SEO Localization: Optimizing the multilingual side of search
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How the right translation can yield the wrong keyword AND how the wrong keyword can adversely affect your Google score on all your websites.

SEO Localization is more than translating keywords

SEO Localization is about optimizing the multilingual side of search. So when your Chinese, Spanish, French, or German prospect, for example, is searching for what you have worked so hard to produce and communicate on your website – they can find you at the top of the heap of other related options.

Employing the right keywords in each language is essential and will make a huge difference to your natural rankings and PPC results in local markets. Using straight translations of your English keywords will not readily produce the correct set of keywords for your local market.

Taken to an extreme, when mistranslated, your “keywords” can help reduce Google’s relevancy score for your entire site. Much international business growth today happens because of the power of search, so you need to be sure your website  is optimized for the markets you are selling to.

SEO Localization

Why shouldn’t you just translate your keywords?

Here’s why: Words have multiple meaning, as can product names and service descriptions.  If you ponder the word for word translation in any given language I’m sure you can imagine .

If you were to consider using “Windshield repair” as a keyword from your English language website, the correct straight translation into French would be “réparation pare-brise”.  However, it may not be the best keyword to use on your French site.  By using the Google Keyword Suggestion tool, you will see that this translation has a lower local search volume than some of the alternative suggestions such as, “auto pare brise” or “moto pare brise”.  If you were trying to attract more traffic to your French web site, we would advise you to use one of these alternative French keywords since they produce a higher local search volume as well as having a similar meaning.

You would also want to make sure the name of the web page, URL, meta data and any other related text contains the right keywords for optimum Google indexing and ranking.

For your UK English version, you would also have to adapt your keyword to “Windscreen Repair” instead of “Windshield Repair”, since this term, and many other terms for car parts, have different English names in the UK and US markets.  Since Google gives your site an overall relevancy score for each keyword, if you are using keywords on your French sites and UK site which aren’t optimized it will bring down your overall score.

To see how YBD Translations can help you optimize your multilingual websites, we offer Multilingual SEO Audits for each of your target markets, where we take 25 of your most lucrative keywords and give you back actionable recommendations which will help you eliminate wasteful ad spending and improve SEO on your local language web sites.  Contact us directly for details.