By offering your blog content in just English, you may be missing out on a large percentage of Internet traffic. Non-English languages account for a majority of Internet users. English speaking Internet users account for less than 30% with the rest of the top ten languages that include Chinese, Spanish, Japanese, German, French, Portuguese, Korean, Italian, and Arabic accounting for another 50%; rest of the world languages accounting for the remaining. Although many non-English speakers read and write English fluently (e.g. Indians), the majority prefer their native language. Many of my Chinese colleagues prefer to surf the Net or even have their OS in Chinese, likewise for Brazilians who prefer Portuguese. I am disappointed that none of the Indian languages make up a significant percentage.
I was on the lookout for a nifty translation tool that would offer content in other languages yet not deviate much from the primary language i.e. English. The Global Translator Plugin is perfect as it dynamically translates my blog in nine other languages by using the Google Translation Engine. You can check out the different languages by clicking on the appropriate flag at the top of the sidebar.
I am not sure if Google would index my content in these languages as well thus making it searchable in the respective regional search engines. If it does, it means my blog would be open to a whole new set of Internet surfers which is good for my blog stats ego as well as ad revenue (if they click). The Yahoo contextual ads are unfortunate in English. It would be perfect if those could be translatable too.
Anyway, æ¬¢è¿Ž, welkom, bienvenue, Willkommen, benvenuto, boa vinda, í™˜ì˜ to my Chinese, Dutch, French, German, Italian, Portuguese, and Korean readers.
Update: Damn! It seems the comments stopped working after I added this plugin. I keep getting the following error message when I try commenting:
Fatal error: Call to a member function on a non-object in /…/wp-includes/query.php on line 10
Any WordPress techies know what’s going on? It seems to work fine on my other blog. Also, is it a Firefox issue? I have disabled the plugin for now. Comments from my regular readers are more important, right?