Develop your audience beyond borders.?
This makes international SEO strategies increasingly important when targeting an international audience.
Search engines try to provide more personalized search results based on your location. This has impacted Internet marketing strategies for industries such as travel and hotels in particular, which seek to target global and domestic audiences. Here are seven valuable tips for overcoming international SEO challenges.
International domain strategy
There are several ways to set up an international and multilingual site structure. The question is whether to opt for local top-level domains such as mondomaine.fr, subdirectories such as mondomaine.com/fr or subdomains such as en.mondomaine.com.
In general, a local top-level domain (TLD) is the best place to start because it contains the most geographic information for the search engine. For example, Expedia.ca ranks higher for “travel” in Google.ca than Expedia.com, although Expedia.com has more indexed pages and more backlinks than the .ca site, which shows that a local domain name has more weight. This helpful video by Matt Cutts, who leads the search quality and spam team at Google, explains the best strategy for multiple top-level domains to maximize visibility in multiple countries.
However, there may be technical constraints, company policy, or even local business owners that prevent the adoption of this approach. Additionally, certain regulations may apply to the purchase of an international domain name. In Germany, for example, you are required to have an office in the host country and in Australia you must have an Australian Business Name (ABN).
For countries where Google dominates the search market, Google’s geotargeting tools help geotarget less favorable options such as subdirectories and subdomains.
Besides the domain extension, search engines also consider the location of your server’s IP address to determine the geographical relevance of your website. You may want to target another country, but your service provider may be based in another region. Using a local server to host your website can increase your chances of getting indexed for that particular region and improve your overall SEO.
International search engines
While Google dominates the market in regions such as Australia, the United Kingdom and the United States, large markets such as China, Russia and South Korea prefer local search engines, which may have different algorithms those of Google: Baidu (China), Yandex (Russia), Naver and Daum (South Korea). For example, Yandex and Baidu favor social media sites because in some countries user-generated sources are more trusted than official sites. It is therefore important to do research on local search engines.
Local Keyword Research
Be sure to do localized keyword research and not just direct translation. There are even discrepancies between countries where English is the national language. A person in Australia may search for a “romantic vacation” while another person in the United States may search for a “romantic vacation.” Using localized keywords that your target market is more likely to use in their web searches will improve your online visibility and international SEO in that local market.
Multilingual copy for SEO
For best results, the text should be written from A to Z in the target language. Translated content may not have the same meaning as content created with local audience in mind: SEO keywords, language and topics that are relevant to the user’s cultural background. There are other factors like prepositions, accent marks, and different symbols that you need to consider when people search.
Creation of local links
Build relationships with local sites relevant to your product and/or service. Start blogging on relevant local sites, join local networking sites, and submit your website to local directories to reach your audience. You want to establish a presence overseas and if your site has inbound links from relevant, quality local sites, local search engines can give your site a higher ranking.
This is an important consideration when it comes to international SEO. Understanding your regional target market will help you focus your SEO activities and create rich, targeted landing pages for those regions. For example, when summer is in Australia, it is winter in Europe. Holidays may also fall on different dates. It is important to research significant holidays and cultural events for the area.
Code international de SEO
When pages with the same or similar content are served in multiple places, it is essential to ensure that the markup and link coding is correct, the most common being hreflang. This smart tag helps search engines ensure users land on the correct localized page based on their location or search term.
International SEO is becoming increasingly important, with a comScore study showing that less than 30% of internet users read websites in English. International SEO can have its pitfalls, but by researching the local markets you’re targeting and developing a detailed localization strategy, you should be able to increase your website’s visibility and rankings on local search engines.