You’ve installed the Polylang plugin, activated it, and now wondering “what next”?
When you first activate the plugin you’re going to make some mistakes and either duplicate pages, loose the ability to see pages on the site and our personal favourite, all kinds of weird errors which ends with you disabling the plugin entirely.
Stop everything. Understand the way it works quick and you’re set.
Setup languages first. Go to the newly created “Languages” menu item on the WP backend. You will be presented by the Add new languages section.
Firstly, create the main language your site will be in. If your site is in English, create the English language first. You will then be greeted with a notice saying there are zero pages in English and you will be provided by a message to change all existing pages under this language. Do so.
Once you’ve done this, continue to create the other languages you would like to have on your site. The next step is to create the translated versions of the pages you have on your site.
Time to setup the translations per page.
First is first. DO NOT start creating new pages. You may get the message showing above the pages on your site on the WP backend saying “you need to create a translated version of your index (home) page for whichever additional language/s you setup in the steps above. Do this first.
To create translated version of the remaining pages, simply make sure you are on the “Pages” section of your WP backend. Under the pages you will see a new column showing flags of the languages you setup. A tick should show for your main language if you did the step above.
DO create the newly translated pages using “+” symbol. It will load a new page, edit on this page. Read the tips section at the end of this post for more info, but sometimes it’s easier to just create the page title and save to edit later on.
And that’s about it folks…
- When you first click the “+” symbol under the language you want to provide a translated version of the page, we find it best to simply create the page title, save the page and then come back later to edit it using whichever editor of your choice. Many users are using page builders like WPBakery or Elementor and editing the translated page using an editor is only possible once it’s created.
- Since the release of the Gutenberg editor now native for WordPress installs, you may be tempted to go back and try duplicate or create the page from scratch. Don’t do this, as it wont be connected as a translated version of the original page.Instead creating a new page, albeit one way to achieve the translations you want, will simply mean a messy page structure of duplications. Whereas if you use Polylang’s functionality, even though it creates a new page version, it is less cluttered in the WP backend Pages section. Showing instead one page, and a tick under the translated version (languages) of those pages.