SEO - Search Engine Optimization

International SEO: 5 ways to scale performance

Last Updated: May 23, 2017

The digital revolution has truly become a global phenomenon. In the European Union, Internet penetration reaches over 80 percent, with some countries reaching well above 90 percent. In China, there are 731 million internet users, representing only 53 percent of the population —  leaving plenty of room for growth. The Internet offers brands an unprecedented way to reach their customers across borders and regardless of language or cultural barriers. Reaching different populations requires an understanding of what people want in these different countries and then producing content to meet these needs. It’s not a matter of simply translating content into different languages, but of applying basic SEO principles of relevancy and localization on a global scale — while also ensuring technical SEO content is delivered in the correct language to the appropriate population. As you get started with your international SEO strategy, here are five ways you can scale your practices to maximize your potential. Understand demand variations from region to region When completing a global search, you will find that even within Google, content types and SERP layouts will vary from country to country. For example, a particular keyword might trigger a Quick Answer in one country, but in another it will not. In each region, Google models its SERPs based upon local trends and interests to provide an optimal user experience. Not only will content and SERP layouts change, but so will keywords and traffic rates. Keywords cannot directly translate from one language to another — you must take into account cultural interests, population, slang, and local vocabulary. Different regions have different expectations from brands within the same industry in terms of what they want to see before they make a purchase decision. As you develop an international search strategy, you must understand that ranking well for a particular term in one country does not mean ranking well for related terms in another. You must optimize locally and build content and user experience precisely for that local audience. Before taking any steps toward building an international search strategy, you must understand keyword demand and traffic within that country. Build a global framework for your international SEO As you create an international search strategy, you’ll find that incorporating technical aspects of SEO will be necessary. Primarily, you will need to employ hreflang tags. A hreflang tag is a piece of code that helps Google understand the intended language and country for your content. This will ensure your content is displayed in the right region. For example, a Spanish language site written for an audience in Argentina will not provide the optimal user experience for those in Spain because there are differences between the two countries in the vocabulary used, even…

Source: International SEO: 5 ways to scale performance

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Jim Yu

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