Global Translator Plugin – Reach out to new audience

global translator wordpress plugin reviewReaching out to people seamlessly is one of the prime goals of Internet and blogging. If the language and disabilities are barriers, there are tools and widgets available to make your blog accessible and readable to many people around the world. The Global Translator plugin is one such wonderful plugin that provides your blog’s translated content to a broader audience around the globe.

We had talked about this plugin during the SEO Challenge ’09 competiton whereby several contestants had used this plugin to improve their search visits from various language specific searches. This time around, I thought of investing some time to write about the pros and cons of using this plugin.

How the Global Translator WordPress plugin works?

The plugin can translate your blog posts and pages to over 40 languages and you have the option of using multiple popular language translation engines (such as Babelfish, Google translator etc). This plugin does not do on-the-fly translations but it actually translates the pages offline and keep them under different language folders on your server. For example, if you have a post written in your default blog language, it’s translated versions are kept in 40 different directories as individual pages if you have opted for all the 40 languages.

The installation is pretty straight forward and so is the settings. There is a language selector (neat one that shows flags of the countries) widget that is available for a visitor to opt for a different language view of the current post. The accessibility and simplicity of this widget is really a plus point.

Pros and Cons

The following are some of the good things about this useful plugin.

  • It creates directories and neat permalinks (for posts and pages) for each language and hence in principle the translated page access is very fast and they SEO optimized as well
  • The plugin can improve your search traffic by 15 to 20 percent based on the topics
  • The plugin does not spoil the theme features like search, layout etc while creating translated pages
  • Media objects (images etc) on the pages are not duplicated on the translated directories
  • Global translator does not make structural changes to any WordPress tables not does it store translated information there in
  • Global translator dramatically increases the number of pages indexed by Google which may be a good plus point in the eyes of blog and site graders

Now here is the trade off :

  • The plugin takes ages to translate all your existing pages as it cannot ping the translator services too often
  • During the translation process it can slow down the server drastically
  • Some of your new posts are not translated readily and hence when use clicks on the translate flags it gives an annoying message ‘This page has not been translated yet’ and then redirects to the translator for on-the-fly translation
  • Just like eating up the server CPU time, it can eat up disk space big time as well
  • If you have custom Google search implemented on your blog, it can show multiple language results which will not really help anybody searching within your blog
  • I am yet to figure out whether the translation will work if older posts are edited for some reason
  • I do not know if Google can mark the translated pages as duplicated content in which case it could affect the page ranks of internal pages as well as the domain

You can download the plugin for free from the WordPress plugin directory.

Those who are already experienced in using the plugin may please provide additional feedback to help the readers here.

Happy Blogging!


  1. @Nirmal, yep there are several other options as well (like transposh as mentioned in a comment above). Basically all of them uses translation services such as Google, Babelfish but internally many of them are optimized better.

    I do not think that on demand translation will infringe the AdSense TOS because we are providing just another language as an option to the readers while the blog’s main language remain English.

    Until this plugins came in many people were calling translation services on demand (like you did), the quality of which is the same as what is provided by the plugin 🙂

  2. @Ajith,

    You can solve most of the cons mentioned by you using the Taragana plugin which provides instant translation and does not throw any error unless the translation engine itself is down,

    There is no issue on duplicate content as the same post in different languages is not duplicate according to Google Webmaster central blog.

  3. @ Nirmal
    Though I realize putting up translation widget is not a bad option but certainly not the best.. Because most of the time it will change the entire meaning..

    Meanwhile your idea
    same post in different languages is not duplicate according to Google Webmaster central blog

    Can be utilize in a great way by starting with more blogs on different languages 🙂

  4. @Harsh,
    I agree on the point that translation might change up the meaning, that might be true and its not 100% correct, but guess no one was worried by that part. If you were not interested in translation widget, then you shoulnt have installed it in the first place, now you have to deal with 404 error.

    Yea, you can start different blogs in different languages and webmasters will treat that as Duplicate content. Here is the quote from Google Webmasters blog

    “Though we do offer a handy translation utility, our algorithms won’t view the same article written in English and Spanish as duplicate content. Similarly, you shouldn’t worry about occasional snippets (quotes and otherwise) being flagged as duplicate content.”

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  5. @ Nirmal
    You are right about the duplication issues..
    Right now I’m dealing with lots of 404 errors.. Seems like I need to customize my 404 page to make the maximum out of it….

    Putting up Global translator plugin was a big mistake and luckily I removed it , specially when I realize it is violating Google adsense TOS. 😐

    So you using “Taragana plugin “? Hows it dng for u?
    Are you getting traffic from other engines (Indexing) or it’s only helping to translate the pages into other language?

  6. @Harsh,
    Tell me how is it violating Adsense TOS? Pls explain.

  7. @ Nirmal
    I have already written a post regarding this
    Have a look
    Its because of the placement of advertisement on adsense non supported language.

  8. I started using the Global Translator on 7 of my self-hosted WP sites recently and it has been creating thousands of 404 error pages as seen when I log into my Google Account / Webmaster Tools. I can’t believe that all those error urls are good for my site ranking with Google. I have no affiliation with this, but I’m going to dump the Global Translator and buy this one today and hopefully it won’t have the same problem…

  9. i heard much reviews about this plugin , some same it is good plugin and others say it cause a problems in SEO and some troubles with Google , for me i decide to be away of it because i don’t like to have troubles or doubt with Google .

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  10. I tried it and eventually i went for Transposh.

    • I heard a lot of Transposh but never tried it..Seems like need to get my hand on it…

    • But does Transposh do weird things like causing hundreds of 404 error pages that you can see when you log into your Google Account? I would really like to know. That was the reason I stopped using the Global Translator Plugin. I suspect that the people still using it are only using it because they aren’t aware of the havoc it can wreak because they don’t have a Google Account.

      • Steve another one which I might suggest is taragana translator. When I was facing issues with Global translator plugin, many ppl suggested me for the same. though after complete Fail of Global translator plugin I stopped using it..

        • Are you using the Taragana Translator yourself? Does it create thousands of 404 Error pages like the free Global Translator Plugin did to my sites?

  11. I like the Global Translator plugin i just wish i could get it to do more caching, it seem to not want to cache some page/posts dont know what makes it say hay im going to cache this post but not this page.
    the makers of the plugin dont give any kind od info what soo ever.
    they want you to buy there Global Translator PRO plugin

  12. Hello!
    I think the idea of this plugin is great, but i have the problem, that google doesn’t see the content in the other languages. So i don’t get more traffic.
    I installed the plugin how you say.
    Is it right, that i have only one sitemap for all languages?
    It would be great, if you help me.
    Thanks and greetings, Achim

    • Achim,
      As far as I remember there was a ‘Enable Sitemap Integration’ option or something like that which tells the Google XML sitemap generator to add all language directories and pages to the existing blog sitemap. It’ll definitely slow down the sitemap generation performance though. You might want to keep it a background process (via Google XML sitemap generator options)

  13. I am using transposh, i think is a better option . It can use Google or Babelfish to translate

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