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Offering your store in multiple languages

You can have a multilingual Ecwid store on your website so your customers can shop in their preferred language. Add translations of your catalog, including product names, descriptions, options, category names. Ecwid will automatically translate the rest — the texts on buttons, invoices, and email notifications. You can check the list of 36 languages available for translation.

To offer customers a complete multilingual experience, translate the website along with the store. Ecwid Instant Site allows you to translate your store into several languages and show a language switcher on the site's header.
Plan availability: Business and Unlimited.

Enabling additional languages

With additional languages, you can add translations for your catalog – product and category names and descriptions, options and variations, product ribbons and subtitles. For the additional languages you enable, Ecwid shows translated texts on buttons, invoices and mail notifications.

To offer your store in multiple languages:

  1. From your Ecwid admin, go to  Settings → General → Regional Settings.
  2. Click Language Settings in the Store Language block.
  3. Click +Add Languages in the Additional languages section:

    Additional languages in Ecwid store

  4. Select a language from the drop-down box.

    Select a language for Ecwid store

  5. Click Add Language.
  6. This language now appears on the list of additional languages:
    List of additional languages

Repeat the above steps to enable additional languages in your store.

Once complete, additional sections (i.e., translations) appear in your product and category management pages. There you can add translations of your catalog. Ecwid translates texts in the store interface (buttons, forms, etc) for you by detecting the browser language of customers visiting your store. As a result, visitors will be able to shop in their language.

If you are using custom store labels, for example, your own text on buttons or in forms, they will not be automatically translated. But it is possible to add custom labels in necessary languages.

Translating product names and descriptions

When you have enabled the additional languages, it is time to translate your catalog – product names, category names, option names, and descriptions.

To add translations of your product names and descriptions:

  1. From your Ecwid admin, go to Catalog → Products.
  2. After selecting a product, you will see the product management page.
  3. Add the translated product name and description to the respective language section under Translations:

    Add translation of product

  4. Click Save.
We recommend manual translation for your main international market to ensure the accuracy of your catalog. For the rest, you can use automated translation services like Google Translate.

Translating product options and attributes

If your products have options or attributes, you may add translations for both:

  1. From your Ecwid admin, go to Catalog → Products.
  2. Click on a product to open its editing page.
  3. Click the Options or the Attributes tab.
  4. Add translations to the corresponding languages.
  5. Click Save.

Translating category names and descriptions

With additional languages enabled, you can add translations of category names and descriptions:

  1. From your Ecwid admin, go to Catalog → Categories.
  2. Click a category name on the left (the management page of that category is on the right).
  3. Add the translation of the category’s name and description in the respective language section under Translations:

    Translate category in Ecwid store

  4. Click Save.
Follow the instructions for managing categories to add categories to your store.

The translated category names appear in the catalog, in Instant Site’s menu, and in the Menu on your site, where you have added your Ecwid store.

You can also translate a welcome text in your store – just translate the description of the default Store Front Page category.

Translating shipping methods at checkout

With additional languages enabled, you can add a translation for a shipping method’s name and description that will match a buyer’s browser language:

Translating_shipping_methods_at_checkout__1_.png

To add a shipping method translation to your store:

  1. From your Ecwid admin, go to Shipping & Pickup.
  2. Select a shipping method or create a new one.
  3. In the Shipping name at checkout, enter the translation:

    Translating_shipping_methods_at_checkout__2_.png

  4. (optional) In the Description for customers, enter the translation.
  5. To show the shipping name and description in the main language, simply leave the field empty.
  6. Click Save.

That’s it. Ecwid will detect the preferred language of your customers’ browsers and automatically show the shipping name and description in that language.

Translating payment methods at checkout

With additional languages enabled, you can add a translation for a payment method that will match a buyer’s browser language.

To add a payment method translation to your store:

  1. From your Ecwid admin, go to Payment.
  2. Select a payment method or create a new one.
  3. In the Payment name at checkout, enter the translation:

    translating_payment_method.png

  4. (optional) In the Set payment instructions at checkout, enter the translation.
  5. Click Save.

That’s it. Ecwid will detect the preferred language of your customers’ browsers and automatically show the payment name and instructions in that language. If you leave fields for translation empty, payment name and description will be displayed in the default language of your store.

Translating the Order comments field at checkout

The Order comments section is a small text box that appears during the checkout. Your customers can add any additional information regarding the order to the text box. With additional languages enabled, you can add a translation for the Order comments section caption that will match a buyer’s browser language:

Translating_the_Order_comments_field_at_checkout__3_.png

To add multilingual order comments to your store:

  1. From your Ecwid admin, go to Settings → General → Cart & Checkout.
  2. Scroll down to the Order comments section.
  3. Enable the Order notes field toggle.
  4. For each language, add a corresponding translation that will be shown at checkout:

    Translating_the_Order_comments_field_at_checkout__2_.png

  5. To show the Order comments field caption in the default language, simply leave the field empty:

    Translating_the_Order_comments_field_at_checkout__1_.png

  6. Click Save.

That’s it. Now Ecwid will detect the preferred language of your customers’ browsers and automatically show the Order comments field caption in that language.

Translating custom fields at checkout

Custom checkout fields are extra fields that you manually add to your checkout page. With extra checkout fields, you can ask shoppers about adding gift wrapping, preferred delivery day, or any other information. With additional languages enabled, you can add a translation for extra fields at checkout that will match a buyer’s browser language.

You can add translations only to those custom fields that are already created in your store.

To add translation for custom checkout fields:

  1. From your Ecwid admin, go to Settings → Custom Checkout Fields.
  2. Near the field you want to translate, click Actions → Edit.
  3. For each language, add a corresponding translation that will be shown at checkout.
  4. Click Save.

That’s it. Now Ecwid will detect the preferred language of your customers’ browsers and automatically show the field in that language.

Translating product page title and meta description for SEO

When you add a brief information about a product to its page title and meta description it is shown in search results. Seeing crucial information about a product entices people to click on a link and visit your website. Thus, by creating search engine optimization (or SEO), you can get more traffic to your store.

If you sell in multiple languages, you can translate page title and meta description for products so that the information would be more relevant to customers. Сustomers with different preferred browser languages will see descriptions in different languages in search results.

To add translation for a page title and meta description:

  1. Enable additional languages in your store.
  2. From your Ecwid admin, go to Catalog → Products.
  3. Select a product or create a new one.
  4. Click on the SEO tab.
  5. Enter translation for each language in the corresponding fields.
  6. To show page title and meta description in the default language, simply leave the field empty.
  7. Click Save.

Translating alt texts for images

Alternative text allows you to describe images for search engines and visually impaired users. It also displays if the image fails to load. This way, alt texts help users decide on a purchase and improve your site ranking, making it easier to find your products via images online.

By default, a product name is used as alt text for each product image. You can provide your own text instead, as well as translations for it.

To add alt text translation to a product image:

  1. From your Ecwid admin, go to Catalog → Products.
  2. Click on the product you want to edit.
  3. Hover over the image.
  4. Click Actions → Edit Alt Text:
    image1.png
  5. Add a corresponding translation for each language.
  6. (optional) Enter alt text translations for other product images.
  7. Click Save.

That’s it. You’ve added alternative text translation(s) to a product image.

Translating alt texts for categories and subcategories

Alternative text allows you to describe images for search engines and visually impaired users. It also displays if the image fails to load. This way, alt texts help users decide on a purchase and improve your site ranking, making it easier to find your products via images online.

By default, a category/subcategory name is used as alt text for each category/subcategory image. You can provide your own text instead, as well as translations for it.

To add alt text translation to a category or subcategory image:

  1. From your Ecwid admin, go to Catalog → Categories.
  2. Click on the category or subcategory you want to edit.
  3. Hover over the image.
  4. Click Actions → Edit Alt Text:
    Adding alt texts to category and subcategory images.png
  5. Add a corresponding translation for each language.
  6. Click Save.

That’s it. You’ve added alternative text translation(s) to a category or subcategory image.

Translating category page title and meta description for SEO

If you’re using custom meta tags for categories in your store, you can add translations to them. This way, in the search results, customers will see your category SEO texts in different languages based on their preferred browser language.

To add translation for a category title and meta description:

  1. Enable additional languages in your store.
  2. From your Ecwid admin, go to Catalog → Categories.
  3. Find the desired category in the left panel and click it, or create a new category.
  4. Switch to the SEO tab.
  5. Enter translation for each language in the corresponding fields:

    SEO_for_multilingual_categories.png

  6. To show category title and meta description in the default language, simply leave the field empty.
  7. Click Save.

Translating your “Compare to” price name

As you put items on sale, you can set customizable “Compare to” price wording to highlight product price before sale on the storefront. You can translate this wording so that customers see your sale price information in different languages based on their preferred browser language.

The orange “ON SALE” label in your store is translated automatically.

To add translations to “Compare to” price name in your store:

  1. From your Ecwid admin, go to Settings → General → Cart & Checkout.
  2. Scroll down to the “Compare to” price section.
  3. In the “Compare to” price name field, add a corresponding translation for each language:

    Compare to2.png

  4. Click Save.

That’s it. Now Ecwid will detect the preferred language of your customers’ browsers and automatically show the “Compare to” price name in that language.

Translating your store’s legal pages

With additional languages enabled, you can add translations to any legal pages you’ve attached to your store. This way, customers can read your documents in their preferred language.

To add translations to your store’s legal pages:

  1. From your Ecwid admin, go to Settings → Legal.
  2. Scroll down to Legal pages and policies.
  3. Open an existing legal page for editing or add a new one.
  4. Choose your option:
    • If you’ve created your legal document in the Ecwid admin, enter its translation in the Page content block under Translations.
    • If you’ve appended an external page with your legal information, enter the URL of its translation in the Page settings block.
  5. (optional) Default legal page titles are translated automatically. If you’ve renamed your legal page to suit your business flow better, enter the translation for your custom legal page title in the Page settings block.
For Instant Site users: you need to make your website multilingual so that customers can see the translations you’ve added for your legal pages when switching between languages.

Translating custom texts in your store’s tax invoices

If you’re using tax invoices with custom texts in your store, you can add translations to these texts. This way, customers will get fully translated tax invoices in different languages based on their preferred browser language.

To add translations for custom texts in tax invoices:

  1. Enable additional languages in your store.
  2. From your Ecwid admin, go to Settings → Taxes & Invoices → Tax invoices → Contents of tax invoice.
  3. In the Content section, click Add or edit translations below the field you want to translate.
  4. Enter translation for each language in the corresponding fields.
  5. Click Save.
Translating custom texts that you manually add to the HTML template is currently unavailable.

Translating custom texts in your store’s invoices (printable orders)

If you’ve added custom texts like a footer message to invoices (printable orders) in your store, you can add translations to these texts. This way, customers will get fully translated invoices in different languages based on their preferred browser language.

To add translations for custom texts in invoices/printable orders:

  1. Enable additional languages in your store.
  2. From your Ecwid admin, go to Settings → Invoice (Settings → Printable Order).
  3. In the Content section, click Add or edit translations below the field you want to translate.
  4. Enter translation for each language in the corresponding fields.
  5. Click Save.
Translating custom texts that you manually add to the HTML template is currently unavailable.

Adding translations to your store in bulk

To speed up creating a multilingual storefront, you can add translations to your products and categories in bulk. There are two ways to do this:

  • Using Ecwid’s Bulk Product Editor that allows you to mass edit existing products and product variations.
  • Using Import & Export tool that helps you add or update products, their options and variations, and store categories.

Deleting additional languages from your store

While you have at least two languages in your store, Ecwid will automatically translate your store to the languages you specified in your settings. If you no longer need your store to be localized, you can remove additional languages from your store.

To completely remove a language from your store:

  1. From your Ecwid admin, go to Settings → General → Regional Settings.
  2. Click Language Settings in the Store Language block.
  3. Near the language you want to delete, click Actions → Remove.

Now your store won’t be translated to the removed language. If later you re-enable that language for your store, all translations made for products will remain, so you don’t have to re-enter text.

How translation works for customers

After you enable an additional language and translate your catalog into it, your store will become multilingual. Ecwid will detect on the fly what is set as a primary language in a visitor's browser and, if you offer this language, your storefront will be shown in that language to the visitor. This includes store labels (Ecwid automatic translations) and information about your products and categories (your manual translations):

Kleid_2019-05-14_14-17-12.png

If a visitor's browser is set to a language that you don't offer, they will see your storefront in the main store language.

The translated category and product information appears in:

  • storefront page and product lists;
  • category and product pages;
  • product filters;
  • Order Confirmations;
  • Invoices attached to Order Confirmation notifications;
  • order details within a customer account;
  • product card when you add a single product to a site page:

Translation of product card

To see the store through the eyes of your foreign customers, set the necessary language in your browser and open your store page. Here is the instruction on how to change language in Chrome.

Related articles

International business online: how to start selling globally (blog)
How to optimize your store for a global audience (blog)

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