Hi there! We are currently building a Shopify solution with Langify app EN + FR.
We are thinking of using subdomains for both languages:
i.e. FR.mystorename.ca and EN.mystorename.ca
We know today that URLs are unique for each product/post/page, even for multilingual site (apart from the subdomain). I'm wondering, would that be possible (via the custom URL and handle editor), and more importantly, SEO-friendly, to name the product/post/page in both languages, inside the url?
So both languages would benefit from having a bilingual URL... Are we getting into trouble?
Thanks in advance! Best regards,
Good question Mike.
I have started to work on the SEO of a Shopify Plus store who has a lot more than 2 stores. They migrated to Plus last year and I believe they had a plummet (50% over several months!) in organic traffic due to not considering this.
Google's recommendation is to not mix language as it makes for a poorer user experience. An oldie from Cutts: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=FPiALaxDr6E. If you provide a store in French, use French throughout the website.
Use Weglot for translations which is a lot cleaner than other apps out there.
The difficult part in truly keeping to different languages in Shopify is its inability to easily associate the same pages in different languages for hreflang tags. If you use the hreflang tag from my SEO guide, you will get a boatload of 404s because the URL handles will be different which Google will not like. If you use different URLs, which is best for SEO, you will need to manually map pages using metafields to create your own hreflang tags.
Dallas here from the Social Care Team. That is great that you are looking to support both languages. That really does help with the accessibility of your store. For what you're wanting to accomplish, there are a few options that you can look into:
One option that you can do, if you're looking to have multiple websites for your supported languages is to look into purchasing country-specific URLs (mywebsite.fr, etc.). However, when you do that you will be required to make a new Shopify account for each language. If you are on the Shopify plan or above you will get the additional stores for a lower price. You will just have to make sure that the only difference between your two stores is the language and nothing else.
When you have a different store for each language you'll be able to write your entire store in it's dedicated language. Therefore, when the specific domain is clicked it will show the site in either French or English, respectively. For example, mywebsite.fr would show in French (if you wrote the site in French). To go along with what Joshua was saying, this will be the best option to keep your SEO in peak condition.
This link here will show you how to change the checkout language if you were to choose this option.
With Shopify, you are also able to create URL redirects as well as subdomains. However, you'd still be connecting this to your original domain.
If you are looking to support multiple languages with your store but don't want to pay for a different site for each language, the easiest thing to do would be to get a multi-lingual app (like Languify, like you have done) and then create a subdomain (fr.mywebite.com) or a URL redirect (mywebsite.com/fr). Both are possible inside Shopify. Just remember that your customers will be directed to your primary domain (mywebsite.com) first. They will have to select what language they want your site to be translated to by going to the top corner of your store and selecting the language with the app.
There is no real benefit between a URL redirect or a subdomain, so it is just personal preference.
To create a URL redirect you will want to go to:
Online Store > Navigation > URL Redirect in your Store Admin
This link gives step instruction guide that will be able to give you more information.
To create a subdomain you will want to click Online Store > Domains in your Store Admin. Then for the domain that you want to add this onto, you will click Manage, scroll down to Subdomains and add a subdomain there.
These are some great options that you can do to showcase different languages with your store. Whatever you choose you won't get into trouble, there will just be some that will be better for traffic than others. I gave a lot of information here so if you would like me to clarify anything or if you have any questions you can just respond to this forum post. If you would like to contact our live support we have Gurus here to help you around the clock.
We using Langify and managing 2 languages (English domain.com and French fr.domain.com) for our Canadian Website.
I set my website preference (www.domain) in Google search Console.
Since we have a subdomain I can't activate Shopify redirection. When I'm scanning my website I get this error www / non-www page redirects are not configured. How can I set 301 server-side redirect properly my Shopify multi languages website?
If you are using a subdomain you won’t need to use a redirection. You will only need to use one. Just remember that if you are trying to connect a subdomain it won’t connect to a different store.
All of the domain adjustments that you set up in your account will connect to that one account. ie. fr.domain.com & domain.com will both connect to the same store (domain.com). Your customers will then have to change the language themselves using the Languify app.
I’m not quite sure what you mean by creating proper 301 server-side redirects. Can you elaborate a bit on that? Screenshots of where you’re seeing the error might help me with additional context. Thank you!
If I am not quite understanding what you mean please let me know.
I already added in Shopify a French Canadian subdomain (fr.illaminous.com) for my store (illaminous.com). It's working fine with Langify.
It's not the best practice. Best practice use a server-side 301 redirect to my preferred domain.
Are you able to clarify a bit more for me?
You can use GTranslate which supports sub-domains for languages (es.shop.com, fr.shop.com) and can translate your URLs too without the need to setup 2 separate stores. You can even have top country level domains for better SEO results on country level (shop.es, shop.it, etc).
Here is a Shopify store with GTranslate: https://www.mimiholliday.com