How To Translate Joomla! Website

How To Translate Joomla! Website

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When it comes to complexity, Joomla! can be placed somewhere between nice and easy WordPress (that we already discussed) and comprehensive and advanced Drupal. But what about its multilingual aspect? Is there an easy way to translate Joomla website?

Easy, Yet complex

We can all agree that it is one of the most popular CMSs among programmers, mainly because it allows you to build pretty advanced websites, offering even administrative panel and the ability to add different kinds of content. And better, you can post articles, create different website pages, and also establish a web store and sell online via eCommerce Plugins.

The truth is, if you don’t want to create a website from a scratch, you can simply choose Joomla as a CMS to power your website on it and run it with practically whatever your preference is, according to your or your client’s global business.

Complex, Yet Convenient

By using a CMS like Joomla, you can easily tweak a website content, publish a new article or a page without having any advanced technical and coding knowledge that is usually needed to create a website.
 Because it’s such a popular CMS (it’s completely free and open-source), you can also download and install Joomla in the language of your choice, which solves already a lot of practical issues as the majority of popular languages is covered. This means that you don’t need much to translate Joomla website.

If you want to switch your Control Panel to a different language, installing a new language pack takes literally a few seconds, giving you an option to choose the language you want for your control panel when logging in. They certainly did think about not sweating the small stuff!

Managing Multilingual Websites

The good news is that 1.6 version of Joomla! includes a built-in language manager and a language switcher. This feature makes creating a site in different languages possible without having to use external components, which was the case in previous versions. With no doubts Joomla! has been improving through with several versions including various improvements and additions.

Because of the convenience and improvements, there is a very intuitive, native way of handling multilingual websites to Joomla. The best news is that you don’t even need to install a plugin to do it. Because it’s so integrated into its structure, you can choose the website language versions already during the installation process.

You can see a demo on how a multilingual website powered by Joomla looks like -> here. Also! Check out this tutorial on how to set up a multilingual website (if you didn’t already).

Setting Up A Multilingual Website Is Easy!

Fortunately, it really doesn’t take long to start adding content in multiple languages either, giving you an option to publish an article in a chosen language, too!

What you need to do:

1. Install a language pack
2. Create new menu items and assign language-specific home pages to the new menus.
3. Connect menu links to their translated counterparts
4. Finalize the new menus by adding menu models
5. Add a language switcher to your website

Well, we have to admit that managing content in multiple languages is an out-of-the-box experience with Joomla.

There is a third party for that too, but they usually have more comprehensive tools for managing large multilingual websites which can be challenging using the native Joomla multilingual settings.

For each content element in Joomla! like menu items, articles, and content modules (categories mainly) Joomla allows you to specify whether they apply to all languages or a specific language.  So it is actually possible to achieve the greatest degree of flexibility, by duplicating the elements- at the cost of having numerous items, too.

Extracting Your Content Using the jDiction Extension


Installing third-party extensions to eventually translate Joomla is also fairly easy:
1. Download your extension in a .zip file
2. Head over to Extensions from the top menu in the admin panel
3. Select Manage and Install.
4. Upload your .zip file and simply click on Upload & Install

Using a free third-party plugin like jDiction websites allows you to extract all of your content into files compatible with Text United (like XLIFF or CSV).

jDiction integrates perfectly into existing Joomla installations and extends them with its own language selection module and direct integration into the administration interface.  This means no cumbersome formatting, reformatting, duplicate and paste functions, just extract, translate, and import back.

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