If you run any kind of website or blog, you will have heard of SEO. But what exactly is it? Essentially, it is a technique for increasing the visibility of your website in search engine results. Since many web users only look at the first page of the results, SEO is vital for your website. Users often search for keywords on search engines like Google, Bing and Yahoo and, by using an algorithm, the search engine combs through websites looking for those that contain the keywords, thereby determining its ranking.
Despite the perceived dominance of English on the Internet, less than 30% of web users speak it as their first language. This alone highlights the importance of multilingual SEO in an increasingly global setting. If businesses wish to effectively market their products online, they must cater to their international audience.
Multilingual SEO means making the tags and keywords you use available in different languages so that you have the option to expand your business to different international markets. There is a common misconception that a machine translation tool is sufficient for translating these keywords. However, there are huge benefits to using a native translator to ensure the keywords are translated in a clever and well thought out way.
A native translator is able to put themselves in the mind of someone searching online, using commonly used terms as opposed to a literal translation. For example, the standard French translation of “car insurance” is “l’assurance automobile”, however, a translator who has knowledge of SEO will be aware that “auto assurance” is much more commonly searched for online. This kind of knowledge is absolutely key in improving your website’s search engine ranking, which is essential for expanding your audience.
Furthermore, localisation also helps achieve this. For example, if you wish to enter the Latin American market, you will likely prefer the term “suéter” to “jersey” for jumper, as it is the equivalent in Latin American Spanish. For a clothing company this will open a door to a completely new audience that can easily access and search for products. In this way, careful research and linguistic knowledge prove their worth regarding multilingual SEO.
In short, investing time in multilingual SEO is investing in your company’s future as it ensures growth and engagement with a wider audience by consolidating your online presence, giving you a clear advantage over your competitors.