Translating WooCommerce (Localization)

Introduction ↑ Back to Top

WooCommerce comes localization-ready out of the box. All that’s needed is your translation, if the plugin didn’t come bundled with one for your language.

There are several methods to create a translation, most of which are outlined in the WordPress Codex. However, we find the easiest method is to use a plugin called Loco Translate. More advanced users can use PoEdit. Both methods are covered in this doc.

Before you begin ↑ Back to Top

WooCommerce includes a language file (.po or .pot file) which contains all of the English text. You can find this language file inside the plugin folder in woocommerce/i18n/languages/.

Set up WordPress ↑ Back to Top

WordPress needs to be told which language it should run.

  1. Go to: Dashboard > Settings > General and change the Site language.

Once this has been done, the shop displays in your locale if the language file exists. Otherwise, you need to create the language files (process explained below).

WooCommerce 2.2+ Language Packs ↑ Back to Top

From version 2.2, WooCommerce includes a language pack downloader. PO and MO files will no longer be bundled with the plugin – they will be downloadable from your dashboard if you have the WPLANG constant set, or from a GitHub repository if you wish to grab them manually. A notice will be displayed within your administration:

Update WooCommerce 2.2+ Translation Packs

Update WooCommerce 2.2+ Translation Packs

If for some reason the translation packs install fails, you can force the download in WooCommerce > System Status > Tools > Force Translation Upgrade:

Force Translation Upgrade (WooCommerce > System Status > Tools)

Force Translation Upgrade (WooCommerce > System Status > Tools)

PO and MO files are copied in wp-content/languages/woocommerce/

Translating with Loco Translate ↑ Back to Top

Loco Translate is a free plugin that you can download here. You can also add directly from the WordPress administration, in Plugins > Add New.

Once you download and install Loco Translate, a new “Loco Translate” menu item is created with two sub-sections. By default, the “Manage Translations” section will list all your themes and plugins and display all available translations for each:

Loco Translate Listings

Loco Translate Listings

You can easily add new languages to a theme or a plugin using the Add New Language link:

Loco Translate: add new language

Loco Translate: add new language

Then choose the language to add in the list, or enter the language ISO code (ex: fr_FR, en_US etc…), and select the folder to add the translation files to, and hit Start Translating:

Loco Translate: create new language

Loco Translate: Create new language

Start translating, and save when finished:

Loco Translate: Start translating!

Loco Translate: Start translating!

Translating with PoEdit ↑ Back to Top

PoEdit is a more advanced alternative to Loco Translate. Only advanced users or translators wishing to contribute to WooCommerce core should attempt this method.

WooCommerce comes with 2 POT files which can be imported into PoEdit to translate. These files are broken up to make the frontend more efficient.

  • woocommerce.pot – Contains frontend strings
  • woocommerce-admin.pot – Contains admin strings

Each is translated separately. To get started open PoEdit and go to File > New catalog from POT file. Once you have done this, choose either woocommerce.pot or woocommerce-admin.pot and PoEdit will show the catalog properties window:



Enter your name and details, so other translators know who you are, and click ‘OK’. You will be prompted to save your .po file. Name it based on what you are translating to, i.e., a GB translation is saved as woocommerce-en_GB.po or woocommerce-admin-en_GB.po, respectively. Now the strings are listed.

Translate the strings

Translate the strings

After translating strings, you can save. The .mo file will be generated automatically.

Updating your translation

You can update your .po file by opening it and then going to Catalog > Update from POT file. Choose the file and it will be updated accordingly.

Making your Localization upgrade safe ↑ Back to Top

If you’re running WooCommerce < 2.2 and you keep custom translations in woocommerce/i18n/languages, they can be lost when upgrading. To make them upgrade-safe, place them in wp-content/languages/woocommerce/.

If you’re running WooCommerce 2.2+, all translations are automatically added to wp-content/languages/woocommerce/ and upgrade-safe.

Note: Once moved, you cannot edit localizations. You need to move them back to make changes.

Contributing your Localization to Core ↑ Back to Top

We maintain translations at our project on GlotPress. If you want to contribute translated strings to your language or wish to start a new translation, register at and start translating.

Find your locale, and click Contribute Translation.

Find locale

Search for WooCommerce – excelling eCommerce in the Plugins tree, and click Translate Project.

Search WooCommerce on GlotPress

You will see a list of all versions available to translate, both for core and for the Readme file. Click on the name of the sub-project you wish to translate.


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