Create Multi-Language Links Between Hubs, Streams, and Items

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Do you translate and localize your content for different languages and regions? Learn how to improve your international SEO and visitor experience by linking your language-specific Hubs, Streams, and Items.


 

Before You Begin

  • To use the Multi-Language Links feature, your Uberflip account must contain multiple Hubs. Each Hub must have a Hub Locale set.
  • Access to this feature is controlled by the Update Language Links and List and Export Language Links permissions. These permissions are found under the following parent permissions:
    • Hub > Language Links: Controls Hub-level links
    • Streams > Native Streams: Controls Stream-level links for Source Streams
    • Streams > Marketing Streams: Controls Stream-level links for Marketing Streams
    • Streams > Sales Streams: Controls Stream-level links for Sales Streams
    • Items: Controls Item-level links
  • By default, the permissions necessary to use this feature are granted to all users in the Account Administrators and Content Managers user groups.

 

About Multi-Language Links

Hreflang Tags

Whenever you create content that is localized for particular languages and regions, it's important to set hreflang tags on those pages. An hreflang tag is an HTML attribute that tells search engines what language a page is in, and which other languages that same page is also available in (and where to find them). Hreflang tags are crucial for SEO: they help to surface your content for people searching in particular languages, and they prevent duplicate content issues.

Info

If you'd like to learn more about hreflang tags and how they impact your SEO, check out this helpful article from Moz.

In Uberflip, you set hreflang tags by creating Multi-Language Links. Multi-Language Links allow you to link pages across your Hubs into groups, with each group representing all the localized variations of a given page. For example, if you had Hubs in English, French, and Spanish, you could link their individual Hub home pages into a group to signify that they are all translated versions of the same Hub home page.

Whenever you link a group of pages with Multi-Language Links, Uberflip automatically sets the appropriate hreflang tags on all pages in the group. In that example above, the relevant hreflang tags would look like this:

<link rel="alternate" href="https://french.example.com/" hreflang="fr-ca" />
<link rel="alternate" href="https://spanish.example.com/" hreflang="es-es" />
<link rel="alternate" href="https://english.example.com/" hreflang="en-us" />

These tags tell search engines that these three pages are alternate versions of one another, which language each alternate version is in, and where to find each one.

Locale Selector

In addition to setting hreflang tags, creating Multi-Language Links also gives you the option of displaying the Locale Selector on your Hubs. This is a language selection menu that allows visitors to switch between linked translations of a page:

Fullscreen_2019-10-28__4_40_PM.png

The language menu is dynamic, so it appears only on pages with linked translations, and automatically adjusts the options that are shown based on their availability for the current page.

Contextual Linking

If a visitor switches languages, Multi-Language Links can also preserve the Stream context of Items. For example, say a visitor enters an English-language Marketing Stream and views an Item, then switches their language to Spanish. In this case, you would want to send them to the Spanish-language version of the Item, ideally in the context of that same Marketing Stream. We call this contextual linking, and as long as you have linked the two Marketing Streams in addition to the Items, Multi-Language Links is smart enough to do this automatically.

Here's how contextual linking works:

If you only link the Items, but not the Marketing Streams, the visitor would be taken to the Spanish-language version of the Item in its Source Stream:

Multi_Lang_Contextual_Linking_-_draw_io.png

But if you also link the corresponding Marketing Streams, Multi-Language links knows that the linked Items appear in both Streams, and will automatically take the visitor to the Item in the Spanish-language version of the linked Marketing Stream:

Multi_Lang_Contextual_Linking_-_draw_io.png

 

In other words, Multi-Language Links' contextual linking feature makes it easy to ensure that visitors can consume your content in the context you intended — even if they land on the "wrong" language and need to switch.

 

Create Multi-Language Links

Here are some basic guidelines to keep in mind when you create Multi-Language Links:

  • You can create Multi-Language Links at all levels (Hub, Stream, and Item). Because links are intended to indicate that the linked pages are alternate versions of one another, links must be between pages at the same level as one another, i.e. Hub-to-Hub, Stream-to-Stream, or Item-to-Item.
  • In Uberflip, the Hub Locale is used as the basis of localization: a Hub's Locale specifies the language of that Hub, and all the Streams and Items within it. As a result, links between Streams and between Items are always across Hubs — it's not possible to link Streams or Items within the same Hub.
  • For the same reason, you can only link Hubs, Streams, or Items that have different Hub Locales. Each page in a group of linked pages represents a single localized version, so no two can be set to the same Hub Locale. Note that this applies to Hub Locales, not languages: regional variations of the same language that have their own Hub Locale setting (e.g. English (United States) and English (United Kingdom)) can have Hub/Stream/Item links between them.
  • Links created at any level exist independently of links at all other levels. This means that you can create links between Items without needing to link the Streams they belong to, or the Hubs that they are in. Likewise, you can link Streams even if no link exists between their Hubs. In addition, removing a link at a higher level does not affect any of the links below it.

To learn how to create links at each level, click on the tabs below:

Link Hubs Link Streams Link Items

Multi-Language Links between Hubs link their individual Hub home pages. When you link Hubs, this will:

  • Create hreflang tags on all of the linked Hub home pages (pointing to one another as alternates)
  • Display the Locale Selector on the linked Hub home pages (only on Hubs where the feature is enabled).

Tip

You can also create distinct groups of linked Hubs, which can be useful if you have multiple "types" of Hubs with different audiences and purposes.

For example, say you have an "Education" Hub type and a "Resources" Hub type, and each type has localized versions in several languages: in this case, you could link all of the Education Hubs together in one group, and all of the Resources Hubs together in a separate group.

When creating groups in this way, keep in mind that they must be completely distinct — no Hub can be in more than one group.

To create Multi-Language Links between Hubs:

  1. Log in to your Uberflip account.
  2. Using the Hubs menu at the top, navigate to one of the Hubs that you want to link.
    • When creating a new group of linked Hubs, you can go to any of the Hubs that you plan to link together — you do not have to start with any specific Hub.
    • If you want to link a new Hub to an already existing group of linked Hubs, you can't do this from within the Hub to be added: you must go to a Hub that is already part of the group.
    • The Hub you choose (and all Hubs it will be linked with) must have a Hub Locale set.
  3. In the sidebar menu on the left, click on Hub Options > Multi-Language.
  4. The Hub Links for [Hub Name] menu will appear on the right. By default, no links should be shown here yet.
  5. Click on the Add Hub Link button near the top left:
    Hubs___Options_-_Multi_Language_-_Uberflip.png
  6. The Link This Hub to Other Hubs window will open as an overlay. Here, you will see a list of other Hubs that can be linked. Hubs with the same Hub Locale as the Hub you are in (or with no Hub Locale set) can't be linked, so they will not be shown.
    Hubs___Options_-_Multi_Language_-_Uberflip.png
  7. Select the Hubs that are localized variations of the Hub you are in. To add a Hub to your selection, click on its tile.
    • A checkmark will be displayed on the tiles of selected Hubs, and any Hubs with the same Hub Locale as an already selected Hub will become unselectable (greyed out).
    • If needed, you can also use the dropdown menu in the top left to filter the list of Hubs to a specific Hub Locale:
      Hubs___Options_-_Multi_Language_-_Uberflip.png
  8. As you select Hubs, the counter at the bottom of the window will increase to show how many Hubs you have selected. To save your selection and link the selected Hubs, click on the Add button in the lower right.
    Hubs___Options_-_Multi_Language_-_Uberflip.png
  9. You'll be returned to the Hub Links for [Hub Name] menu, where the links you created will now be shown:
    Hubs___Options_-_Multi_Language_-_Uberflip.png
  10. Once created, the links will take effect immediately. The same links will also be shown on the Hub Options > Multi-Language menu when you are in any of the other linked Hubs:
    Hubs___Options_-_Multi_Language_-_Uberflip.png

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Remove Multi-Language Links

You can remove Multi-Language Links between Hubs, Streams, and Items at any time.

  • Because links at any level are independent from links at other levels, removing a link does not have any cascading effects on links at lower levels. For example, removing a link between two Hubs will not affect links between Streams or Items within those Hubs.
  • Links must be removed one at a time, e.g. you can unlink one Hub from a group of linked Hubs, but you cannot break the links between all Hubs at once (the same also applies to Streams and Items).

When you unlink a page at any level, this will:

  • Remove hreflang tags from the unlinked page, and remove references to the unlinked page from the hreflang tags on other pages it was previously linked to.
  • Remove the Locale Selector from the unlinked page (only within Hubs where the feature is enabled).
  • Disable Contextual Linking for Items in the Stream if the unlinked page is a Stream page.

To learn how to remove links at each level, click on the tabs below:

Unlink Hubs Unlink Streams Unlink Items

You can unlink any Hub from a group of linked Hubs, including the Hub you are currently in.

To remove Multi-Language Links between Hubs:

  1. Log in to your Uberflip account.
  2. Using the Hubs menu at the top, navigate to the Hub you want to unlink (or any other Hub that it is currently linked with).
  3. In the sidebar menu on the left, click on Hub Options > Multi-Language. The Hub Links for [Hub Name] menu will appear on the right.
  4. You will see a list of Hubs that are linked with the Hub you are in:
    • To unlink the Hub you are in from this group: click on the three-dot ("meatball") menu button near the top right, then click on Remove this Hub from the Group.
      Hubs___Options_-_Multi_Language_-_Uberflip.png
    • To unlink another Hub from this group: click on the delete (trash) button to the right of the Hub you want to unlink.
      Hubs___Options_-_Multi_Language_-_Uberflip.png
  5. You will see a confirmation message asking whether you want to unlink the Hub. Click on Confirm to remove the link.

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Set a Default Language Hub (Optional)

If you have created Multi-Language Links between Hubs, you can also optionally designate one of the Hubs as the default language. This will set it's hreflang tag to the value x-default, rather than its own language/region code (e.g. en-us), like this:

<link rel="alternate" href="https://french.example.com/" hreflang="fr-ca" />
<link rel="alternate" href="https://spanish.example.com/" hreflang="es-es" />
<link rel="alternate" href="https://english.example.com/" hreflang="x-default" />

An x-default hreflang tag tells search engines that language-specific versions of a page are available, but to prefer the designated default version for anyone who does not speak any of those languages. In the example above, for instance, a German speaker or a Mandarin speaker would see the English-language version of the Hub in their search results. If you'd like to learn more about the x-default hreflang tag, see this post from Google.

Note

If you do not explicitly set a default language, none of your Hubs will have the x-default hreflang tag.

To set a Hub as the default language Hub:

  1. After creating Multi-Language Links between Hubs, navigate to any of the linked Hubs.
  2. Click on Hub Options > Multi-Language in the sidebar menu.
  3. While viewing the Hub Links for [Hub Name] menu, click on the three-dot ("meatball") menu button near the top right:
    Hubs___Options_-_Multi_Language_-_Uberflip.png
  4. In the menu options that appear, click on Manage Group Default:
    Hubs___Options_-_Multi_Language_-_Uberflip.png
  5. The Set Default Hub menu will appear, and will list all of the Hubs that are linked to the Hub you are in. Click on the circle next to the Hub that you want to set as the default language:
    Hubs___Options_-_Multi_Language_-_Uberflip.png
  6. To save your selection, click on the Confirm button.
  7. You'll be returned to the Hub Links for [Hub Name] menu, where you will now see Yes under the Is Default column beside the Hub you selected:
    Hubs___Options_-_Multi_Language_-_Uberflip.png
  8. The change will take effect immediately, and this Hub will be assigned the value x-default for its hreflang tag.

If you want to unset or change the default language Hub, repeat the steps above and select None or a different Hub in Step 5.

 

Enable Locale Selector (Optional)

If you want visitors to be able to switch between available linked languages for any given page, you can turn on the Locale Selector. When enabled, this feature will add a language selection menu to any Hub home page, Stream page, or Item page that has Multi-Language Links (it will not appear on pages without Multi-Language Links). The language options displayed by the Locale Selector are  populated dynamically using the the Hub Locales of pages linked to the current page.

Important

The Locale Selector is a Hub-specific setting, so you have to configure it separately for each Hub.

To ensure a consistent visitor experience, we recommend that you use the same setting across all Hubs that are connected with Multi-Language Links at any level. If you use different settings, visitors can find themselves in a situation where they have switched from a Hub with the Locale Selector to one without it, but are not able to switch back again (due to the missing Locale Selector).

To enable the Locale Selector:

  1. Log in to your Uberflip account, and navigate to the Hub where you want to enable the Locale Selector.
  2. In the sidebar menu on the left, click on Hub Options > Advanced.
  3. In the settings menu on the right, scroll down to the Internationalization section.
  4. Check the box next to Enable Locale Selector:
    Hubs___Options_-_Advanced_-_Uberflip.png
  5. The change will saved automatically, and the Locale Selector will immediately begin appearing on all pages that have Multi-Language Links.

If you want to disable the Locale Selector for any Hub, simply uncheck the Enable Locale Selector box.

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