WordPress site owners change their website’s time zone, appearance, functionality, and language when deciding their niche, but the Admin section sometimes needs separate settings. After all, you may remember that a multisite network can publish content in different languages. Additionally, authors may prefer to see the WordPress Admin dashboard in their language despite the front-end being in a particular one. Don’t forget the situations with hiring designers, SEO experts, and freelancers to work temporarily in some capacity. They may be unaccustomed to working with the primary site language. It’s illogical to tweak the language settings for other users, let alone on the front-end. Thus, here’s how to change the WordPress Admin language.
Clarification. By changing your site language (WordPress Admin dashboard → General → Site Language → Select one from the drop-down list) you can configure both front-end and back-end language. Our guide focuses on users who want to pick a language for the dashboard independently of the front-end one.
1. Change language in the WordPress Admin via profile settings
Before WordPress 4.7 was released, WordPress users relied on the WPML plugin, a renowned option for multilingual websites, from personal blogs to corporate pages. While you can still use it, especially the premium version that translates content on the front and back end, you don’t have to. Since WordPress 4.7, the CMS (Content Management System) has the option inbuilt. As the primary administrator (or any user with sufficient permission), you merely have to:
- Access the WordPress Admin section.
- In the left sidebar, click on Users.
- Go to Your Profile.
- If you have the necessary permissions, you will see an option titled Language below “Toolbar”. Select a different language from the drop-down menu.
- Click on Save Changes at the bottom, and the WordPress admin language will become the chosen one, independent of registered users or the front end.
Note. If the option is missing, the administrator configured “English (United States)” as the default and only language for both the front and back end. Ask them to input additional options or do so as the head admin. Head admins can also go to Users → All Users, select the user in question, and try to set the language in their stead.
2. Using a WordPress plugin to set the Admin section language
We mentioned WPML above, and if you have it installed, the option is identical to the one above. Furthermore, you can make it so that WPML can detect the language and switch to it dynamically. That is useful when you need to switch from, say, English LTR (left-to-right) to Arabic RTL (right-to-left) and don’t want to go back and forth and apply settings. To do so:
- Head to Users.
- Open Your Profile again.
- Find an option titled Editing language, and put a checkmark in front of Set admin language as editing language.
Otherwise, you must install a WordPress plugin suitable for the purpose. Though we have no preference or affiliations, Simple Admin Language Change by Karolína Vyskočilová does this perfectly while remaining lightweight. After installing the plugin, you will see a language option in the upper right corner of the WordPress admin bar, next to “Howdy, <user’s name>”. You can pick a different language from the drop-down menu whenever the Admin bar is visible.