Achieving the perfect search engine optimization (SEO) strategy for any website can often feel nigh on impossible. With Google and many other search engines regularly changing their search algorithms, it’s a constant battle trying to attract the right web searchers to your website. Throw another language into the mix and making the most of your keywords can feel like climbing Mount Everest.
But if you learn to love it more than you hate it, and you follow a few simple tips on how to make your multilingual keywords work for you, you’re guaranteed to see results.
Whereas the English-speaking Internet is bursting at the seams with content, there’s plenty of multilingual web space up for grabs, giving your website less competition and more potential to be found in searches. With a whole host of reasons to go multilingual, here are some top tips on how to get started.
Understanding Multilingual Keywords
Regardless of what language your website is written in, keywords are the answer to getting it ranked highly on search engines. They are the vital link between what people are searching for and what is on your website, and whether your website ranks as relevant to a user’s search is based purely on the presence of your keywords.
Simply put, if you don’t have the key search words in your website, your website just won’t be found. Working keywords into your copy is the cheapest and most effective way to increase online presence. With the right keywords, you can dramatically increase your company’s online presence.
Choose The Perfect Keywords
How do you go about finding your multilingual keywords? You may already have a good selection of words in English and these are a great starting point.
Employ a translation agency or local professional to translate the terms; their input is worth every cent, as cultural insight and language skills will ensure your keywords match local searches.
You can also get a little more proactive. Use online tools, such as Google AdWords, to get a feel for how the local market is searching for your brand or product.
Remember though that people don’t search for things using corporate technical language. Instead they pick more day-to-day phrases – and this means that you should too. Try to Cherry-pick those keywords that have good search volumes and little competition.
Incorporate Your Keywords Into Your Website
Don’t go crazy and put keywords everywhere. Remember, less is more.
Most keywords – for example, your product name – will naturally crop up in website copy. But with the others a more subtle approach is required and the worst mistake you could make is to add keywords where they don’t belong.
Not only will you bore your readers and the content will lack natural flow, but the pages can be flagged-up by search engines as spam. A great tip is to apply the power of one; use them once in the article title, once in the description, once in bold, and once in italics. If it reads a little clunky, take it out and try it somewhere else.
Track Your Keyword Success
Once you’ve added the keywords, you can start to monitor their performance. Keyword trends can change pretty quickly, so tracking their success is just as important as using them.
Google Analytics is a great online tool for rating performance. Those that aren’t generating any customer traffic should be tweaked. Simply changing one word or shortening another, from automobile to auto for example, can see a dramatic peak in traffic.
Make Your Content Current
Search engines thrive on current information. Not only does topical content make your website a much more interesting page for your users, but it increases your SEO, as their contemporaneity naturally ranks higher. Blogs, Twitter feeds and news articles are great ways to incorporate new content and, more importantly, offer you a chance to build in your keywords. Relevant and current copy also shows an understanding of more locally important issues.
Use Search Engines Other Than Google
if you’re going multilingual is that there’s more than just Google. Although it is the most popular search engine worldwide, in some areas local competitors are dominant.
Baidu is the most commonly used search engine in China, for example, while Yandex is the market leader in Russia. Refine your SEO approach for each search engine. Use their data analysis tools (Baidu Keyword and YandexWordstat) to check your keywords.
With these simple tips, you can really maximize your website’s potential. In just a couple of months, you’ll soon see your rankings improve and the number of visitors increase.
Meet Your Favorite Search Engine Watch Contributors
Many of SEW's leading expert contributors will be at ClickZ Live, the new online and digital marketing event kicking off in New York (March 31-April 3). Hear from the likes of: Thom Craver, Josh Braaten, Lisa Barone, Simon Heseltine, Josh McCoy, Lisa Raehsler, Greg Jarboe, Dan Cristo, Joseph Kerschbaum, John Gagnon, Eric Enge and more!