SDL Tridion blueprinting for multilingual websites

By | December 15, 2008

Extending your online reach by targeting local audiences in their own language without compromising global brand consistency. This is what Tridion blueprinting is all about:

  • Effectively managing your global message and allow local content editors to adapt and extend that message to incorporate cultural differences and local messages. This will maximize your impact on local markets and still keep the costs manageable.
  • It enables reuse of web applications, cms templating and web design, for each sub site you create. This shortens the time to market for a new website considerably. A good example is the Equens Merger where 6 websites were created in record time.
  • Content can be reused over different websites and channels. There are however some limitations to reusing content in Tridion which need to be considered when creating a Tridion blueprint (todo write about limitations).

In my previous article I showed an elementary blueprint which contained only one language and one website. The picture below shows what the blueprint will look like when an additional language is added.

As you can see I added two more publications to the blueprint. The first, “Content Dutch”, inherits from the “Content English” publication. In fact the Dutch publication contains an exact copy of the English content. The next step should be the translation of the content to the Dutch language and the addition of e.g the Dutch contact information for your organization.

The second publication inherits from the “Frontend Design” publication which contains all the styles and templates which are already used in the English website. In it also inherits the Dutch content and thus forms the Dutch website.

As you can see the only substantial effort, for creating a website in a new language, is in translating the content. Even this process can be automated by using the Tridion translation manager. After the content is translated it can be easily maintained by using the work flow capabilities of Tridion.

The advantage of inheriting templating and design is that future changes to the English website will automatically be implemented into the Dutch website. No more copies and different versions of your website just one brand and one message tailored for the local audience.

The ability to effectively manage multilingual websites is the true strength of Tridion. It is in fact the sole reason why Tridion was created.

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