With increasing globalization, consumers are being exposed to products and services from other countries and want to have the opportunity to either buy products or experience services from other parts of the world.
Offering a website experience in multiple languages exposes a website to a broader audience, increasing its competitiveness.
Hence more and more stores are becoming multilingual. A multilingual store is an online store that is understandable to customers from different countries. A multilingual store caters to the needs of international customers in their preferred language.
Best shopping carts for multilingual stores
At this point, it might be wise to consider the multilanguage functionality of your e-commerce store right at the outset. Since this feature is going to become increasingly important in the future, it's wise to consider it when you develop your store website.
Experts advise store owners to start with two languages so major changes won't be necessary later on.
The e-commerce platform that you choose is a crucial factor. Most established e-commerce platforms have multilingual functionalities that enable store owners to reach consumers anywhere in the world.
Below we discuss some of the best platforms for multi-language e-commerce websites.
If you built your store on Shopify, you are already halfway to reaching a large number of people. Shopify is used by merchants in 175 countries, even in far-flung places like Kyrgyzstan, Turks, San Marino, and Djibouti, according to Builtwith.
To have a multilanguage store, you can use a Shopify theme with more than one language option. These themes include translations of all the text content in your online stores, such as contact information, cart, and checkout information.
Alternatively, you can add your own translations by installing Shopify's Translate & Adapt app, or by using a third-party app.
More than 267,000 Magento 1 & 2 stores are live on the internet, supported by 300,000 developers worldwide. The open-source platform is a good choice for a multi-lingual store.
Magento comes in English by default, including the admin panel and storefront. If you want to translate your Magento store, you’ll need to install and enable different language packs to apply additional languages.
Magento language packs are free and cover almost all languages. You need to install a different language pack for each language you intend to have on your site.
Woocommerce is an e-commerce plugin for WordPress, which runs almost half of the web, powering 43% of all websites on the internet. WooCommerce itself holds 23% of the top one million websites.
According to Statista, WooCommerce boasts a 37% share of all eCommerce websites.
WooCommerce uses WordPress translation plugins, of which the three best are Polylang, Weglo, and TranslatePress.
BigCommerce hosts 49,907 live e-commerce websites and has a market share of approximately 0.18% of the top one million hosted websites, according to statistics by Builtwith.com.
SimilarTech’s statistics have shown 30 thousand unique domains use BigCommerce, which is almost half a per cent of all websites. BigCommerce is the platform for the big names of e-commerce businesses like Sony, Razer, WND, and Vivino.
BigCommerc mainly uses Stencil Framework to enable multi-language websites and stores, but also uses Localizer and Weglot.
Multilanguage store migration - the peculiarities explained
Multilanguage store migration is affected by the type of software used, whether it is open-source or a SaaS solution.
SaaS solutions are easy to implement, and the initial costs are low. In addition, some of them have out-of-the-box translation services and don't charge extra for integration with translation service providers.
However, over time a SaaS solution can prove to be an expensive choice. Also, when it comes to migrating the website away from a SaaS solution, the content migration may end up being more complex and costly.
For these reasons, WordPress Multisite and WPML-based solutions may be preferable. They are more affordable, and the translated content migration may be less complex.
Best plugins for multilanguage store migration
To build a multilingual site with multiple translations, you can use a WordPress translation plugin like TranslatePress.
TranslatePress can support up to 221 languages and is very easy to use. With TranslatePress, it is easy to translate your website quickly. It works with any theme or plugin and is SEO friendly.
What makes TranslatePress so great is that you can see your translation in real time on the front end.
In addition, you can speed up things with Google Translate, since TranslatePress allows Google Translate API integration. If a translation is inaccurate, you can fix it manually afterwards.
TranslatePress is an open-source solution, GPL and self-hosted, your annual license will ensure you get updates, new features, and support.
WPML (WordPress Multilingual Plugin) enables the multilingual website, allowing website owners to use the same WordPress installation to create content in many different languages.
Launched way back in 2007, WPML is the main multilingual plugin on WordPress, with around a million sites using it. WPML:
- Allows the translation of all site elements, including posts, pages, custom post types, menus, widgets, and more.
- Is compatible with many top themes and plugins, including Yoast SEO, Elementor, Divi, Gravity Forms, and WooCommerce.
- Supports full SEO optimization.
- Facilitates the translation of the contents of your online store created with WooCommerce.
Search engine optimization will help search engines to understand your website’s structure and ensure online visitors land on the right translation.
Polylang is a WordPress plugin that you can use to create a multilingual website. It is one of the most popular multilingual plugins for WordPress, with more than 700,000 websites using it. It is free and open-source software.
With Polylang, it is straightforward to create a multilingual WordPress site. It allows you to add as many languages as you want and automatically generates the necessary language files. Polylang also allows you to translate your content into different languages.
With Polylang, each page can be properly optimized for the target language, by adding title tags, meta descriptions, etc.
Weglot is a complete e-commerce translation solution used by Shopify, for Shopify, Shopify Plus, BigCommerce, WooCommerce, Magento, and others.
The Weglot e-commerce website translation software can translate your website into over 100 languages. A translation takes less than 5 minutes.
Weglot offers two layers to its translation capabilities. The first layer makes use of machine translation and automation to speed things up. The second layer involves the use of Weglot’s post-editing features to ensure the quality of the translations.
Weglot also ensures that your store is properly indexed on Search Engines and SEO optimized.
Migrating multilanguage stores via the Cart2Cart tool
Cart2Cart supports multilingual migration across different carts. The Data Import via Cart2Cart is automatic, fast and error-free.
The service supports multiple language transfers and does an accurate migration from the old to the new store. Website visitors can surf the e-commerce website in their language of choice and conduct their orders with ease.
Consult this table to see which Multiple Language Migrations are supported Cart2Cart.
To ensure the shopping cart migration preserves your Source Cart’s multiple languages, you must first add and configure the corresponding languages in your Target Cart before the data transfer.
Also, you must ensure that each language has an identical ISO code on both the Source and Target cart.
Cart2Cart also conducts complete store migrations. If you want to migrate your store to another platform, Cart2Cart can take care of it for you in a secure and safe manner.