The Ultimate SEO Checklist of a Multilingual Website
Multilingual websites are becoming a final mainstream for all business as it helps to cover a huge market base, which ultimately leads to higher revenue generation.
But before building a multilingual website it is very important that your site is search engine friendly and includes the best SEO practices so that the site is optimized for global content. The elements that contribute to great SEO also help to improve the overall user experience and also ensures that the site ranks highly and benefits both business and customers.
Identifying the potential markets:
Even this is the first time that you are putting your effort to develop your website to target more than one country, it will still be visible in other countries. Since you may get traffic from other countries also, it is very important to use Google Analytics to check the traffic that are coming from various countries and languages using the GEO location tab under the audience section.
Considering on page and off page SEO
1.On page SEO: This refers to the elements that include the architecture, coding and the web content itself and this can be directly controlled by the digital agency or the website owner.
2.Off page SEO: This refers to the elements that are external or outside the website, like social media or inbound links. Though these elements can be influenced through targeted efforts, it requires considerable effort and time to get great results.
User dedicated URLs:
One of the most important things that needs to be considered for multilingual sites is duplicate content. Content that appears same within multiple URLs may lead to penalties by Google. In order to avoid this, Google recommends using dedicated URLs that include a language indicator. This indicator helps the search engines and the users to identify the language from the URLs. The language indicators can be placed in URL basically depends on the domain structure you choose. The three most important choices are Top level domain, Subdomain, Subdirectory.
Identify the keywords:
Engaging content is very important for your business and SEO is a prime element for your website. The foundation of a good SEO strategy is to choose the best keywords for your multilingual site and this goes beyond translation. The keyword selection should involve the relevant terms for your audience.
Title tag and description tag:
The title tag and the description tag are pieces of information that should be included on web pages and these tags are visible in the SERPs when performing a search. The title tag consists of 55 to 60 characters and this is unique for each page and the description tag is of 50 to 300 characters and is descriptive and appealing that includes the primary keywords and offers information about the visitors and is also unique for every web page.
This is an HTML tag that is within the section of the web pages’ source code and helps the Google crawlers to understand that the pages and folders on the website are targeted for a specific country. In order to avoid any duplicate content issues, you should use the rel=”alternate” tag, so that the search engine can understand that various language versions of the site are alternate versions used to target different locations instead of duplicates.
There are multiple ways to target your site at different countries and this includes website structure, using the local IP addresses. If you want to use sub domains or sub directories to structure your international website, then you can easily target them by using the Google Search Console. This helps to inform Google that you want your site to be served in the SERPs displayed by Google.com
“Thus, while creating a multilingual site, there are several SEO factors to consider so that your web content is not considered duplicate by the search engines. Addressing the issues will help to boost the rankings, and also help to improve the overall user experience.”