In this post we are going to look at what you need to do with your site when you want it to become visible and rank on Google internationally.
Today we all know the importance of SEO when it comes to achieving an effective digital strategy for our business. The presence and positioning in search engines have been uncovered as one of the essential ingredients for our products and services to reach the right audience.
But like any tool with the potential to grow our business, SEO has angles and nooks and crannies to explore if we want to get the most out of our digital marketing strategy. One of the issues to take into account in this regard is the issue of international SEO.
For this reason, in this article I will explain what SEO refers to abroad and I will talk about a few essential steps to optimize our positioning in search engines when the target audience is not local.
What Is International SEO?
International SEO, or SEO for other countries, is the process of optimizing a website so that search engines identify which countries you want to reach, and which languages are used on your website.
It can be said that international positioning is the geolocation of SEO, where instead of optimizing your website to attract traffic from your area, city or country, you optimize it to get visits from different countries and languages.
What Is International SEO For?
In addition to local SEO and national SEO, the international aspect of optimizing our digital positioning is a facet that we must take into account if we want to attract traffic, not only from our region and our country but from different countries and in different languages.
This is relevant for companies in the process of internationalization since a solid SEO strategy abroad will help give our brand greater visibility, increase our competitiveness, favor interaction and boost sales.
And this is what international SEO is for, not only to indicate your languages and regions to search engines but also to configure your website in such a way that it adequately sends the indications to the engines and manages to reach the countries that you want. propose through the Internet.
Creating an international SEO strategy is key if you are thinking of internationalizing your company.
Benefits Of International Positioning
Apart from the advantages mentioned above, this type of SEO has other benefits such as:
- Helps improve the visibility of your website.
- Increase the volume of visits from other countries.
- High return on investment.
- You will be able to connect with audiences around the world.
- It allows to publicize the international profile of your website.
- Increase the sales of your products or services.
And now that you know what international SEO is and what the advantages of SEO are for other countries, we are going to see some essential steps to work on international positioning.
How To Do SEO For Other Countries (Essential Factors)
There are several questions that you should ask yourself when you are considering the international SEO strategy of your company.
What Target Audience Do You Want To Impact?
The first of them, how could it be otherwise, has to do with the target audience we are addressing.
Since when we seek to project our project internationally it will not always be enough for us to position ourselves well in Google, we will have to take into account the search engines used in each specific country (eg: Baidu, Yandex, Yahoo, Bing, DuckDuckGo, Ask, Dogpile, etc.).
To be able to check how our website works from abroad we can always follow one of the many guides on how to connect from abroad with a VPN, such as NordVPN.
Therefore, you must take into account:
- Which search engines are the most popular in the country of destination.
- To what extent do they have access to the Internet.
- What is the quality of the network connection in those places.
- What kind of devices do they use?
- Or what are the main preferences in terms of content consumption, favorite social networks, etc;
Do You Have Adapted Content And Well-Translated Texts?
Another factor to take into account is the quality of the content, that it is interesting and that it is well translated and adapted.
This is where many companies that want to position their sites in other countries fail since they use automatic translators, which are simpler, but the quality of the texts and content decreases, and that offers a bad user experience.
Hence, the importance of the first step, the study of the target audience, to know:
- How he speaks and the terms he uses.
- What kind of search engines do you use?
- Or if you speak Spanish from Spain or Latin America for example.
And so we can have well-translated texts that impact our audience.
Web Structure: Do I Use A Different Domain, A Subdomain Or A Subdirectory?
We must also take into account our website: its structure, its architecture or the languages in which we offer our content… all of this helps to meet all the requirements to be attractive to the algorithm of the search engine that we point to in the specific destination.
For example, a very important point within the web structure is the domain part. Do you have to create a new website for each country? o Is it a better option to do it on a subdomain or subdirectory?
I’ll explain the differences briefly:
- If it is with a different domain: the website will start with 0 authority in a new country, since the link juice and the authority of the main domain will not be shared. Which implies more work and effort to position this new project.
- If it is a subdomain: there would be a main domain and a subdomain for each country (example: es.stealthseosolutions.com, pt. stealthseosolutions, br. stealthseosolutions.com), in this case at the SEO level it also means multiplying efforts for each subdomain.
- If you use a subdirectory: in this case, the link juice and the authority of the main domain is distributed, so when entering a new country, we would not start from 0 and we would not have so much effort and difficulty at the SEO level.
For example, this is the option that I have chosen to work on the international SEO of my site.
What Type Of Content Do You Have To Create? What Keywords Should You Position?
In this step, the most important thing is to make a selection of the content that you are going to use through a search for keywords or keywords.
And for this it is essential to carry out an in-depth analysis of the interests and concerns of the target audience to understand what they are looking for and how they are looking for it. Since it can differ a lot from what we find in our country of origin, but it will be key to creating a successful strategy.
Keep in mind that a highly searched keyword in Spain for example is not necessarily highly searched for in Mexico, or perhaps it will be, but translated differently.
Therefore, my advice is that to determine what content you are going to create and which keywords to rank for, you should do a keyword search in the countries you want to rank for.
You can use tools like Semrush, Ahrefs or Google Keyword Planner.
Don’t Forget The Hreflang Tag
This tag is important to indicate to Google that we have different URLs with the same content but translated or segmented for users from different countries.
For example, you should use it if: your content is fully translated and there are different versions of each page: in Spanish, Portuguese, English, etc.
I recommend that you find out how to implement this attribute or Hreflang tag so that you have no doubts about how and when to use it.
Other factors that you should also take into account in an international SEO strategy are:
- Study of the competition of the country to impact to know what content works and how they do it, will give us many ideas of content to create.
- The geolocation of the contents.
- International link building.
- The social networks that are used in the country to impact.
- A hosting with servers located in the different countries to which you go so that the content loads quickly.
In short, working on international SEO is about preparing the ship WELL before venturing towards new horizons.
I hope that this guide will help you better understand this international marketing strategy and learn about the steps you must follow to have an optimized website applying SEO for other countries.