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Think through translated or regional content

When operating in more regions or using more languages, serving content in several languages is crucial to support sales and build better relationships with their audience.

All content is not applicable in all cases. An insurance company cannot offer an English-speaking-only website when coming to a Spanish-speaking market. Similarly, car brands have dealerships in many regions using the same language, yet each dealership can have different promotions and deals. In many cases, it's a combination of both. 

Also, not all of your content is relevant to all markets. You probably want to pick the right content only. Customizing the presented content definitely goes beyond just a translation.

Table of contents

    Key points

    • Content item variants are a versatile way to adjust content for different audiences. Use them for different languages, regions, or both.
    • You can extend Kontent for third-party translation services, whether they provide human or machine translations. Manual translations are available out of the box.
    • Don't forget to go through your role, workflow, collection settings to ensure they're still valid after adding regional content. 

    1. Decide what is relevant for your company

    For different content in different areas, the most effective way is to use content item variants. Variants were introduced to offer multilingual content in your projects as that's the typical use case, and that's why most of the materials will talk about them in the translation context. However, their usage is universal, and they work well also in other scenarios.

    In specific situations, using collections can be more suitable. They will be further extended and eventually, they should replace using variants for these scenarios.

    Since roles and the workflow will most likely be affected by this decision, think about your multilingual or regional content during or right after you configure them.

    Adjust content for different regions

    One of the perks of variants is that the content inside them doesn't need to be the same. For example, when your Japanese market has a holiday, which you want to use for promotions on your website, or when you just want to feature different testimonials there.

    For this use case, you can create a variant of the home page. It will have the same structure in general, as variants still use the same content type as the template, yet each variant works with the content differently. For example, you can use components built for changing the webpage layout.

    Diagram of a layout modeled with a voice and tone

    When changing the layout, model it semantically like voice and tone

    Each variant goes through workflow separately. With this, you can track translations in different languages, schedule the start of promotion in different regions to different dates or times, or just see which dealership or branch has the content already adjusted and published.

    Translate content for different regions

    If you're expanding or already operating in different countries or language regions, you can use Kontent for your multilingual requirements. Both automated and manual translations are available with Kontent.

    Automated translations

    Kontent is extensible with any third-party translation service that has an API, so automated translations are not a problem at all. You can connect both human or machine translation software.

    For this, create a dedicated workflow step, for example, Translation. The step will serve as a trigger for the automatic translation process. The data will be sent for translation and the variants will be updated with content in relevant languages.

    Technical examples of integrating automated translations

    The following articles describe how to translate content using Microsoft’s Translator Text Cognitive ServiceOpens in a new window automatically without anyone needed to copy and paste any content.

    Manual translations

    Kontent is prepared out of the box for manual translations. When creating a variant in another language, you can prefill it with the content from the original text. If this isn't sufficient, you can open two different browser windows with different variants next to each other and translate that way.

    Since the translation is manual, you can use the workflow to track every variant's status separately.

    Divide content for different departments

    If you have multiple departments in your company, the preferred way is to create collections for them. Collections allow people in the departments to filter out content not relevant to them. Soon, you're going to be able to limit who can access which collection.

    You can also combine variants with collections. With that, create multiregional content within multiple departments.

    2. Create the desired languages in Kontent

    Now that you know what multiregional requirements you have, create the languages, regions, or different segments as languages in Kontent.

    Once you set up additional languages, switch your language to see different variants of your content. As you can limit access to different roles, using variants can also help your creators to focus only on those variants that they need to work with.

    Even if you use automated translation, Project managers will have access to the translated content. But think about whether it makes sense to give anyone else from your staff access to it if a change is necessary.

    3. Adjust your previous configuration

    Whether you use manual or automated translations, we recommend going through the roles, workflows, and collections you created for your project and verify that they still apply and adjust them if needed.

    Usually, adjusting access to content items in specific languages can require changes in the role permissions. Similarly, translation typically leads to adding a new step to the project's workflow while department needs lead to adjusting collections.

    Similarly, if you haven't created content types for changing the layout and you want to have that, adjust your content model accordingly.

    What's next?

    Incorporating translated or regional content completes the whole process of preparation for collaboration and the main changes to the content model, collections, roles, the workflow. The next step is to focus on the actual team collaboration among content creators.