Localization of Sketch and InDesign files

over 2 years ago from , Interactive Designer

Hi everyone,

I will be happy to hear different suggestions how to optimize the whole workflow for the following case:


  • To automate the process of translation of PDF files and a website.


  • We have these:
    • 1st PDF file - 50 pages;
    • 2nd PDF file - 10 pages;
    • 3rd PDF file - 20 pages;
    • Website.
  • We have to translate everything on multiple languages (~10);
  • Lots of changes and iterations are being made both on the PDFs and on the website on a weekly basis.


For the website we'll try wit localizejs.com;

Two of the PDFs are generated in InDesign, but lots of the content is created in Sketch and embedded as raster images in the InDesign files.

The third PDF is entirely created in Sketch (20 slides).

Solution (???)

A way to separate the content from the presentation in Sketch and InDesign, probably.

IDML doesn't work well, because it breaks the layout of the InDesign file.

Any ideas how to optimize the process of translation and make it "designer-independent"?


  • , over 2 years ago

    OK, let's give this a try: https://github.com/DWilliames/Google-sheets-content-sync-sketch-plugin

    4 points
  • Iryna Namaka, 12 months ago

    I think "designer-independent" approach won't solve the issue. I am from the Crowdin team and we believe automation is the solution for all teams taking part in localization. When it comes to mockups localization, designers are the first who should be involved and should have the ability to test translated designs before the development starts. It will solve many of the headaches later.

    Crowdin has released a plugin for Sketch so that designers could send texts for translation from Sketch in a click and upload translated content back. You can download this plugin from our GitHub repository or learn more from the blog post. Good luck with your localization projects!

    1 point
  • Gaurav Patel, over 2 years ago

    Not sure if it's applicable to how the content is within the Sketch/PDF files, but what I had to do when we handed large amounts of text was to provide a reference image, labelling each section, eg. Hero Title, Hero Paragraph, Hero CTA, then create spreadsheet with the English master copy. You would specify which languages you wanted translated by titling empty columns which would be filled with the translated copy.

    Then the localisation or whoever/whatever system could usually ingest an .xslx or .csv and spit back a automagically translated sheet back.

    0 points
    • Brian Duchek, over 2 years ago

      Gaurav is right. You get a lot of benefit out of accompanying your English copy source with context guides to help translation workers get the meaning right. Any copy that uses proprietary or industry slang needs lots of help. Consider writing a glossary of terms. Also, get familiar with extended character sets available in your fonts, and how much copy will grow (or shrink) based on language conventions.

      0 points
  • Yasen DimovYasen Dimov, over 2 years ago

    This is another one: https://github.com/contentsync/SketchContentSync

    0 points