Brits Abroad – International SEO Cheat Sheet: Avoid The Pitfalls With These 7 Great Tips

16th September, 2014 - 5 minutes read

So you have done your research in Google Analytics and you can see that customers are already visiting from other countries. You’ve checked with your team and you know you have the capacity and resource to sell abroad. Now how can you boost your international traffic? Check out these simple tips to get the most from your international SEO.

There are series of requirements that you will have to undertake to effectively achieve country specific SEO targeting for your website. Whilst the process itself isn’t a simple one, the model for achieving sales in other regions is essentially the same for anywhere in the World. This presents the potential for scope as your brand grows globally.

Specific Landing Pages Step 1 is the creation of specific landing pages on the site which your foreign visitors can be directed to automatically. This will allow you to provide vital information to the foreign visitors such as postage, costs, legals etc. Having specific and tailored landing pages will in turn increase conversion on your site.

Domain and Sub-domains It is important to set up sections of the domain to target specific regions. These sections are termed ‘sub-domains’ as they are offshoots of the main website. These sub-domains would have to use ISO standard domain names that are the recognised international letter codes for these regions. So for example www.yoursite.com/us would contain the US focused area of your site and www.yoursite.com/ca would contain the Canadian section of your website.

Hosting These sub-domains would need to be hosted in the country they are targeting. In other words, if you are looking to target the US, they would need the sub-domain to be hosted in a US location. The geographic position of the hosting address is vital because search engines want to return relevant local search results.

Looking Like You are Local The website should cater for your foreign customers with a national based telephone number and national contact address etc. Do not fall into the trap of getting valuable traffic to your site from international visitors only to fall at the last hurdle when they look and see you are not based in that country. Getting a number and address is actually really simple.

Cultural Content Changes As a minimum, content has to be local. Obviously if you want to sell products in Germany then your landing pages should be in German. Don’t underestimate colloquialisms and differences between the same languages. This extends to the keywords used where your products or services may have different names for example. A great tip is to run a region specific PPC campaign first to try out your keywords before committing to the SEO.

Region Specific Linking There is a need for a link campaign that focuses on securing links from websites based in the region you wan to target. The reason for this is to give search engines the impression that your website has information relevant to these regions. If for example the page content is aimed at a French market but all the links are from UK websites, then the French based search engines will perceive the site to be not as relevant as a French site with French links.

International Currency and Postage Details We would recommend that the postage details and costs in foreign currency are included on your site, or on at least the landing pages. In addition the installation of a currency converter is advised to make purchasing simpler for visitors.

Miromedia are here to assist you widen your net with expert international SEO. Please contact us if you would like to know more.