Search Engine Optimization, or SEO, is an essential component in ensuring online success. It’s a way to improve your online presence, drive traffic to your website and convert leads – the goal of every business owner.
In this article, we’re going to cover a few strategies you can begin implementing today that will improve your SEO in international markets.
The Challenge Of International SEO
The foundation of SEO is keywords. A keyword is a word or phrase that search engines like Google view to determine when and where to place your content on a web search.
If you have a healthcare business, you’ll want to use keywords like “Obamacare”, “health insurance”, or “private health insurance”—phrases that people interested in healthcare are most likely to type into a Google search. The more relevant your keywords are to the article and the more often they’re searched for play a big role in Google’s search algorithm and page ranking.
The only issue here is that non-English speakers may not be Googling phrases like “private health insurance”. Instead, they’ll be searching using words from their own native language. In order to ensure your article is trending not only in the US but in other countries, you’ll need to use keywords in their language as well. In addition, these keywords need to be relevant to their culture, customs, norms, expectations, slang, and so on.
International SEO Strategies
In order to help you tackle the challenges of international SEO, here are a few strategies you can easily implement.
1. Trial & Error
The simplest way to quickly improve your international SEO game is through trial and error. Going back to our healthcare business example, say you want to start bringing in traffic to your site from France. Maybe you can just directly translate the words “private health insurance” to French and call it a day, but this actually won’t be very effective. Sometimes there’s other wording used, or the context isn’t quite right.
In order to test if a certain translation is working, all you have to do is Google it. Search the translated versions of your keywords and see how many results you get. Experiment with different words, see what keywords the competition is using, and settle on what seems to be getting the most traffic on Google. Tools such as SpyFu and Moz can be indispensable here.
2. Reliable Translations
Easily the most important part of optimizing content for an international audience is ensuring that your translations are reliable. Anyone who’s used Google Translate for longer than a few minutes has likely noticed that it doesn’t always offer the most dependable translations.
Online translation tools tend to be lacking in areas like slang, context, connotations, regional expressions, and other less concrete linguistic elements. This is where expert translations become incredibly useful. They can ensure that your article reads in a way that is natural in the target language.
Things like syntax, flow, and consistency also require a more trained eye to perfect. If your content is difficult to read due to a poor translation, it will draw fewer clicks and meaningful traffic, and search engines will start bumping down its search priority.
3. Tailoring Content
Another key component to consider in your SEO strategy is that your content must be relevant to the target audience. If it’s not, you can drive users away from your site and see a drop in traffic.
This is why researching your demographic and tailoring your content to the expectations and needs of different regions is important. It doesn’t mean you have to completely rework content for different locations, but it might help to implement simple edits and tweaks to make it more relatable for different cultures.
If you have a business that cares about reaching international audiences, it’s important to start thinking about SEO and how it will be managed in translation to ensure you’re website has optimal reach. Take your website to the next level using translation solutions from Argo Translations.
Nick joined the team in 2017 to spearhead Argo’s expanding marketing initiatives. He graduated from North Central College in Naperville, IL with a BA in political science and a minor in global studies. Previously, he worked as a digital strategist for innovative marketing agencies in Chicago and as a political consultant for domestic and international clients in Washington, DC.