more information.

  • We use ISO 639 to represent our languages.

  • It is recommended to ensure a backup is created before adding languages.

  • The Google Calendar widget is not able to be translated. The structure of the calendar (for instance the month and days) will remain in the site's default language. The calendar that is selected to be displayed should appear in the language set within its Google Calendar settings.

Important:

After a site has been translated, all content added to any language version of the site will not sync to the other language versions. For this reason, we recommend adding multiple languages as a final step, once you have completed building your site.

If you need to make updates after your site has been translated, see the Make content updates after translation section of this article for instructions.

Select default language

The default language is the main language of your site. All other languages will exist in sub-directories while the default language uses the main domain. We try to identify the default language of your content automatically.

Important:

You must set your default language before adding additional languages. Once you add additional languages, you will not be able to change the default language.

To manually set the default site language:

  1. In the side panel, click Pages, and then click Add site languages or Manage site languages.
  2. Next to the current default language, click Change, and select a default language.

Once you add multiple languages to your site, all new content needs to be translated from the default language version of your site. Once languages have been added, the default language cannot be changed.

Add a new language

Note:

For sites made with Flex, you must exit Flex mode before adding additional languages.

To add languages to your site:

  1. In the side panel, click Pages, and then click Add site languages.
  2. Click + Add languages, and select one or more languages.
    Note some languages are available under multiple country flags (for example, Spanish).
  3. Click Done when you are finished.
  4. Click Save.
  5. The language selector is added in a new row at the top of the site and you are immediately prompted to position it. This position is reflected in all language versions; review it on all devices. Click Done when you have placed the language selector.

Once you click Done, the new languages will be added to the site and any change you make in the location and/or design of the selector must be done in each language separately.

Disable or delete languages

To disable a language, click the toggle next to the language.

To delete a language, click the X next to the toggle, and then click Delete.

Disabling a language. This allows you to work on the content and translation for that language before making the language public and live on your site. If you want to publish the site without one of the languages, make sure to disable that language.

Deleting a language. This removes a language from the site and any links to this language will redirect to the default language. A backup version will be added automatically to your backup list in the site settings.

Language selector design

The language selector appears in the navigation bar on all language versions of the site; it is what enables visitors to switch between languages.

To edit the design of the language selector:

  1. Click the language selector in the navigation bar, and click the Design tab to see layout options. Alternatively, in the left panel, click Pages, click Manage site languages, and then click the Design tab.
  2. Select a layout. The layout you select affects the desktop and tablet view, mobile devices can only include the small prefixed language drop-down.

Retranslate a page

If you make changes to a site page after configuring a multi-language site, you need to re-translate the page. When re-translating, the page being updated will automatically inherit the content and design of the page in the default language. If you are re-translating from the default language, it will automatically update all site languages but if you are re-translating from a secondary language it will only update that specific language.

To re-translate a page:

  1. In the side panel, click Pages.
  2. Click the gear icon next to the desired page and select Redo Translations. If you are updating from a secondary language, the button name is Update this Translation.
  3. Confirm that you want to proceed.

A backup version of your site is created automatically in case you need to revert your changes.

Automatic vs manual translation

By default, the multi-language feature automatically translates your site content into the new language using Google Translate. While this service is provided for free, Google Translate does not always provide the most accurate translations, so make sure to review and edit the content in the translated versions of your site. If you prefer to manually translate your entire site, disable the Use automatic translation for new languages toggle.

Edit content in the new language

To select a different language version, click on the flag of your default language and select the language you would like to edit from the drop-down.

Any changes you make to any language version (for example, changing text, images, or adding/removing widgets) will not be reflected in the other versions of your site.

Add pages and popups

New pages can be added from the default language only. If you want to display a specific page in a specific language, add it to the default language first and then hide the page in the navigation menu. To add a page to all languages, first add it to the default language. Then switch to each translated version separately, in the left panel click Pages, select the page you want to translate, and click Translate in the drop-down.

Considerations

While site content is automatically translated, the following fields are not translated:

  • Site/Page Title
  • Site/Page Description
  • Site/Page Keywords
  • Alt-text (on images)

Note:

  • These fields are important for SEO, so make sure you translate them manually for each language. For more information on page information, see Site SEO settings.
  • Text connected via Connect Data will not be automatically translated. To translate this text, disconnect the widgets from the Content Library and translate them manually.
  • The total number of pages a site with multiple languages can have is around 200, so if a site has 100 pages, only a single language can be added.
  • Adding multiple languages to your site can enhance its accessibility, but it's crucial to be cautious about the quantity. Excessive languages may lead to the following:

    • Performance Impact: Too many languages might slow down your site and affect user experience.

    • Possible Errors: Such as editor error messages, page rendering issues, and/or broken links.

    • Maintenance Challenges: Managing content for numerous languages can be time-consuming.

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