Integral to great support for a global business is ensuring they have access to help and documentation regardless of the language they speak. But manually translating all your content is a lot of effort, and one that most companies don’t have the resources for. That’s why we’ve introduced Machine Translation for Vanilla’s Knowledge Base. This is a big feature, so we want to give a bit more context around what it is and address some questions.
What is machine translation and how does it work?
Machine translation is software that automatically translates text from one language to another. There are a couple requirements to get this up and running:
Enable Vanilla’s Knowledge Base
Subscribe to one of our available machine translation service providers, Google Translate or DeepL Translator
Once machine translation is enabled you can auto-magically translate your KB articles and support the most popular languages of your user base without having to do any manual work - easy as that!
Can I machine translate my community posts?
We currently have no plans at this time to bring machine translations over to community posts - and there’s a good reason for it.
Our philosophy is that Knowledge Base articles are generally more formal and matter of fact, so they are much easier to translate. Community conversations often contain slang and jargon and you just can’t guarantee that this will translate well via a machine translation service. This can lead to misunderstandings and a potentially poor member experience.
Of course, supporting customers in multiple languages is complex and goes far beyond translation. Adrian Speyer does a deep dive on this topic, so if you have or are working towards a multilingual community, be sure to check out his webinar: Considerations when Building a Multilingual Community, to learn more!
Where do I find more information?
If you don’t already have Vanilla KB enabled but are interested in using it, reach out to your CSM. For more information on this feature, check out the release notes.