Google Website Translator for WordPress – A Simple Step-By-Step Guide

If you’re looking for an easy way to have your website content translated from English to another language, you’ve come to the right place. In this quick tutorial, we’ll show you how to set up a basic WordPress website with a digital translator built right in.

Introducing Google Website Translator

If you visit a website which is not in your language, you will notice that the content is displayed in English. Sometimes, this can be frustrating if you want to read an article in your native tongue. Wouldn’t it be great if you could switch the language on the fly and have the content display in the desired language?

Well, you can! Google Website Translator is a free tool which allows you to easily switch the language and content of any WordPress website you may have. It is also one of the best free Google tools to reduce adverts and improve privacy on your own site.

With Google Website Translator, all you need to do is paste in the URL of your site (e.g. https://www.thisiswhatsimportant.com/) and you’ll be taken to a simple setup page. From here, you can choose between the traditional method of inputting the new language yourself (i.e. one by one) or you can choose to let Google do the manual labor for you. In both cases, the process is the same – simply click Next and you’ll be taken to the translation interface.

How Does Google Website Translator Work?

When you paste in the URL of your website, a little bit of code will be recognized and a small interface will pop up. Essentially, Google Website Translator is a browser extension which utilizes the Google Cloud Translation API. This API takes your site’s content and translates it into dozens of languages (if not more) for you. In most cases, translations are done within seconds.

You can view the list of languages offered by the Google Cloud Translation API here. As you can see, there are more than 100 languages available (including English) but you only need a few to make your site content accessible to the general public. For example, if you’re looking to translate your site’s content into Spanish, you can choose between Spanish (Español), French (Français) or German (Deutsch).

Why Should You Use Google Website Translator Instead of Traditional Translators?

If you’ve ever tried to translate a whole page of content from English to another language, you’ll know how tedious and time-consuming this can be. With Google Website Translator, every piece of content is separately translated and the language can be changed at any point during the translation process. This can significantly reduce the amount of time it takes to translate your content. Additionally, if you have a lot to say, this is the perfect tool for you as you can break the content down into smaller pieces and have them translated individually.

Traditional translators work by taking entire blocks of text and translating them verbatim. While this can be extremely accurate, it can also result in a significant amount of content being lost in translation. With Google Website Translator, you are essentially providing a piece of text and selecting the language you’d like the content to be translated to. Traditional translators may not have the nuance or flexibility required to properly translate your content.

Setting Up a WordPress Website with Google Website Translator

Now that you know what Google Website Translator is and how it works, let’s see how you can set it up on your WordPress site.

First, you’ll need to install the WordPress plugin from the WordPress repository. In the WordPress dashboard, click on Plugins and click on the “Add New” button to reach the plugin search bar.

Type in “Google website translator” in the search bar and click on the “Add” button to install the plugin. Once the plugin is active, you’ll see a small “Add Translator” button in the top right corner of the screen. Click on this button and you’ll be taken to a configuration page where you can choose the languages you’d like your content to be translated to. Make sure you click on the “Save Changes” button at the bottom right corner of the page before you jump back to your dashboard.

Now that your plugin is installed, you can edit the content on your WordPress site by clicking on the three horizontal stripes in the upper right corner of the screen. From here, you can click on the “Site Stats” icon to reach your site’s dashboard. Now click on the “Translate this page” button at the top of the page and you’ll be taken to a second configuration page. Here you can choose to either translate the page manually or have Google do the manual labor for you.

Manually Translating a Page in WordPress

Let’s say you already have a few articles on your site and you’d like to have them translated. You can click on the three horizontal stripes in the upper right corner of the screen once more and this time choose the “Translate this page manually” option. From here, you can paste in the URL of a page you’d like to have translated (e.g. https://www.thisiswhatsimportant.com/blog/) and you’ll be taken to a third configuration page. On this page, you’ll be presented with a list of suggested words and phrases in English. Simply click on the ones you’d like to use in your content and you’ll be taken back to the translation interface.

From here, you can either select the “Translate as you type” option which is the default or you can choose to have Google translate the whole page before displaying it. In both cases, the process is the same – simply click the “Translate” button and you’ll be presented with a confirmation message that the translation is done. You can also revisit this page and select another page to translate or come back later and select the “Translate this page manually” option again if you’d like to go over your content once more before finalizing it.

Have Google Translate Automatically Translate a Page in WordPress

If you’re looking to have your content translated automatically, you can click on the three horizontal stripes in the upper right corner of the screen once more and this time choose the “Translate this page automatically” option. Here you can paste in the URL of a page you’d like to have translated (e.g. https://www.thisiswhatsimportant.com/blog/) and you’ll be taken to a configuration page where you can choose the languages you’d like your content to be translated to. Once you’re done, simply click on the “Translate” button and you’ll be presented with a confirmation message that the translation is done. From here you can either select the “Translate as you type” option which is the default or you can choose to have Google translate the whole page before displaying it. In both cases, the process is the same – simply click the “Translate” button and you’ll be presented with a confirmation message that the translation is done.

Adding More Languages to Your Website

With Google Website Translator, you can add more languages to your site with relative ease. Simply go back to your dashboard in WordPress and click on the three horizontal stripes in the upper right corner of the screen. From here, you can either click on the “Site Stats” icon to reach your site’s dashboard or you can choose to go to the “Settings” menu and click on “Read More” to reach the page where you can add more languages to your site. In most cases, you’ll only need to choose from among a few languages to have your content displayed in multiple languages (if not all).

To quickly add another language to your site, simply scroll down and you’ll see a + sign. Click on this sign and you’ll reach a page where you can type in the name of the language you’d like to add. After you add the language, simply click on the “Save Changes” button at the bottom right corner of the page to add it to your site. You can also choose to add a few other languages at a time by clicking on the three horizontal stripes in the upper right corner of the screen once more and choosing the “Add More Languages” option. From here, you can either click on the “Site Stats” icon to reach your site’s dashboard or you can choose to go to the “Settings” menu and click on “Read More” to reach the page where you can add more languages to your site. In most cases, you’ll only need to choose from among a few languages to have your content displayed in multiple languages (if not all).