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We have a site that is written in English, exclusively for use people in the UK. All the pages are in English although there is one page that has been translated into 20-odd languages (that basically says; This is a site for people in the UK and is therefore in English, but if you speak 'X' language then you can call us and we'll help you out in your native language).

I'm trying to determine the best way to provide a link to this page from the homepage of the site, and in other menus around the place.

Unlike other sites where you can use something like Eng (Change Language) option as this won't work here because the site isn't available in other languages and we don't want to give the impression that the whole site will be translated.

I need a link that'll take people to the page that lists all the 20-odd languages so they can pick the one they want and be presented with the one single solitary page in their language.

Currently we have a link with the text of 'Other Languages' but obviously that won't work for people who can only read Bengali.

There are other questions on this site about how to represent the language toggle (such as this, or this among many others) but I think this is a slightly different situation. We need a text-based (or possibly unicode) link that takes people to the language page, but it has to be presented in a form that is understandable.

We can't use any IP detection or things like that because the site is only available to people in the UK. Plus (as I've said before) we only have an English version of the site so we can't take them to the particular language page as that's not what they've requested by visiting the site, they've arrived at the homepage so would need to see everything that is on offer (even though it is all in English)

What should we go with? Stick with 'Other Languages'? Change it to 'Don't Speak English?' or is there something more suitable we can use?

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1 Answer 1

Having the link localized based on IP is usually an option (not in your case) but there is a better option, using the browser language as the control for the "Other Languages" string.

Most companies I've researched use browser language over IP (recently, Stack Overflow Careers joined this group) including Facebook, LinkedIn, and Twitter. To check, change your browser language settings and go to their .com sites.

Otherwise, the options you linked to (language picker in native language, or flags) are better than English strings like "Other Langauges" or "Don't speak English".

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Hmm, detecting browser language for this purpose is a great idea actually, if it's possible. I wonder how many different languages a browser can be configured for? (Such as Urdu, Cantonese, Somali etc.) Think I've got some investigating to do. –  JonW Jun 3 at 15:58
    
But not flags. (Flag ≠ Language). Especially in this case because it would always be the English / British flag, seeing as it's a British site. –  JonW Jun 3 at 16:02
    
I would consider implementing browser detection but I would depend on it. Most people are unaware that you can change your language settings and they stay on their OS's language, and most retail purchased computers in Britain will have English installed. Unfortunately I can't think of any other solutions that meet your requirements. –  Tim FitzGerald Jun 6 at 1:40

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