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  • Anders Brohus 174 posts 424 karma points
    Jan 16, 2020 @ 12:37
    Anders Brohus

    Multilingual websites - Umbraco 8

    Hi Our ..

    I'm currently trying to figure out when i should use language variants and when to choose two different trees .. :)

    I can see the good thing about language variants if the sites have identical sitemaps or nearly identical but then i still miss the option to create an new page on an variant with the exact same content as the "original" so i just have to translate :)

    While if the two sites with the same domain have completely different sitemaps then it would just be a big mess in the backoffice because the pages which are are not published in a specific variant will still be visible as grayed out..

    Right now i'm thinking that if the sitemaps are nearly identical then variants is the way to go while if they are different then the "old way" with two trees is a better way to go.

    But what do you think and how do you create multilingual websites?

  • Kevin Jump 1675 posts 10588 karma points MVP 3x c-trib
    Jan 16, 2020 @ 13:29
    Kevin Jump

    Hi Anders,

    Yeah, The wonderful thing about Umbraco is there are many ways to do the same thing - but its also hard to know which one to do!

    Typically I've seen people doing this one of three ways, depending on how their content/organisation works.

    One-To-One using variants

    As you say if the sites in each language are near identical, and the content is managed in the same way then using variants is the way to go.

    the thing to note about variants at the moment is that you can't restrict access by language. You can't, for example, have English, Spanish and french installed but only have English and french on the nodes - so its a bit all or nothing.

    Multiple top-level sites (not variants)

    If the sites are different then multiple sites is still a good way to go - it keeps things separate.

    If you want the navigation to work between sites, make sure you do some relate on a copy when creating them, this will give you a link in the related service between languages so you can (in theory) flip between them,

    A Mix of both,

    This is quite common and I've seen it a lot. Your main sites with your company content might be different in each region, so you have multiple site nodes, but your products are the same globally, so for products you want to use variants. an example structure :

    • Home (En)
    • Home (Fr)
    • Products

    With this approach, you might need to do something clever with either a ContentFinder or Routing to make products appear in each language (e.g the URLs /en/products and /fr/products might take content from the root products node) - but it means you can have quite different content at a company level while still sharing the product language stuff in one place.

    Which one?

    From what I've seen it depends on the site: For small content sites, people tend to go with variants, and once you get to medium/large companies selling things they tend to be using the mixed approach sharing a product tree between languages.

    Outrageous plug - Translation Manager can obviously translate all the content for you :) but it can also help with the node management should you go down the multiple sites root. You can have it create nodes in the language sites when you create them in the master, so while they are different sites they can keep in sync.

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