A client of mine was running their business in multiple geographic locations and they needed help to make their website service all of their markets seamlessly. This is a case study on how I did this.
What They Wanted
They were running their business in multiple territories. USA, UK, Australia and New Zealand and they wanted an easy way to display territory specific copies of their posts and pages both for content management simplification and for their site visitors.
They wanted to consolidate the three sites they currently supported into one.
The solution for his was a little out of the box, I used a multiple language plugin called WPML. This is usually used to display content in different languages but instead of installing multiple copies of the same copy in different langues.
How It Works
WPML give you the ability to store multiple versions of the same post or page and display it according to a language ( or in this case territory) selected by your site visitor .
An example; the contact page, we had three versions, it contained address, telephone and a Google map for each regional office in New York, London and Sydney. There were also three contact form 7 forms to send to the appropriate staff in each region.
This is a very simple way to manage what used to be three complex websites with just one site and three copies of the content. My client now manages one set of updates, one set of themes and plugins, a great time saving and a neat way to ensure site visitors get the correct content.
I’ve created a video showing the multiple language setup here, not quiet the multiple territories but you will get a feel for what the plugin can do.
I also took advantage of the location detection features of WPML. It looks at your IP address and browser location settings and makes a best guess as to a visitors location.
The appropriate local site is selected and displayed.
Some Of The Challenges
Here are some of the challenges I was able to overcome:
- Images with currency – some of the images used had US dollar amounts on them, we needed GBP and AUD NZD images too. WPML allows you to translate or territorialise images so the correct one
- Home page slider – the home page slider used American english for some words, but in the UK and Australasian sliders that was not appropriate, so we were able to translate and host multiple sliders
- Multiple english versions – I was able to setup three versions of english on the site en_US en_GB and en_AU and treat them as three different languages thereby setting up three different territories.
It’s Not Just A Blog
There are dozens of other applications WordPress can be used for over and above a blogging platform, and here is yet another one. Are you using WordPress in an unusual fashion that would make a good case study let me know.
When you think out of the box a little, there are plugins out there you can re-appropriate to do unusual jobs.
If you want help creating a multiple territory website, contact me from my WordPress technical support page and get a no obligation quote.
Next up I’ll write a very similar case study on running a multiple currency on-line shop using some of the same tools and techniques.
Image by stevensnodgrass