When it comes to international SEO (search engine optimization), your company’s respective international websites should not be ‘copy and paste’ versions of your home country site in different languages, even if this is can be one of the first steps in translation and localization. website content.
You need to optimize sites for local audiences in each country, from news and offers to general user experience. A site with popular and performing content requires additional edits and adjustments, and you need to keep an eye on overall performance while paying close attention to each location.
International SEO is often a crucial way for a business to improve its reach. With brief research online, you can find expert advice, and SEO agencies also specialize in international SEO best practices, providing effective information and support.
In this article, we outline and describe several tips and tricks in more detail to help you take advantage of international SEO.
Tips for international SEO
Below is a series of tips and advice to consider when reviewing the ins and outs of international SEO and expanding the reach of your sites to new markets and countries.
1. Do you need to go global and what exactly is your market like?
If you are unsure of the opportunities in different countries, it is always a good idea to research your site’s market reports, statistics, and data. Here is some information to help you, if you are deciding which countries / markets to focus on:
- Government and trading company websites provide the latest international business and trade news and statistics
- Many companies offer internet related reports and statistics, while there are also many sites with information on specific countries.
- Your analytical data: do you see someone from other countries visiting your site? Is there one country that sends more traffic than others? It is worth paying attention, especially if a number of them are already converting
2. Do you need a site for each country?
If the market is big enough, sure. Not just for SEO reasons, but also to provide a better user experience for local visitors – it’s always best to have a separate website for each target country in this case. However, this might not be a viable option for you, and in some cases you will need a site for every language spoken in a given target country.
3. Which domain do you need: ccTLD or gTLD?
If you had asked this question in 2008, the answer had always been to travel with a ccTLD. The truth is, not everyone has this option, for various reasons. In 2021, this has less impact on your SEO performance than search engines. You also have other options to specifically geolocate sites with Google.
4. What type of accommodation should you get?
The location of a web host was one of a series of essentials when considering international SEO, with reference to geographic targeting. However, that’s not that important anymore, and there are other ways to properly display your site’s target market for regionally managed engines and CDNs.
5. Did you follow the country’s safety regulations?
Each company is required to check, at regular intervals, all electrical appliances and machines, electrical equipment and systems. Occupational and operational safety are two essential principles for preventing accidents, and may be relevant for international SEO, depending on the chosen target country.
For example, if you operate a distribution warehouse abroad in a given country: in the event of an accident, the certified results of these checks are decisive for the costs linked to the insurance. Both the testing of electrical systems and the testing of portable electrical equipment are used for the initial detection and elimination of wear and its consequences.
Even if the tests reveal a small deficiency, the client can potentially receive the corresponding important certificate; employees can carry out repairs directly on site; and so you can take the test. It is obvious that such a requirement leads to monetary losses and downtime of operations, and it is an indicator to have checks carried out by a specialist in a timely manner.
6. Google or not Google?
While Google is by far the most widely used search engine, some countries have local search engines which are much more popular. Be very careful when monitoring these local locations and performing additional optimization work.
7. Plan resources
One of the biggest challenges facing global websites is finding local resources. No one has unlimited resources in each target country, and this will become a bottleneck, especially since SEO is not a one-time project, but requires continuous effort. The key is to plan in advance the division of tasks and responsibilities between headquarters and local offices, including:
- Technical resources: IT and web operations
- Linguistic resources: localization and optimization of content
- Website data analysis: reporting and discovery of SEO opportunities
Before that, however, you may or may not have offices or representatives in other countries, or resources available in local offices. In these cases, you need to think about the need to hire or recruit more staff or external resources.
Your international SEO process should start with an initial research to validate the potential of each international market. This is often a great way to prioritize and set your goals. The first step is to research your current international organic search visibility, traffic, conversions, and conversion rate, by answering the following questions:
- What other countries and languages have already achieved organic search visibility and traffic?
- How big is the volume, trend in organic search visibility, and therefore hits from different countries and languages over time?
- Which keywords and pages generated visibility and search traffic for the identified international markets?
- What are organic search click-through rates and visitor conversion rates from top international markets?
- What sales volumes and what trends are these international markets recording?
Where is the organic search volume for relevant and relatively competitive keywords enough to offset your SEO efforts? Select the countries where this is the case as priorities in your international SEO process.
If you have found that organic search volume is insufficient for a specific country, you can select the language first. However, this is still not optimal, because if you noticed that the traffic is too low and you rate each country individually, each version should be as optimized as possible for the audience. It’s much higher if you target the language.
Once you have decided on the international web targeting that you want, and therefore the type of structure to use, you need to fine-tune it to make sure that it is crawled, indexed, relevant, and provides the targeting signals that you want to avoid. misalignment in Search Results.
Exploration and indexability: Since each of your international sites should be crawlable and indexable, they should be listed with their URLs in the proper web structure and should not use scripts or cookies that do not allow search engines to properly index the content. .
Relevance: It is essential to translate or localize the different elements of the pages of each of your international sites, using the keywords and phrases that you identified during the initial research.