You may be wondering why, after all our years of virtual friendship, I suddenly disappeared for over two months – no blogging, no visiting, no commenting and barely a Facebook status to be seen. You may have thought I’d forgotten about my virtual friends. Unless, of course, you’re not a virtual friend of mine and only ended up here after Googling 5 Reasons You Can Build A Multilingual Website in WordPress Until You Can’t. Either way, I have answers for you.
Reason 1 – Blogging Doesn’t Pay The Bills
As much as I wish it did, it just doesn’t and that sucks monster moose cock, to be sure. It also means I have to have a day job. And sometimes that day job requires me to do things like build a very complicated, specific type of website on a nearly non-existent budget. Which is surprisingly simple. Until it isn’t.
Reason 2 – There are WordPress plugins for just about everything
This seems like a really fabulous thing until you realise it isn’t. There are thousands and thousands of free WordPress plugins and widgets for you to choose from and if none of the free ones meet your needs, there are thousands more that are ridiculously cheap compared to building a complex website from scratch. Seriously, you want to turn your site into a members-only club? There are 4 kajillion plugins for that. Want to build an e-commerce site to sell your bathtub cheese? No sweat! – yes, pun intended. Only eleventy gazillion of those. And you can spend hours and hours and hours and hours weeding through them all to figure out which ones will work for you. And then it doesn’t.
Reason 3 – Not all plugins play together nicely
I never really minded living in a country/province with two official languages. Until now. My really complicated, specific, low-budget website has to be available to users in both official languages. Again, WordPress has ones of tens of hundreds of farillion language/translation plugins. But most of them hate the plugin that makes my website so complicated and specific. Or maybe the complicated/specific plugin hates them. Either way, a great way to work out the frustration of warring plugins is by sending nasty emails to the mothercheesing liar who told you his plugin was the most comprehensive yet simplest, most user-friendly and completely translatable plugin you could possibly spend your money on. When it isn’t. At. All.
Reason 4 – Sometimes the universe throws you a bone and ends up breaking your face
After multiple setbacks and delaying the website’s launch by several weeks, I finally discovered Transposh, a wonderful free plugin that works with my stupid-ass complicated, specific plugin. Except that it pulls the translations from Google Translate which has such a tragically creative way with words. On the plus side, Transposh allows you to edit the translated words and phrases. All twelvety bazillion of them. And if there should happen to be some text you don’t want translated? No worries. You can simply wrap the text in a simple HTML “no_translate” class or just go ahead and use the shortcode. Hey, there’s even an HTML tag you can use, if you’re into that kind of thing, you sick puppy. Learning about HTML class and shortcode and tags and where they need to go in order to NOT break the internet was really the funnest part of this whole process for me. Never.
Reason 5 – Nothing is perfect
I swear, when I started this post, I had five reasons. It would seem that, like my complicated, specific, multilingual website, I have a few bugs to work out. I don’t even want to think about where I’m going to have to stick the HTML code for that. Anyhow, I’m finally able to enter a WordPress dashboard without sobbing uncontrollably so here I am. Until I’m not.