International SEO: Geo Targeting

International SEO can be challenging, depending on how many different countries and/or languages you need to take into consideration for optimal results.

Search engines can identify targeted countries and languages, but you need to do the work to lay the path. This is called Geo-Targeting.

A good base for Geo Targeting, as with any SEO campaign, is content. Your content needs to be relevant to the area, the country, and the people in it. You need to take into consideration culture, and how they differ across the world.

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Think about your layout, the colours you use, the way you talk, and even the sense of humour you use. Each country and culture will respond differently to each of these.

Ideally for Geo Targeting, you want to have either separate sites, or sub-directories for each different region.

This can really be the best way to go, as it allows you to optimise a specific site/page uniquely for that region/country. The page needs to be in that country’s primary language and relevant in other ways, such as currency and time zone.

Language Meta tags must be used so search engines understand what language it is and this helps them to identify the region you’re targeting. Do not use cookies or script, as search engines cannot crawl these.

Some other tactics when approaching Geo Targeting:

  1. Hosting the website(s) on a local IP
  2. Linking to local content
  3. Building/learning links from local resource
  4. Geo Targeting in Webmaster Tools
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