Are you still editing PO files?

Author: Categories: WP Tutorials
Updated: September 6, 2018
Are you still editing PO files?

Like probably most people our there before we started creating WordPress themes we were making websites for our local clients. We were using different CMS systems like Website Baker and WordPress. We also used Drupal for a couple of projects. Most websites were done from scratch that means we made a design that was approved by our client and then we coded that design into CMS. Pretty long and not very effective process.

For one project that had very tight budget we decided to use a 3rd party theme. I was excited that we managed to squeeze nice looking website into the budget. Customer was happy when they saw how nice their website will look for such a low price. It was a Friday meeting, we agreed that the website will be ready next week. No big deal, we’ll install the theme and create some basic website structure for them. I was happy that we made a deal and went for a Friday night pint.

No big deal, we’ll install the theme and create some basic website structure for them.

As you probably guess it wasn’t that easy at all 😉 We purchased the theme, installed it pretty quickly. Created some basic structure – that can be done really in a few minutes. I met with the customers the day after and showed them their new shiny website. When they saw it they were not as amazed as I thought they’ll be because most of the backend was in English. WordPress itself was translated into Slovak language, but theme parts were not. They couldn’t administer the theme.

They were not as amazed as I thought they’ll be.

“No problems, we’ll translate it for you in no time” – I said and we agreed on the next meeting. I got back to the office and we started looking for PO file. Luckily theme had it in some folder structure so we got into it and started translating all the texts. It took us good few hours to translate all the bits and pieces. When we uploaded the file to the server we realized that not everything is fully translated. You know what’s next. Opening PHP, HTML and also JS files to find missing words. It took us almost 3 days to translate the theme. What’s worst is that due to the fact that we edited probably every single file in this theme, we couldn’t easily update it to the next version.

It took us almost 3 days to translate the theme.

“There’s no way we’ll do it again” – I said. My dream was to get a theme already in Slovak language, install it and use it straight away. It all started few years ago with this one single project. I had it in my head all the time since then. I have to say – I’m very happy that we made it happen. All our WordPress themes now are already localized to several languages. You can now install the theme and edit it in your own native language right away. For instance if you have your WordPress in German language and upload our theme, it switches to German automatically 😉 There’s no need to open poedit, no need to worry about future updates and missing translations. No need for additional WPML costs.

You can now install the theme and instantly edit it in your own native language.

What about you? How do you handle theme translations? Are you still editing PO files? Are you doing all administration still in English?


Comments (4)

  1. Sove

    Hi, Martin!

    If you’re interested in software localization tools that can help you translate .po files more easily, I would suggest you had a look at the collaborative translation platform

    It’s an online platform where you can bring your own localization team to translate software strings. You can seriously improve the localization workflow with such a localization tool, while also automating parts of it.

      1. Zlatko

        Thanks for feedback! Feel free to check out short video tutorial or buy theme with AIT languages plugin – here how does it work:
        Have a nice day, Zlatko.

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