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Localize Intercom to work with multiple languages
Localize Intercom to work with multiple languages

How to localize the Intercom Messenger for your product, website and/or mobile app and communicate with customers in their language.

Beth-Ann Sher avatar
Written by Beth-Ann Sher
Updated over a week ago

Supported languages

Arabic, Bengali, Bosnian, Brazilian Portuguese, Bulgarian, Catalan, Croatian, Czech, Danish, Dutch, English, Estonian, Finnish, French, German, German (Formal), Greek, Hebrew, Hindi, Hungarian, Indonesian, Italian, Japanese, Korean, Latviski, Lithuanian, Malay, Norwegian, Persian, Polish, Portuguese, Romanian, Russian, Serbian, Simplified Chinese, Slovenian, Spanish, Swahili, Swedish, Thai, Traditional Chinese, Turkish, Ukrainian, Vietnamese, and Англи хэл (Mongolian).

Right-to-left languages are partially supported in our Mobile SDKs. To learn more have a chat with us in the Messenger.

Localize the Messenger

You can localize the Messenger for your product, website and/or mobile app with just a few clicks. 

Then, add a language you want to support.

Now all of the UI language in the Messenger, such as Send us a message and your team intro will be localized in these additional languages to match your customer's device settings.

For example, even if your default language is English, the Messenger can appear in French to your French users, in German to your German users and so on.

If you'd like to set a new default language in your Messenger, click Make default next to a language you've added.

Send outbound messages to users in their language

Intercom auto-detects the language of your users using machine learning ("Detected language"), or from their browser settings ("Browser language"), which then gets stored as a user attribute.

Like any other attribute, you can use this to filter your Contacts according to language and then click New message.

Or, you can create a Proactive Support message and use Audience rules to send to users based on language.

Localize an existing Workflow or Proactive Support message by duplicating it via the More tab on the top right when editing. Then translate the content and change the browser language in the audience rules to reflect the language.


How does localization work with Fin AI Agent?

After you've localized the Messenger for your supported languages, you can enable Multilingual Fin and provide customers with automated answers in multiple languages.

How does localization work with the Article Search card?

If you've localized your Messenger and your Help Center, content shown in the Article Search card will match your user's browser language. If you don't support your user's browser language, the default language of your Help Center will be shown.

How does localization work with Messenger apps?

At the moment, most Messenger apps are only supported in English.

Can I control the language of the in-app Messenger UI?

Yes. You can override this language by sending a user attribute called language_override. To do this you need to change the Javascript code snippet that connects your app with Intercom as shown below:

var intercomSettings = {
app_id: 'bk7tlzy4',
language_override: 'fr' // Replace with preferred language of user

This only applies to languages that you've added in your Intercom app settings.

The value of the language_override will only be used if it conforms to an ISO 639-1 two-letter code such as 'en' for English or 'fr' for French. You’ll need to use a four-letter code for Chinese like 'zh-CN'.

For Norwegian, Intercom uses Norwegian Bokmål so the ISO code you should use for Norwegian is nb, not no

The language_override attribute will also override the language in which Fin AI Agent speaks to the user.

Can I target mobile users by language?

When Intercom is loaded in your mobile app, the user's language is detected based on the language of the OS. The Messenger will load in the user's language if it is supported in your workspace. If your workspace doesn't support their language, the Messenger will load in your workspace's default language

Intercom does not automatically track mobile user's language in an attribute on their profile like we do for web. For user's loaded in the Messenger on the web, Intercom tracks their language in the "Browser language" attribute, which is only applicable to web integrations.

If you want to target outbound content at mobile users based on language, you will need to set up tracking yourself. You can either use the language_override attribute to track mobile user language, or create a custom attribute to track language.

How is language detected in WhatsApp conversations?

When a new contact is created from WhatsApp, their language is determined based on their number prefix. If the language is supported by your workspace, this language will be set as the contact's Messenger and browser locale. Otherwise, your workspace's default language will be used.

Can I localize outside of the Messenger?

Yes, you can also configure your Help Center and Fin AI Agent to support multiple languages.


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