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How To Rank For Foreign Location And Language Specific Searches

As an SEO agency, GrowTraffic works with many businesses that want to grow their online profile in the local region. In this case, we focus on Local SEO tactics. Many of our clients however have a global spread and so we want to focus this blog specifically on how to rank for foreign location and language specific searches.

When it comes to ranking for foreign location and language specific searches, we equip websites with the tools to rank for a much wider audience. Optimising web pages and boosting search presence for a global audience may seem complex but in actual fact, it isn’t too far away from traditional SEO.

image of world mapWhy Should I Rank for Foreign Location & Language Specific Searches?

There are several reasons why, if your business reaches global audiences, you should tailor your SEO efforts to language specific and foreign locations. 

Particularly for languages outside of English, there is even less competition than usual in niche markets. This means that if your USP is already niche, it will be even more so in foreign speaking countries, so you’re up against less!

Google changes its algorithms dependent on the location of the search. When it comes to foreign languages, it can be very difficult for search engines to pick up identical content from one country to the next.

“Search uses lots, lots of algorithms. Some of them apply to content in all languages, and some of them are specific to individual languages (for example, some languages don’t use spaces to separate words — which would make things kinda hard to search for if Google assumed that all languages were like English).”

This means that our content can rank differently in each foreign location.

How To Rank For Foreign Location And Language Specific Searches

When we say it’s not worlds apart from traditional SEO, we mean it! There isn’t anything specifically that is wildly different to your business’s original efforts, although taking into consideration the foreign locations your content reaches and the languages it will be translated to is essential.

As you would with a ‘normal’ SEO strategy, start by looking at your niche in another country – who are your competitors, what is its search volume etc. Understanding where you currently sit in the foreign market will better equip you for your international SEO strategy.

From this research, you may need to tailor your keywords when it comes to foreign locations. Understanding the language and cultural differences of the new market you aim to rank in is crucial to avoid missing out on foreign traffic. Google Translate is definitely a place to start – if somebody within the business is a native speaker – even better! This again will become clearer during your competitor analysis in the foreign market – what are they ranking for?

You may also need to consider making changes to your domain. Going with an international-friendly URL is key when it comes to the trust signals for your site. The ccTLD is part of the domain which shows users which country your site is registered in. This will help the Search Engines when deciding which country to rank your site. You can also alter your site’s subdirectories and subdomains to consolidate your domain authority in each forming location.

Next, tailor your content! This goes without saying and is not only applicable to international SEO. Tailoring your content to your target audience – wherever they might be retrieving this information or in what language is crucial. I’m sure, if you follow GrowTraffic you have heard us talk about search engines prioritising content and Google’s ‘Helpful Content Update’.

When it comes to content, search engines will rank what they see as relevant and authoritative. Using local language, contact information, appropriate addresses, timezones etc are all ways search engines will deem your content as worthy of the top spot.

This is also the case for external links. Linking to other pieces of content in that language, or from that specific foreign location is a strong signal that your content is in the right place.

How GrowTraffic Can Help

At GrowTraffic, we stay up to date on the latest algorithm updates so that we can provide the best service and education to our clients. Gaining an understanding of how to rank for foreign location and language specific searches is key if you are wanting to reach further afield with your website content.

At GrowTraffic we can enable you to do this! By offering advice, education and guidance, our team are on hand to answer any queries you may have regarding international SEO. Just get in touch!

Call us today on 0161 706 0012

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