When you are going to set up a multi-language website, there are diverse, multilingual SEO (Search Engine Optimization) factors that you need to consider.
First and foremost, you need to make sure that your targeted audience sees the accurate pages according to their location on your multilingual website. Moreover, you have to stay aware of the penalties of duplicate content.
Luckily, Google came out with the best solutions for any multilingual website, which can surely help the site rank higher in search engines.
So, in this article, I’ll tell you all the ins and outs of multilingual websites and how SEO can help to optimize these sites.
Therefore, read till the end so that you can effectively use SEO for your multilingual websites!
SEO for Multilingual Websites: What is it and When Can You Use it
Multilingual SEO is one of the effective ways that you can choose to optimize your website’s content for different kinds of languages so that you can become searchable in the new markets, and people from all over the world can easily find your website just by organic search.
Many SEO experts might tell you multilingual SEO means you have to develop and optimize your website for native speakers worldwide except for your own language.
But the matter of fact is most internet users prefer American English, and this might also be your own native language as well. But did you know that English is the third most vastly spoken language in the entire world?
So, even if the majority of the audience is in the U.S, you’ll still see that not all the visitors to your website are English speakers.
It surely can be appealing to depend entirely on Google translate, which most non-English speakers use to translate the things they are searching for. But in reality, if you are aiming to get far better results both for your content and SEO, then you should definitely go for a multilingual SEO strategy.
Ways You Can Improve Your SEO Multilingual Website
In this section, I’ll tell you all the ways by which you can improve your website’s search engine ranks and keep your multilingual website top-notch!
1. Use Dedicated and Appealing URLs
One of the primary fears of many multi-language website owners is having duplicate content.
Although not every duplicate content has a negative impact. But content that appears in multiple URLs can lead to penalties to your website like deindexing or even lowering the ranks.
So to avoid any such mishappenings, one of the best Google’s practices is to use “dedicated URLs” that also include some language indicator.
Such indicators allow users and search engines to recognize the language easily from the URL itself—for instance, a website with an authentic page of www.example.com. And now, if it’s in the French version, then it simply could be www.example.com/fr/.
But even a language indicator can be misapprehended. Therefore, defining the URL parameters is undoubtedly one of the essential steps to make sure your website is SEO-compatible.
2. Use Hreflang Tags
Google even uses hreflang tags and attributes to easily determine the region the site is intended for and the language of the entire page.
These tags are inserted in the page’s header section or can even be submitted using a sitemap. For instance, an hreflang tag that is referencing a French page planned for the readers staying in Canada might look like this:
<link rel=”alternate” hreflang=”fr-ca”
And if the page is designed for many other regions, you definitely need to use multiple hreflang tags and attributes. However, it can indeed be very complicated and time-consuming, especially for beginners.
In that case, you can indeed use the Weglot translation. This will automatically complete that step for you. Therefore, you don’t actually need to worry about putting in your own code. Moreover, you can even use Weglot’s hreflang tag checker to check if all the setup is done correctly.
3. Translate the Metadata
If you have content knowledge, you already know what necessary role metadata plays in ranking your content.
So when you make a multilingual website, you need to make sure that all your contents are well translated. Even your metadata needs to be translated as well so that it can rank for the countries you’re targeting for.
But it’s not at all an easy task to do. Translating your metadata word by word can indeed be a tough job.
Although there are tools that can help you do it faster and comparatively more accessible, it can be challenging, especially if you are a beginner.
4. Make Sure the Website Loads Faster
One thing you need to do is make sure that your multilingual SEO makes your website faster.
And it’s not that complicated to do. Just keep in mind that the faster your website loads, the more traffic you’ll have towards your website. Thus, the higher you will rank.
These are a few easy wins implementing strategies you can use to put a huge difference in your website’s loading time:
- Install plugin that allows page caching
- Set up browser caching
- Improve the size of the images
- Integrate CDN with the website
When you create a multilingual website, there are a few significant SEO factors that you always need to consider.
Make sure you avoid any duplicate content in your website and also keep your content clear for the readers of your website to understand and relate quickly.
These factors will not just affect your website’s ranking but will give the intended people a great user experience.
I hope this article has helped you to know the crucial details of the role of SEO for multilingual websites.