Kevin Palombo of Happy Desk, a Brussels-based web design firm, said it best in one of his latest articles: “creating a multilingual website hasn’t always been practical, and SEO has often been undermined.”
Palombo would know—working in an officially multilingual country (Belgium has two official languages—French and Belgian Dutch, sometimes referred to as Flemish), his clients are likely to have clients of their own that don’t speak the same mother tongue, even if they were born in the same city.
These days, multinationals and big corporations aren’t the only potential beneficiaries of language localization: even small businesses are finding it necessary to go multilingual. (Your business may even be one of the 6 types that should definitely translate their website, no matter what size you are.)
Palombo’s Happy Desk is just one of many up-and-coming design firms using Webflow as a toolbox, and the results are impressive: the site’s custom animations, fluid transitions, and eye-catching graphics are all viewable in English, French, and Dutch.
Now that they also offer an e-commerce CMS management plan, Webflow allows small businesses to design and run perfectly professional sites without having to outsource the entire process.
Webflow is being used by small business owners and community organizers from France to Sweden to Canada—some of whom are looking to increase their conversion rate by going multilingual.
Let’s take a closer look at some of our favourite Webflow sites using Weglot…
Dropcontact: a fellow French startup
Like Weglot, Dropcontact is based in Paris. Their Webflow-based site features some killer scroll animations, a calmingly coherent two-tone color palette, and, most importantly, a beautifully integrated language-switch button in their main navigation bar.
A digital product, like Dropcontact, knows no borders or shipping fees; it is bound to find users outside its home country—which is why putting the site in English, as well as French, was a smart move.
Wall Street Nacka: street art for a world audience
Wall Street Nacka is an international mural festival held each year in the Swedish town of Nacka, a suburb of Stockholm.
The festival’s aim is to attract street art talent from around the world, and to compete with the reigning king of Swedish mural festivals: Borås’s No Limit Street Art Festival.
Since only about 9 million people in the world are native Swedish speakers, it’s basically essential for internationally-oriented Swedish businesses and events to publish their materials in other languages.
Their Webflow-created site has a contemporary, urban feel, and a cosmopolitan ethos that’s only bolstered by the fact that it’s available in more than one language.
Saturn Packaging: a bilingual site in a bilingual city
Montreal is known for its fundamentally bi-cultural identity. A melting pot of both French and North American influences, it’s known for having a population that is just about equal parts francophone and anglophone.
Saturn Packaging, a Montreal-based packaging utility firm, has embraced its home city’s diversity, all the way down to its website.
Designed using Webflow, their e-commerce site is available in both French and English. (And tant mieux—the province of Québec has cracked down on businesses that don’t respect its bilingual accessibility requirements; U.S.-based clothing retailer Anthropologie learned this the hard way after opening its Montreal store.)
Why go multilingual?
A beautiful website speaks volumes, no matter what the viewer’s native tongue may be; but aesthetics can only go so far in conveying the practical details of a product, service, or event.
Webflow provides a super-ergonomic toolbox for refining the look and feel of your website, but making it accessible to all of your potential viewers is a separate task.
Going multilingual is one way of doing so; if you’re a Webflow user, Weglot can help you with that.
Check out our Webflow integration guide here—and, in the meantime, happy designing/custom-coding/page-building!
Cover image courtesy of @magdalenahoranin via Instagram.