How To Create a Multilingual SharePoint Site

Topics: SharePoint Multilingual Features, SharePoint Site

Written by Alex K Joseph

Everyone loves to read content in their preferred language. When you have a diverse community in your organization, it's necessary to ensure that your content is available in various languages. Today, SharePoint Intranets are very common, and Microsoft SharePoint is equipped with an excellent multilingual feature, allowing users to configure SharePoint Communication Sites in multiple languages. Multilingual SharePoint sites serve to support teams by offering content that everyone can read in their preferred language. In today's blog, we share a step-by-step tutorial demonstrating how to create multilingual sites in SharePoint Online, as well as how to translate your SharePoint content to different languages.

How To Enable Multilingual Features in SharePoint Online

Complete the following steps to enable multilingual features in SharePoint Online.

  • Go to the Communication site that you'd like to translate
  • Click Settings and choose Site information
    Settings - Site information
  • Choose View all settings to go to Site settings
    view all site settings
  • From the Site administration section, click Language settings
    Site administration - language settings
  • The site languages page will open
  • Toggle Enable pages and news to be translated into multiple languages to the On position
    Enable pages and news to be translated into multiple languages
  • Select the preferred languages from the drop-down that appears
  • We are choosing French here
    Choose preffered languages from the drop down list
  • You can also assign a user as a Translator in the space next to the added language
    Assign a translator and click save
  • Click Save
  • Now you can navigate to the site pages, where the option for Translation with an associated language drop-down menu is available
    Translation option and language selection options appear

How To Create a Page for a Specific Language

Now that you have added a new language to your page and have assigned a user to translate the page, we are going to demonstrate how to create a multilingual site in SharePoint online.

  • Go to the news post or page you wish to translate to a new languageLets translate this page to french now.
  • Click Translation 
  • A Translation pane will open on the right side of the page
  • Click Create next to the language you added
  • It is French in this example
    Click on translation and choose create under French
  • A new page for the French version will be created, and a translation request will be sent to the translator, along with links to the default page and the French page created
  • The translation request email will look like the following:
    Start translating button

How The Translation Process Works

  • The translator can proceed with the translation process once they receive the translation request email
  • The translator can click the Start translating button redirect to the page and start translating its content
  • Click Edit to get started with the content editing process
    edit to start translation message
  • Update the title and page content with the specified language translations and click Post news or Update 
    Translate the content to French and click on Post News
  • You will see that the Available languages dropdown is now showing English (default language) and French
    English and French Language versions are now available

How To Configure the Multilingual SharePoint Online Site Name, Navigation, and Footer

Similarly, you can also update the translations for site name, navigation, and footer. Here is how.

  • Click Settings and choose Site information
  • Under Site name, click Translate site name
    translate site information options
  • In the next window, update the French translation of the site name and click OK
    Enter French translation fo the site name
  • You can do the same for translating the site description
  • Click Save
  • To update the menu options the same way, click Edit next to the menu options
    Edit menu by click on edit
  • Click the ellipses next to the menu options and choose Edit
    Click on ellipses next to menu options and click edit
  • From the pop-up window that opens, click Translations under the Display name
    menu options - translation
  • Update the content in the next window and click OK
  • Do the same for all menu options and click Save
    Click on Save
  • The footer items can also be updated in the same manner

Things To Keep in Mind with SharePoint Translation Services

You can also edit the translated versions of a page if required. Here is how.

  • Go to the Site contents page and choose Site pages
    Go to site contents - site pages
  • The language page versions will be saved in folders of the specific pages
  • Short names will be used for each language
  • Our French translated page is stored in the folder "fr"
    Site pages - language folders
  • Go to the folder, select the page, and click Delete at the top menu or by clicking the ellipses next to the file name
    language folders - delete

Additional Facts: SharePoint Translation Features

  • As of now, the page translation feature is only available on communication sites
  • Translations can only be configured manually
  • Once the page is translated from the translation request, it will automatically be made available to the users who prefer that language
  • Personal language and region settings are considered when a displayed language is chosen
  • The site name, time, and navigation are shown per the user’s language preferences
  • When you choose a language to be displayed from the dropdown, that preference will last for only that browser session, and it applies to all pages on that site

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Try out the SharePoint translation services and share your experience with us. If you have any queries, please feel free to comment below. Have a good day.

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