Facebook has quietly introduced a new feature that enables visitors to translate posts and comments directly on Facebook Pages. This update couldn’t have come at a better time since a recent Experian study revealed that international users spend more time on Facebook than Americans.
The new feature – powered by Bing Translator – will add a “Translate” button under any public post on a Page. This inline tool will translate posts into the language indicated on the visitor’s profile. Clicking on “Original” will revert the post back to its original language.
Bing Translator supports 37 languages, but Facebook is also letting users submit their own translations. Once a translation has received enough positive votes it will replace the Bing translation.
To use the new Translate feature, Pages admins need to activate the translation service through Settings. You will be able to control how your content is translated – by Bing, the community, or both – or you can disable the feature completely. Additionally you’ll have the option to block spam translations.
It’s reported that the new feature currently supports Korean, Japanese, Russian, Taiwanese, and Chinese. However other users have noticed the ability to translate into Italian, Spanish and French as well.
With many brands establishing international communities this new feature should come in handy. If the number of supported languages continues to increase, Translate might make it unnecessary to have multiple Pages for international reach.
Jennifer Beese: Jennifer Beese has worked as a community manager and social media strategist. When she’s not writing, you can find her studying anatomy and physiology—she literally has a skeleton in her closet—or under the stars with her telescope.