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January 31, 2024

WPML Export and Import sets language information and connects translations after you import multilingual content using your preferred plugin. Initially, all imported content goes into the site’s default language. You can prevent this mixed language content from showing, even temporarily, on the site’s front-end.

WordPress import plugins and tools don’t recognize language-specific content or maintain connections between translations on a new site. Because of this, after importing multilingual content, everything will appear in the site’s default language. 

Until you run WPML Export and Import to assign the correct language information and link translations, your site will display mixed languages on both the backend and front-end. 

To prevent this, you can control the visibility of your newly imported content. Your approach will depend on the import plugin or tool you use:

Case 1: Using a Fully Supported Export/Import Plugin

WPML Export and Import fully supports several popular import tools and plugins:

Using an export and import plugin that WPML fully supports allows it temporary control over your content’s publishing status:

  • If you set content to Publish upon import, WPML Export and Import temporarily switches it to Draft status. This happens in the background during the initial import process. Once you run WPML Export and Import to apply language settings and translation links correctly, it automatically publishes the content, respecting your original settings.
  • If you import content in Draft, it remains in this status, even after WPML Export and Import does its part. It’s up to you to change the status to Publish whenever you’re ready.

Case 2: Using an Unsupported Export/Import Plugin

If you’re using an export/import plugin that isn’t listed above, it means your tool isn’t yet fully supported by WPML Export and Import. In this case, you need to manage the publishing status of your imported content by yourself.

Most import plugins for WordPress allow you to set the publishing status of content during the import process. This enables you to control whether the imported content is immediately published, saved as a draft, or set as private.

To ensure that your content remains hidden from your site’s visitors until WPML Export and Import updates the languages and translations, you should import content in Draft status. 

Once you run WPML Export and Import, it will update all the language information and keep it in Draft status. After you confirm that your content displays under the correct language and links to translations, you can manually change the status to Publish.