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5 Tips to Improve Your SEO and Website Ranking for an International Audience

There are many ways to capture the international market through your website. You can add new content to your site, purchase ads, or use social media to increase your visitors. However, one of the best ways to get more international traffic to your website by adding more languages.

 

For example, if you want to capture the market in Portugal, you should have a Portuguese version of your website. Businesses can hire an SEO agency in Portugal to achieve the best SEO results. However, a small or a new company may not have a budget large enough to hire professionals.

 

Translating a website may seem like a lot of work, but it can be much easier than you think. Moreover, it allows you to use SEO techniques for multiple languages and generate more traffic for your website. We will give you five tips to improve your SEO and website ranking for an international audience.

 

Translate Your URLs

Most people forget to translate the URLs of their website for an international audience. If you have English words like shop or store in your URL, you will have to ensure that they get translated into other languages. If you are using a tool to translate your website, you should have an option to modify the URL to various languages.

 

That way, you will be able to localize your website and attract more traffic. Consider looking at your sitemap to make sure that you translate the URLs for every page.

 

Some website translation tools can build new files automatically for each language that you had. However, it is usually a premium feature. Some tools might also offer a localization feature if you do not want to translate URLs manually.

 

Use hreflang Tags

Hreflang tags are HTML codes that notify the search engines about the presence of foreign versions on your website. It allows search engines like Google to differentiate between the languages of your content. That way, the search engine knows which one to show to the user and not penalize you for duplicate content.

 

For example, if someone in Portugal searches for a term relevant to your webpage, Google will show the site’s Portuguese version. If you want to reach your target audience accurately, make sure that you include the hreflang tags for the region with the language. A Portuguese hreflang tag would make sure that your page is visible to all Portuguese speakers.

 

However, you can use a region tag to ensure that the Portuguese version also appears for users in Brazil. While we are on the subject, bear in mind that there are many variations for countries speaking the same language. For example, Brazilian Portuguese is quite different from the standard version spoken in Portugal.

 

Conduct Local Keyword Research

You may think that you have a foolproof understanding of your target audience’s search habits. However, the keywords you always use may not be effective in international destinations even when translated.

 

Therefore conduct local keyword research to know the exact terms your target audience might be using on Google or other search engines. Interestingly, local keyword research also helps to understand variations in English. For example, if you are selling flip-flops in Australia, you may want to call them thongs or pluggers on your website.

 

Focus Beyond Google

Google is the first name when we think of search engines in America. We even use Google as a verb while referring to searching for something on the Internet. However, you must consider other search engines while expanding in the international market.

 

For example, the leading search engine in Russia is called Yandex, which holds more than 55% of the market. Yandex was more successful in Russia because the search engine has a better understanding of Slavic languages. Also, remember that Google has been blocked in China due to its Internet censorship. Almost 60-70% of Chinese citizens use Baidu to search for something on the Internet.

 

Even though the other search engines may have some similarities to Google, you can expect most of their algorithms to be different. Google has patented most of the algorithm parameters, which means other search engines cannot use them.

 

Also, indexing might be slower for other search engines, so it may take longer for you to notice the benefits of your SEO efforts. Some search engines like Baidu prioritize paid links over organic results, while others like Yandex still use meta keywords.

 

Utilize Localized Link Building

Just like localized keyword research, local link building is also essential to build website authority. Therefore, use local links from your industry to increase the chances of your brand appearing in local searches.

 

For example, if you’re opening a hotel in Portugal, you would want links from local travel platforms to appear on your website. You can also seek out local journalistic opportunities to present your expertise in the industry. You can use guest posts from local influencers and other social channels to build connections with the local market.

 

Your website’s potential to attract the target audience increases with the addition of languages on your website. However, translating your webpages is just one part of that.

 

You have to make sure that you take additional steps to optimize your SEO so that your website can rank higher on local search engines. We hope that these tips come in handy when you try to capture an international market through your website.

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