Internationalize your extension

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This page describes how to support multiple languages of an extension in the Chrome Web Store.

Unless your extension is strictly local in scope, you should internationalize it, making it easy to adapt to various languages and regions. You can then localize it—translate and otherwise adapt it so that it works well in a particular locale.

The word internationalization is often abbreviated to i18n, referring to the 18 letters between the letters i and n. Localization is sometimes abbreviated to l10n.

Overview

You can follow these steps to internationalize and localize an extension to be published in the Chrome Web Store:

  1. Decide which locales you want to support.
  2. Internationalize and localize the extension's UI using the extension platform i18n support.
  3. Localize your extension's name and description.
  4. Upload your extension using the Chrome Developer Dashboard.
  5. Edit your listing, providing localized versions of the detailed description, a YouTube video URL and screenshots.
  6. Specify which regions you want to support.

You can significantly increase your extension's ranking in the locales that you support by localizing the name, description, and detailed description.

Choose locales to support

You can localize your extension to any of the following locales.

Locale codeLanguage (region)
arArabic
amAmharic
bgBulgarian
bnBengali
caCatalan
csCzech
daDanish
deGerman
elGreek
enEnglish
en_GBEnglish (Great Britain)
en_USEnglish (USA)
esSpanish
es_419Spanish (Latin America and Caribbean)
etEstonian
faPersian
fiFinnish
filFilipino
frFrench
guGujarati
heHebrew
hiHindi
hrCroatian
huHungarian
idIndonesian
itItalian
jaJapanese
knKannada
koKorean
ltLithuanian
lvLatvian
mlMalayalam
mrMarathi
msMalay
nlDutch
noNorwegian
plPolish
pt_BRPortuguese (Brazil)
pt_PTPortuguese (Portugal)
roRomanian
ruRussian
skSlovak
slSlovenian
srSerbian
svSwedish
swSwahili
taTamil
teTelugu
thThai
trTurkish
ukUkrainian
viVietnamese
zh_CNChinese (China)
zh_TWChinese (Taiwan)

Localize your extension listing

To localize your extension's listing, you first localize the name and description. Then, after uploading your localized extension, you can edit your extension's listing to specify localized versions of your extension's detailed description and screenshots.

Name and description

You localize the name and description by modifying manifest.json and providing a _locales directory in your extension's ZIP file. Specifically, you need to:

  • Modify the "name" and "description" manifest fields.
  • Add a "default_locale" field.
  • Provide at least one _locales/LOCALE_CODE/messages.json file. Replace LOCALE_CODE with a supported locale; each messages.json file contains the strings for one locale.

The name should not exceed 45 characters and the description should not exceed 132 characters.

Here's an example of how you might specify the name and description of an internationalized extension that has English as its default language and British English as its secondary language:

//in manifest.json:
"name": "__MSG_appName__",
"description": "__MSG_appDesc__",
"default_locale": "en",

//in _locales/en/messages.json:
{
"appName": {
"message": "My extension",
"description": "The description of the extension, displayed in the web store."
},
"appDesc": {
"message": "This extension does something awesome.",
"description": "The description of the extension, displayed in the web store."
}
}

//in _locales/en_GB/messages.json:
{
"appName": {
"message": "My Application"
},
"appDesc": {
"message": "This application does something brilliant."
}
}

If you add a locale later, you just need to add a _locales/LOCALE_CODE/messages.json file for that new locale in order for the Chrome Web Store to pick up the localized "name" and "description". For example, if you add support for French and Arabic, you'll need to add two files: _locales/fr/messages.json and _locales/ar/messages.json. Each of those files can be a copy of _locales/en_GB/messages.json, but with translated versions of the message values.

For details, see the extension Internationalization documentation:

Once you've completed this step, upload your extension using the Developer Dashboard, as described in Publishing Your extension.

Before publishing your extension, you must remove comments from all JSON files.

Detailed description

You can provide a detailed description for each locale your extension supports.

In the developer dashboard, go to the Store Listing tab of your item. As the following figure shows, if you support multiple locales a pull-down list appears at the top store listing details. Each item in the list corresponds to one of the _locales/LOCALE_CODE directories that you uploaded.

Choose language in store listing

Next, choose the locale that you want to edit. Skip this if your extension supports only one locale.

Now edit the detailed description, providing text for the currently selected locale.

Detailed description of the Store Listing

If you support multiple locales, repeat the previous two steps until you've provided a detailed description for each supported locale.

Screenshots

As the screenshot guidelines say, you should provide screenshots for your extension. You can tailor these screenshots for each locale.

Go to the top of the of the Store Listing tab to choose the locale.

To add a screenshot, drop your screenshots in the Localized screenshots section. If you have a YouTube video in the target language, you can add the URL in the Localized promo video field.

localize screenshots and video

To provide screenshots for another locale, use the pull-down list at the top of the page and select the next language.

Specify where to publish your extension

By default, your extension is listed in all regions that can use the Chrome Web Store. If you don't want your extension to be listed in a particular region, unselect that region from the following list in the Regions section of the Payments and Distribution tab.

  • Australia
  • Austria
  • Belgium
  • Brazil
  • Bulgaria
  • Canada
  • Chile
  • China
  • Colombia
  • Cuba
  • Czechia
  • Denmark
  • Ecuador
  • Egypt
  • Estonia
  • Finland
  • France
  • Germany
  • Greece
  • Hong Kong
  • Hungary
  • India
  • Indonesia
  • Ireland
  • Israel
  • Italy
  • Japan
  • Lithuania
  • Malaysia
  • Mexico
  • Morocco
  • Netherlands
  • New Zealand
  • Norway
  • Panama
  • Peru
  • Philippines
  • Poland
  • Portugal
  • Romania
  • Russia
  • Saudi Arabia
  • Singapore
  • Slovakia
  • South Africa
  • Spain
  • Sweden
  • Switzerland
  • Taiwan
  • Thailand
  • Turkey
  • Ukraine
  • United Arab Emirates
  • United Kingdom
  • United States
  • Venezuela
  • Vietnam

Unselecting a region prevents your extension from being listed in that region.

Switch languages in the Chrome Web Store

To see your store listing in each locale, you can choose the Chrome Web Store language in the Settings icon located at the top right corner of your store listing.

Chrome Web Store language setting

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