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Do we need a bilingual website in Quebec?

Published on Thursday 27 January 2022

Today, having a website is a must, everyone knows it. It is an absolute necessity to promote one's products, services or even causes. Transactional websites are slowly becoming the norm in order to take orders and payments online. If your business is based in Quebec, it is normal to wonder if your website should be bilingual. The following article will give you information about the benefits of having a bilingual website.


Business Based in Quebec


First, it is important to understand that if your business is based in Quebec, the law requires that your website be in French first. According to section 52 of Bill 101, the website of a business with a Quebec address must be at least as complete in French as in English. This is a provision that is sometimes overlooked, but which must be taken into account in order to comply with the law. It is a matter of protecting the French language. However, if you want to reach an English-speaking clientele, a unilingual French content will not be of much help and you will hardly reach your objectives. By having a unilingual website in Quebec, you are missing out on a whole range of customers. By simply taking the time to have your site translated into both official languages, you increase your impact and therefore your sales.


What to Include in Your Bilingual Website?


A website is important because it is often the first impression a potential client will have of your company. First of all, the header is very important, it is what the visitor will see before even scrolling down the page. This is where the tagline is usually found and it should be short, inviting and focused on your target audience. This message should let the visitor know quickly what you do, who you are addressing and should invite them to scroll down to learn more. Identifying your audience is equally important whether your site is multilingual or single language. Once you have identified your audience, you can write the content of your site in the primary language of your target audience. Then you can proceed with the translation. For example, if you offer translation services, it is useless to leave "French translation" in the French section.


How to Proceed?


There are different solutions to obtain a multilingual site, it can for example be via a "plug-in" which allows to duplicate the pages in several languages. This translation can also be found directly in the interface of your site, without installing a plug-in. In any case, the revision option is not optional. You will have to test and revise your site. It is important to have the site reviewed by someone who speaks and understands cultural differences. The same language may not be interpreted in the same way everywhere. It is important to ensure cultural compatibility. This is an essential step to ensure that your site is targeting your audience perfectly.


If you are feeling a little lost when it comes to translating your website, don't hesitate to contact professionals who can handle the project in a turnkey manner.

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