Duncan Morris - International SEO

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International SEO By Duncan Morris

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Duncan Morris his presentation on International SEO at SMX London 2008.

Transcript of Duncan Morris - International SEO

Page 1: Duncan Morris - International SEO

International SEOBy Duncan Morris

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International SEO

• When should you worry about Internationalisation

• The factors used by the search engines

• Pros and Cons of various site architectures for geo-location

• The answer

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Why should you care

• Increase in traffic

• Target new markets

• Decrease in bounce rate

• Improved conversion rate

• More business

• More money

• Need I go on?

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Why should you care – Not ranking

• Generic tlds (.com, .org, .net etc) can cause issue for local search engines.

oOften seen as ranking well in the US but not in your local index.

• If you only rank in your local index but want listing everywhere (informational product)

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Geo-location

• Redirecting users based on their IP address can be a good idea.

• Search engines tend to browse with an American IP address

• Information architecture is king.

oYou must have a way for the search engines to browse to every page, in every language.

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Why should you care - Language

“To reach 90% of the world’s 1.2 billion Internet users, companies must support 20 or more languages” Quova via blogstorm.co.uk

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Separate Languages

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Factors to “flick the switch”

• ccTLD (.co.uk)

• Hosting Location

• Google Local

• Physical address on page

• Inbound link profile

• Webmaster Central

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A Quick note about Webmaster Central

• For some reason I’ve yet to fully understand, Yahoo! and MSN don’t listen to the Google Webmaster central setting.

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Country != Language

• If you want to reach French speakers don’t forget the Canadians.

• If you geo-target your site to be French you will most likely miss out on French Canadian traffic.

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Information Architecture is King

Beckitten - http://www.flickr.com/photos/suteki/462066881/

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One Powerful domain• www.ikea.com

owww.ikea.com/en owww.ikea.com/fr

• A better solution (?)

owww.ikea.com/us/enowww.ikea.com/uk/enowww.ikea.com/ca/enowww.ikea.com/ca/fr

• This would allow you (force you) to write content targeting the relevant country, not just the relevant language

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Pros and Cons of One powerful domain

All your links go to one domain

• Lower CTR / conversion rate vs ccTLD

• What should you put on the homepage?

• American pages often outrank British pages

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Sub-domains

• Wikipedia.com (who only care about targeting languages)

oen.wikipedia.comofr.wikipedia.comode.wikipedia.co

• If you care about targeting individual countries, the following is better.

ouk.example.com/enous.example.com/enoca.example.com/enoca.example.com/fr

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Sub-domains – The worst of both worlds?

All links to one domain

Could host subdomains in their local country

Links are dampened across subdomains

What do you put on the homepage / www

Lower CTR / conversion rate

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Local ccTLD’s

• amazon.com / amazon.co.uk / amazon.fr

oIn this setup you still have to think about language. There are Canadians who want a website to be in French.

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Pros and Cons of ccTLD’s

Geo-targeting is *much* easier

Improved CTR / conversion rate (especially where the tld indicates the language)

Link building is *much* harder

Can lead to duplicate content issues

.com often still outranks other English TLD’s

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What’s the answer?

• Well... It depends!

• Make sure you own all the relevant domains, and either use them or 301 them to the relevant place.

• Local business units ?

oUse the ccTLD’s and treat as separate websites• Business managed centrally?

oPut everything on the .com and treat as one website

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If the search engines are listening...

• How about a way of claiming multiple domains

• What about using sitemaps to pass the language / location of a page

• Tell us if you ignore duplicate content if the pages are geo-targeted differently (rumours this is the case)

• Make more use of on page factors within a domain (different addresses on different pages)

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Duncan Morris - Distilledwww.distilled.co.uk

[email protected]

Twitter: duncanmorris