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How to localise a content-managed site – Case Study

We’re going to take you step-by-step through a localisation project to explain how it’s done. The example we’ve chosen is the multilingual site we did for Loc8tor.

Loc8tor.com is an ecommerce site where customers can buy Loc8tor devices to help them keep track of keys, mobile phones, pets and all sorts of other belongings. This is an ideal showcase for the different elements involved in the professional localisation of a website.

 

With any website, the first step is to get the content into a format that translators can easily work with.

There are two main ways of translating content from a CMS – the translators can work directly into the system and input translations as they go along, or an export can be obtained from the system – usually either XML or Excel format.

Translation is not always done in a linear fashion – starting at the beginning and finishing at the end – a translator needs to be able to skip parts and come back to them later, raise queries if something is unclear etc. When it comes to proofreading the translation, a file will usually be easier to work on and edit than the content within the CMS. With this in mind, an exported file is often the best method.

So, the Project Manager will deliver the file to the translators, or give them access to the CMS as necessary. Once the translation is complete, the proofreaders do their part. Any images or other parts of the website not already part of the CMS/export file would be localised at this stage too – a professional localisation includes everything, not just the obvious text components of the website.

If an export file has been used, then this needs to be imported back into the CMS. This is usually done by the client’s web team, but sometimes we are given an access login to the system and can upload it ourselves.

The published sites we localised for Loc8tor can be found at www.loc8tor.eu, www.loc8tor.fr and www.loc8tor.es.

With some projects, this is where our involvement ends, but there are other stages that are recommended in order for the localised website to be a success:

Usability testing – this is especially important for eCommerce websites or any others where transactions take place. The localised site is tested from the user’s point of view to make sure all functions work correctly, links lead to the pages they should, etc.

Multilingual SEO & eMarketing – just because you’ve invested in localising your site doesn’t mean that customers in that particular country know it is there! Submitting your site to local search engines, building some inbound links and promoting the new website online will all help get more traffic, and these initial measures are included as standard in our Strategic Approach to Localisation packages.

Managing updates – it’s important that you consider how updates to the website will be managed. Many CMSs can be configured to send updates for translation, which minimises the delay in keeping the multilingual site current.

Keyword Research – Knowing the most popular search terms for your product or service is critical. We help to capture maximum exposure by identifying not just your keywords, but also complementary keywords and competitive keywords to help you optimise your website, and maximize the effectiveness of your multilingual Pay Per Click campaigns.

Pay-Per-Click – ideal for giving your web traffic a boost, for promotions, sales and to announce new content. In most industries it will be expensive to stay at the top of results using PPC alone, but it should form part of your overall web strategy if you have sufficient budget.

A good localisation strategy will consider these additional elements of the process as well as simply translating the main body of text on a website.

If you have any questions about website localisation, or any comments about this article, please let us know.

Multilingual content management now free and easy…

It’s an all too common problem: How do you maintain the multilingual pages of your website as changes are made to the English? To what extent do you allow local input, while retaining central control?

Joomla has been the web’s favourite open source CMS since its separation from Mambo September, 2005, boasting some 4 million downloads in 2008, making it the most popular CMS of last year.

The Nooku story germinated from a conversation between Joomla!’s Johan Janssens and government and NGO stakeholders who wanted multi-lingual management, better than Joomfish.

Thanks to Johan, Pete and Mathias, webmasters the world over will have access to the plugin that is expected to go down a storm. As Phillipe Chabot, ICT Coordinator of the United Nations Regional Information Centre put it:“If you are thinking multi-language; Nooku is a must have! Our website needs to drive 13 different languages, so for us this made a giant step forward to improve our web presence. It’s just brilliant!”

Nooku is not yet publicly available

As a partner Web-Translations has the source code and can assist with implementation. By integrating Nooku with Web-Translations’ Pay-As-You-Go Translation service, users have the perfect solution for maintaining multilingual websites. Web-Translations is the UK’s only full service Nooku integrator.

Cassandra Oliver, Marketing Manager at Web-Translations had the chance to test-drive Nooku last week: “What struck me first of all is that the interface is so simple. Nooku is easy to use and seamlessly integrates with Joomla. It’s miles better than Joomfish and an ideal tool for many of our clients.”

Web professionals and laymen alike are singing Nooku’s praises across Europe:

“If you need to build multi-lingual sites that are easy to manage…you’ll simply love Nooku.  Customizable, elegant and so well-designed it fits Joomla! like a glove, this is a professional solution for multi-lingual content that will rock the community!”

Paul Delbar – delius, Belgium

The name Nooku is a phonetic spelling for the Swahili word “Nuku” meaning “to translate”. It follows the spirit of the name Joomla! derived from the Swahili “Jumla” meaning “all together”.  Nooku website

Having deployed several multilingual ecommerce websites using OS Commerce and Magento, Web-Translations are now helping businesses to save thousands by switching from proprietary CMS solutions such as Tridian, to mature Open Source alternatives such as Joomla, Drupal and WordPress.

Why pay a license fee?

In April 2007, SDL Trados acquired Tridion (a CMS company) for €69 million, that investment is recovered in the form of license fees, development and translation services. An implementation can cost anything from US$ 80,000 to … sky is the limit.

At a time when businesses are looking to cut costs, we’re advising clients to review expensive license fees and the cost of running their CMS. Open Source has come of age and matured in the area of ecommerce and CMS. Enterprises looking to save can do so quickly by embracing Joomla! + Nooku with Web-Translations, where there are no license fees and a vibrant community means support and development is plentiful and inexpensive.

Web Translations sees Open Source technologies as a key growth area of its business strategy, with plans to release multilingual professional translation plugins for WordPress, Drupal, Magento, and Open Office in 2009.

Web-Translations partners with Chapter Eight

Web-Translations are pleased to announce the establishment of a new partnership with Leeds based development company Chapter Eight. Chapter Eight specialise in web development, Search Engine optimization, web design and online promotion for clients working in a wide range of business areas.

With Chapter Eight’s latest Content Management technology development and Web-Translations’ language expertise the companies are working together to offer customers greater control of their language asset with the multilingual content management system which is now in place. The partnership enables both companies to offer extra services to clients who are targeting non-English speaking customers and who wish to embrace the global marketplace a multilingual website can access.

The combination of the technical expertise of Chapter Eight with the translation and international e business strategy provided by Web-Translations ensures business and communication can take place swiftly and efficiently with customers no matter what their native language is. For further information please contact Cassandra Oliver at co@web-translations.co.uk or 0113 8150460

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