How to optimize the site for the region - Profit Hunter

With support: SEO and startups

Ideally, the company should create separate sites for each country with its own domain. When you do this, it will not be difficult for search engines to determine which particular page to show to users in different countries.

What should I do with duplicated text?

Even if the content is repeated on every site, do not worry. Remember that search engines, in most cases, are not punished for this, they simply filter, and this is exactly what you need. You want the search engine to give the English page to the British, and the American page to the Americans. This is exactly what the search engines will do.

If your goal is a particular country, but you have a domain instead. com, make sure that your site is registered in this country (check your server address again).

It sounds pretty simple, but problems can arise here. You may not be able to get a domain for each of the countries in which you work, or for some other reason you will need to place all the information under one domain. In this case, Vanessa advises:
to place the content for each of the countries on a subdomain or in subfolders. (Both options are good, but if you are just starting out and you have a choice, you'd better stop at the first option).
Make sure all content (including title tags and meta description) is localized.
Concentrate your attention on link building within the region. For example, make sure that your PR team is storming the local media, and not just nearby areas.
Include local terms and names in international anchors. For example, you can create an HTML sitemap that will be connected to each "home page" on your domain.

Which is stronger - one common domain or several?

At SMX London, there was an active discussion about whether you need to enter one common domain for all countries in order to create one common PageRank, and whether individual domains for each of the countries weaken the total potential. You remember that relevance is a decisive factor for issuing, while PageRank in its pure form is not equivalent to relevance. A highly relevant page with a low PageRank will take a higher position in the issue than a low relevant page with a high PageRank.

Given this point, we can say that the top-level domain is a highly relevant factor when issuing in one country or another. As for the argument that for one site it is easier to gain a reference mass than for several, Vanessa is convinced that he is baseless. If your information is placed on subdomains or in subfolders by country, you still have to type in the reference weight for each of them. Therefore, Vanessa recommends that you use different domains, if you can, of course, get them.

However, if you already have, for example, a site with a domain. com, with individual subdomains that you constantly follow, of course, it’s best to leave everything as it is and think about other important factors (regional links, language, etc.). If you radically change the structure of your site (for example, from subdomains to individual domains), you will need to redo everything, re-index, work on issuing, and you may also need to change the user's perception, branding, redirect pages, etc. it will take a lot of time. Therefore, in this situation, it is better to change the number of domains only if you have problems with issuing for the country you need.

And what if you make several countries your goal?

Do you want your website to be high in terms of issue in all countries you need? Do you want the same site in German to be equally perceived in Germany, in Switzerland, and in Austria? Unfortunately, there is no perfect solution. In some cases, you will have to trust search engines. But keep in mind that very often they will prefer sites with more specific characteristics.

For example, if you have an American website in English whose target audience is tourists all over the world, those who choose "only French pages" will not see your website. And even if the user does not install this option, the site, the contents of which are presented in French and whose target audience are French, who want to fly to the USA, is considered much more relevant than the site, which aims to be tourists all over the world.

What is the role of IP addresses here?

Some sites locate the user by their IP address and send him the appropriate pages. It seems to be a very profitable option for the user, however, and there are problems here:

  • The location may not be determined correctly. For example, many AOL users have been identified as from Virginia.
  • The user may want another place. For example, a traveler from the USA in Zurich wants to go to the American site Hertz, but Hertz automatically persistently sends it to the Swiss site and does not provide any means for navigation.
  • Search engines need unique URLs in order to index content separately.
  • Search engines crawl around your site from a certain point, and we would like all sites to be indexed.

If you have programmed your site to locate a user and provide him with relevant information, you can advise you:

  • Provide a unique URL for content from each country. For example, do not show the English text to the Americans on mysite. com and content in French to French on mysite. com. Instead, redirect Americans to mysite. com / en and french on mysite. com / fr. T-shaped search engine indexes French site content using mysite. com / fr URL and english site content using mysite. com / en URL.
  • Give links to access versions of a site in another language or for another country. For example, if you are in Zurich, you may be redirected to a Swiss page, but be sure to provide a link to the American version of the page. Or just give a footnote to the home page that will allow them to choose a country. You can also put the option to select a country in the default menu, and then, once selected, users will always open the same version of the site.

Google is not the only search engine

Of course, Google, Yahoo and Live are not the only search engines. If you are targeting other countries, then find out which system is dominant there and how best to optimize for it. Mona Eseleli recently wrote an article for Search Engine Land on international search markets, and, despite the fact that she paid attention to paid search, the same indicators are observed in organic search.

An international strategy is more than just geo-targeting

Of course, much more is needed to create localized content. You need to localize the content, not just translate it. User behavior and requests vary by country. Even the elementary phrases entered into the search string may differ slightly. Careful PR work is needed to create links and to increase the level of competence. It is necessary to consider transient factors. At the conference, some participants indicated that users prefer sites with their local domain. This gives them confidence that the search result in this case will be more localized.

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