New Google Forms now support the language parameter!

For several weeks I have been trying to figure out a solution how to handle language issues with new Google Forms.  In the old version, a URL parameter could be specified (see this page).  However, this didn’t work with the new version of Google Forms.

Until today.  Thanks to a posting on the WordPress Support Forum, I was alerted to the fact that the URL parameter is indeed working again.  This is great news as dealing with odd language issues is one of the more common support requests I receive.

In the new version of Google Forms, simply append ?hl=en (or ?hl=fr for French, etc.) to the end of the URL of the live form.  Wish they would have done this several weeks ago, would have saved me quite a bit of time!

29 thoughts on “New Google Forms now support the language parameter!

  1. And it doesn’t work..

  2. Excellent. My embedded form rendered native field labels in German. Couldn’t figure out why. Adding hl=en did the trick. Many thanks.

  3. To me, this works both in IE and Firefox BUT NOT IN Google Chrome, even when I select “es” (spanish) as my one and only preferred language…I suspect Chrome gives precedence to the operating system language…Has anyone else come across this issue? If so, How did you resolve it?

    • Have you tried logging out of Chrome? Check your Chrome settings to see if you are logged in (if the link doesn’t work type chrome://settings into your address bar).

      • Hi Mike, thanks for the recommendation but I never log into Chrome. I even configured every possible Regional aspect of Windows to Spanish and still cannot see the Form fixed things in that language. I also made sure to test this being logged out of Google and without any cookie or session information active on the browser. If you happen to come across another idea, I’d be more than grateful to test that out. Cheers.

        • I cannot think of anything on the WordPress side that would cause this behavior. Since you only see it in Chrome, it has to be related to Chrome. When I was trying to work out my example form in French Google was being a little too helpful on my language selection. What do you see when you enter this into Chrome’s address bar: chrome://settings/languages/

  4. I’m trying to make one survey (form) into 4 different languages (English, Spanish, Hmong, and Somali). This is so when the people my non-profit serves come to take the survey, they can click on a link that will take them to the language that they speak.

    I have all of the free-type sections translated by people who know the languages, but the built in text, like the “Submit” button, are only in English. I tried the ?hl=XX idea, but it didn’t work in Chrome or Safari.

    Is there a new fix to this?

    • The same solution (?hl=XX) still works. You can see an example of it here where the Google generated button text is in French. If you are using a very old Google Form, you might have to use &hl=XX if the URL has other parameters on it.

  5. While using Google Forms, (my Google is in French) I want to use EZ Query and it does not work (error in the formula). Could it be a language problem and cannot be fixed?

    • I am not familiar with EZ Query, what is it and what does it do?

      • EZ Query let you select columns from one sheet into and paste them into other sheets (Filters are optional). When you modify entries from that initial sheet, it will change the others as well.

        • So is EZ Query a Google Sheets plugin or a WordPress plugin? If it is a Google Sheets plugin then I am not sure what to tell you. When you initially set up a Google Form it allows you to configure where the form responses go. If you modify the results spreadsheet, I am not sure what will happen as I’ve never tried it.

  6. Hi Mike, I am in the process of creating a survey using Google Forms. I am also a Chrome user. I need to publish the survey in Japanese (I will have all text translated to Japanese, but would like the form buttons to be in Japanese as well) and am having a hell of a time. I would be really grateful for some help.

  7. Hi Mike,

    I don’t know why, but on some computers it does work, the added link “?hl=en”, but on some computers it doesn’t work. Do you have some other tips & tricks for this?

    Many thanks,
    Elise Cramer

    • I have not seen that behavior – the language parameter is supposed to override any geo-location detection Google does when serving up HTML. Are only users from certain countries affected or is it random?

      • Hi Mike, thank you for your reply. It seems random. But I will leave it for now. It is hard to control where the language parameter overrides and where it doesn’t.

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