Best WordPress Translation Plugin? WPML vs Polylang vs Weglot vs TranslatePress

Contents

    • How you translate your content with TranslatePress
    • What is the main TranslatePress translation interface like?
    • How much of your content does TranslatePress let you translate?
    • Does TranslatePress create SEO friendly translated content?
    • How much does TranslatePress cost?
  • Which WordPress translation plugin is right for you?

How you translate your content with TranslatePress

TranslatePress makes it easy to use all three translation styles.

When you first install the plugin, it will default to manual translation. But if you go into the settings, you can enable automatic translation via Google Translate (you will need a Google Translate API key to do this).

The automatic translate option will only translate strings that haven’t already been manually translated, which is a nice touch to avoid overwriting your manual work. And you’re also free to go in and manually edit these translations later on.

Finally, with the Translator Accounts add-on, you can also create dedicated translator accounts that can manage your site’s translations from the front-end.

The only notable exception is the lack of a direct integration with professional translation services like the other three plugins.

What is the main TranslatePress translation interface like?

TranslatePress has a pretty unique method for translating your site. It basically uses an interface that’s identical to the real-time WordPress Customizer.

To translate your content, you just hover over the desired string and click the Pencil icon. Then, you can enter your translation in the sidebar:

translate press interface

This interface isn’t limited to post content, either. You can also use it to edit theme strings, widgets, and more. For example, TranslatePress has no problem picking up content from the Hestia custom homepage feature:

translate press custom theme

How much of your content does TranslatePress let you translate?

TranslatePress’ goal is to let you translate everything on your page. That means:

  • Taxonomies
  • Menu items
  • Theme and plugin strings
  • Page builder content
  • Shortcode outputs
  • URL slugs
  • WooCommerce products
  • etc.

I ran it through another test using a page that I built with Elementor and again had no issues translating my content:

translatepress elementor

Does TranslatePress create SEO friendly translated content?

Like the other three plugins, TranslatePress creates SEO-friendly translated content, though you’ll need the SEO Pack Addon to do everything perfectly.

Like Weglot, TranslatePress only seems to give you the option to use subfolders for languages. Again – not a big deal, but something to consider if you prefer subdomains.

Like the others (again!), TranslatePress automatically changes the menu and widget links to create a fully crawlable version of your translated site. There’s also an option to force rewrite in-content links to go to their respective language automatically, which is something you have to do manually with WPML/Polylang.

And with the SEO Pack Addon, you’re able to translate:

  • URL slugs
  • Page title and description
  • Image alt text
  • Facebook Open Graph tags

For example, with the SEO Pack Addon installed, you’re able to translate the page title that you set with something like Yoast SEO:

translatepress yoast seo

How much does TranslatePress cost?

The core TranslatePress plugin is free and listed at WordPress.org.

To get access to the SEO Pack Addon and more, there are also three paid plans starting at $79:

translatepress pricing

Which WordPress translation plugin is right for you?

These plugins are all popular and well-respected, so rather than trying to recommend a specific WordPress translation plugin, I’m just going to lay things out on a spectrum.

On one end, you have Polylang which focuses on primarily backend, manual translation management.

On the other end, you have Weglot which gives you a cloud interface and automatic translation (that you can manually refine).

And then there are WPML and TranslatePress somewhere in the middle. Both plugins let you choose between starting from manual translations or automatic translations. The latter also gives you visual translation editing that stays inside your WordPress interface.

Which is right for you? I don’t think I can answer that. Translation is a very site-specific thing, so you’ll need to consider the nitty-gritty details of each plugin. But at this point, I hope you have enough knowledge to pick the best WordPress translation plugin for your specific situation.

Don’t forget to join our crash course on speeding up your WordPress site. With some simple fixes, you can reduce your loading time by even 50-80%:

Layout and presentation by Karol K.

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