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  • Writer's pictureLee Yan Marquez

Multilingual sites with Wix: The Setup

I started taking lessons at today, so in the spirit of bilingualism I will begin to create a version of my site en français.

Thankfully, the non-blog parts of my site don't have much content. I have worked with bilingual sites in Drupal, and it would be interesting to see how they do things chez Wix.

According to this guide, you should be able to translate the following:

  1. Text (in text boxes, menu tabs, on buttons, in lists and grids, etc.)

  2. Images and backgrounds

  3. Links SEO settings

  4. Wix Stores

I'm guessing you should be able to "translate" images for accessibility and also because if your audience resides in 2 different countries, it's necessary to tailor the images on your site so that they are more culturally appropriate.

So to get started on making our site bilingual, we're supposed to go to the click on Multilingual under Settings in the Wix editor. Note: I'm not using the ADI editor at this point. I will update this post with ADI specific information once I get started on a new site.

If you're doing it for the first time, you will be presented with a simple wizard that takes you through specifying your main language, which defaults to English/US. If like me, you decide to click away from the wizard, the wizard becomes part of the floating dashboard.

Change the locale, not the main language if you just want a different kind of English.
Change the locale, not the main language if you just want a different kind of English.

I am in Canada so I will change the locale instead of the main language so that it will still be English - just in a different flavour.

English - Canada locale with formats
English - Canada locale with formats

When you change your locale from the US to Canada, the formats also change. Notably, measurements change from imperial to metric.

screenshot of Add Another Language dialogue

I add another language , selecting French for Language and Canada for Flag.

Here's something I found a little bizarre - even after changing the locale from US to Canada, the flag displayed is still the States'. This makes me think that my update did not save, so I change the locale again only to find that it's set correctly.

Then I realize that the flag is a separate setting, so I have to change that to show my Canadian English bonafides.

Two langauges, one flag
Two languages, one flag

Oops. Now I have two languages but only one flag. I start wondering:

  • Is there a Québecois flag or something close to it that displays a fleur-de-lys?

  • How will the language toggle be displayed?

That depends on which type of language menu you use. If you don't use the default menu that is placed immediately when you activate the Multilingual setting, you can choose a language menu that does not display the flag.

screenshot of available language menus
screenshot of available language menus

However, if you still wanted to show a flag for each language, the choices are limited. For English, you can choose from:

  • Australia

  • Canada

  • South Africa

  • United Kingdom

For French, you can only choose from:

  • Belgium

  • Canada

  • France

so no luck finding a flag with a fleur-de-lys.

I'll leave it to you to choose a French flag, or a UK flag, or a Canadian flag, but a minimalist like me would leave out flags altogether.

Tomorrow, I'll describe how I started adding translations.

#Wix #multilingual #bilingual #french

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