Website Translation or International SEO?

Website Translation or International SEO?

It is interesting to note that, according to Google, there are monthly 12,100 searches for the phrase “Website Translation” and only 1,000 for “International SEO”. Of course, there are other phrases of importance such as “multilingual SEO” but that’s even small and actually there are a great many more varieties of website translation phrase than international SEO.

By my reckoning, that roughly means that only 8% of people who translate their website bother at any point to either consider SEO or to buy a service for it. Is that possible? Although it’s a pretty crude calculation, I’d say that figure is no exaggeration. Far more people translate than employ any kind of SEO – which is much more the cream on the cake.

Oh No It Isn’t…

Translation and the localisation industry is a much older industry than SEO with professional standards, university courses and strict regulation. Personally, I’ve lost more sleepless night over language exams than I’ve ever done over SEO or search marketing tests. The Google Adwords Professional scheme being the only thing that has really tested (more frustrating than testing actually…).

But that doesn’t mean that localisation professionals shouldn’t start to get more interested in SEO. In the case of large corporations, they are often spending the bulk of the company’s investment in content and international SEO processes should be thought about as part of the whole localisation project. Going further, decision making surrounding which content to localise in the first place – assuming that it is not ALL web-based content – should be conditioned by keyword research to determine which content it is in the company’s interests to translate.

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Katia Reed
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