If you want to sell your product or service overseas, you need your website to be readily available and adjusted for that audience.
International SEO is the process of optimising your website, so search engines understand what country and language you are targeting. It also enables you to provide the best user experience for your new customers.
If you have noticed a gap in the market and want to get ahead of the curve, international SEO will enable you to do so.
The first question is whether there is actually a market for your product or service in the country you intend to target.
Once you have established the market, consider what sets your business apart. Why is your product better? What will make the customers turn to you over the offering already available?
Your company should reap the rewards of moving international relatively quickly. However, going global requires a great deal of output. From infrastructure, to finding new partners, to instructing lawyers, the expenses can quickly mount.
The best way for your company to meet new audiences is with an optimised website. Optimising for other countries is not as straightforward as merely copying the content into other languages. It requires a thorough international SEO strategy.
Research and Audit
As with any SEO implementation, it is vital that you first inspect your website’s current situation.
Using tools such as Google Analytics, you will be able to see which other countries and languages are already attracted to your website. From here, you will be able to evaluate the conversion rates achieved by these markets.
If you are already receiving a high volume of views from a particular country, you should initially focus on this and implement a strategy to maximise this potential. This will not come at the sacrifice of other countries, but it is a great place to start.
ClickSlice are a well respected and leading international SEO agency and begin every client’s journey by thoroughly researching and auditing the current situation.
Language or Country?
Most of the world does not speak English.
So, how do you make sure foreign users see the correct content in the correct language?
If you are selling a product, which differs depending on where the buyer is currently living, then a country approach to international SEO is likely to be your best option.
However, if you are selling a service or product, which is the same no matter who or where it is purchased, then a language approach will probably be the best fit.
International SEO is nuanced, and depending on your company’s specific needs, different SEO approaches can often be blended.
If you advertise your products and services in Spain, you need your website content to be written in fluent Spanish, error-free.
Although Google translate is perfectly fine for ordering a drink whilst on holiday, it should not be relied on for translating whole pages and websites. You need to invest in a human translator who is native to that language.
There are many intricacies involved with translation, and when you have idioms thrown into the mix, attempting to use software just will not cut it.
You should pay particular attention to the way dates and numbers are structured on your pages. Working with a native speaker will ensure the web page reads perfectly, giving an authentic look to your users and helping to build trust.
For E-commerce sites, you will also need to ensure that prices are converted into the national currency.
Take Canada, for example. Some Canadians may want to access your website in English, others in French.
In this circumstance, both language and country need to be considered.
Creating a hyphenated subdirectory can help search engines to understand this, enabling users to access your content in the correct language the first time.
In this instance, for your French-speaking, Canadian visitors, your website would look something like www.examplewebsite.com/fr-ca.
Language Targeting instead uses subdirectories.
So, no new domain is required for each chosen country. Instead, your website will look something like www.examplewebsite.com/es.
International SEO which involves language-based targeting, is the logical strategy for those who offer the same service across the globe.
Optimising your content for an international audience inevitably means that you will have the same content in multiple languages associated with your website.
You need to ensure that your users reach the correct page and that search engines do not recognise the translated work as duplicate content.
It is vital that you explicitly tell search engines that your content is translated, intended for a different audience. This can be achieved using hreflang tags and will prevent your content from being recognised as spam.
Working with international SEO consultants can help you implement these technical elements of SEO that many companies struggle with.
As established, there is much more to international SEO than merely translating content.
Your brand will need to carefully consider what is deemed appropriate and engaging in this new region of the world. Reflecting upon the visuals such as images and videos used on your website, considering if they accurately represent this new target market.
Additionally, dedicated keyword research is required for each new space your company intends to dominate.
Many businesses have fallen into the trap of simply translating keywords. This will not succeed. Dedicated research and a strong strategy for both on and off-page SEO are essential to complement your international plan. You will need a robust internal linking system and relevant, authoritative links from well-ranking websites in your niche.
International SEO, similar to the other elements for SEO, is continually changing and evolving.
So, your international strategy will periodically need tweaking. Your plan should reflect the amendments made to search engine algorithms and match the shifting social trends and user demands.
You can measure the success of the SEO strategy with tools such as Google Analytics, which will give you a detailed representation of how your site performs in different areas of the world.
The data that comes from these tools aids you to implement an approach moving forward, helping you visualise what is working and what needs to be improved.
ClickSlice are a London SEO agency who specialise in helping companies to achieve their dreams.
We understand that there is no ‘one size fits all’ approach to international SEO, and there will be many intricacies involved with implementing an effective strategy for your business.
The best way to give your company the exposure it deserves is through organic search engine results, which is why we work tirelessly to achieve this. Using creative SEO, we can ensure that we not only rocket the number of people that you reach but focus on targeting genuine customers that convert into sales.
We have a passion for growing companies and enjoy watching our hard work come to fruition. So, if you are in the process of scaling your company and want to ensure your company reaches whole new audiences overseas, get in touch with ClickSlice today.