How to Carry Out International SEO On Your Website

How to Carry Out International SEO On Your Website

Most online content is in English, with very little actually being translated into other languages. This is saying something, since the two most spoken languages in the world are Mandarin and Spanish. English is the third most spoken language in the world, and funnily enough, the majority of online content is in English.

With rising populations across the world, by 2020, the audience for your writing will be huge – all from different countries. If you have a local business, then perhaps, tailoring your website to other languages may not be necessary, but if you have a business which has potential to sell to anyone in the world – international SEO is an essential.

You need to invest in getting your content translated because a couple years from now, a lot more business owners will be doing the same. You might even discover that a lot of your target audience is in other countries. Some of the most successful businesses have the most users in South America or Asia.

In this guide, we’ll take a look at the fundamentals of International SEO: including, translating your website, doing research on which countries to target most and much more!

Research The Top Countries You Should Be Targeting

Keyword Research In Other Languages

For English speakers, you are targeting a certain set of keywords with your website. It might be “birthday cards for fathers” or “luxury blinds”. These keywords target the English language only, so the most traffic you can get is from the UK, possibly the US, Australia and Ireland. These countries provide small populations, in contrast with the populations in other countries, which far exceed the population of the UK, US and Australia put together.

According to Bablic, did you know that 73% of people don’t search the web in English, but in their own language? So, with English, you are targeting at best, only 37% of your potential audience! Don’t let the other 73% of people go into the drain. All you have to do is find out which countries are actively searching for your keywords in other languages.

For example, if you sell luxury blinds in the UK, who says you can’t sell them in Spain or France? There might be huge potential in those markets. You need to find out.

To do this, simply translate your list of keywords into a popular language, like Spanish or French.

Plug your translated keyword into the Google AdWords Keyword Planner. You can then find out the number of monthly searches, and if it’s worth your time. Use this as a metric: If there are more people searching in that language, than in English – it’s a must to target that language! Even if a couple thousand monthly searches is all there is, they still are all monthly potential customers, who could find your site.

Google Analytics

To find out other countries which may be worth targeting, you can check your website’s Google Analytics statistics. Some customers in other countries (Sweden, for example) often search in English, if they want more choice in the products on offer, rather than just search in their country’s  language and get less choice. However, those few customers are very rare. According to Bablic, 56% of consumers say that browsing in their own language is more important than price. However, these customers might indicate which countries are highly interested in your products.

To find out where there are high concentrations of interested customers, simply log-in to your Google Analytics account and click the Audience tab. Click on “Geo” and then “Location”. You can then see which countries visitors are located. Whilst the UK and US might have the highest concentrations, you should check the countries with other languages. Maybe Brazil or Portugal have a few hundred users coming to your website every year, so that means, that you should investigate Portuguese as an option for a language to translate your website into. This method is not definitive though, it just gives a rough idea of potential countries or locations you could target.

In this image, I take a look at a website’s Google Analytics statistics to see which countries may be worth targeting. For this specific website, it looks like the Philippines and Malaysia provide a sufficient stream of traffic each month.

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Translate Your Website

Human Translation

One of the ways you can translate your website is through human translation. This ensures a professional and thorough translation which is very effective for bringing foreign customers to your website. Even if you don’t have the money for translating your website to many languages, even using human translation for one language is excellent. After you’ve done your research on which countries need targeting, you can see which language could bring the most gain.

Adding Your Translated Pages To Your Website

If you don’t want to get a country code top-level domain name for your website, you can allow your users to switch between languages, all on the same website. If you have translated your content, and want to submit it to your website, you should use a WordPress plugin called Polylang. You can add your translations to the plugin.

Let’s say you want to translate your website into three other languages. The plugin works, so that for every page you create in WordPress, there are three other empty pages created (one for each language) where you can add the translated text into. Polylang will then combine all those translated pages together, and create a translated version of your website. When a Spanish customer arrives at your site, the website will display in Spanish.

Using Google Translate

While human translation may not be an option for everyone, there is a free alternative. For example, you could invest in human translation (which is of higher quality than robotic translation) for one language or two, depending on where most of your potential customers are. However, if you just want a quick and fast way to provide translation for your website, Google Translate is an option. Its translations aren’t of a particularly high standard, though, so be warned. There is a better alternative available, called “Bablic” which we will take a look at in a moment.

For a quick translation of your website, try Google Translate. Firstly, you need to install the Google Language Translator plugin. This is available for WordPress only. With this plugin, Google Translate will automatically translate your webpages.

However, the translation is not automatically done, when a user arrives to your website. They still have to toggle between the languages. However, this plugin is still a great alternative to more technical, expensive options.

Bablic: Automatic Translation

Whilst human translation and Google Translate work well, there is a new alternative to the growing scene of localization. A startup called Bablic aims to help website owners translate their websites, in the click of a button with no programming experience or WordPress plugins whatsoever. Bablic are definitely pioneering the localization field and are making it increasingly easy to translate your website.

All you have to do is choose between human translation or machine translation, and select the languages you want. A code will be generated, and you have to paste that code into the header of your website. Then, when someone arrives at your site, they can get the content translated to whatever language they are fluent in.

Conclusion

It’s simple. Those that’ll translate their content will get a huge increase in traffic, customers and leads over anyone else.

With new startups like Bablic making localization easier than ever, you should definitely start thinking about translating your content. You can extend your reach, broaden your customer base and increase sales of products or services. A whole new audience of potential customers might be in another country, looking for a product like yours, and you might not even know it!

Google Confirms Mobile Page Load Speed as Ranking Factor

Google Confirms Mobile Page Load Speed as Ranking Factor
A recent article from Word Tracker has said that Google will start to use mobile page load speed as a ranking factor for its mobile friendly rankings. Trends Analyst Gary Illyes confirmed the impending change to mobile rankings and said that businesses should expect to see the impact of this within months.

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The rise of smartphones and tablets has overhauled the way we access information, with millions of us consuming hordes of information on the go every hour. Although this trend has been growing for quite some time, many companies have been falling behind by failing to create a mobile-friendly version of their website. If not developed specifically for mobile devices, standard domains accessed on a tablet or smartphone can be slow to load, difficult to navigate and poorly laid out.

As part of a push to streamline mobile browsing and improve mobile user experiences, Google has stepped up its efforts in recent months.

The plan to factor in mobile page load speed is one of a series of measures the search engine has unveiled in the last few months. It gave a hint of what was to come back in March, with Google Software Engineer, Klemen Kloboves saying, “Last year, we started using mobile-friendliness as a ranking signal on mobile searches. Today we’re announcing that beginning in May, we’ll start rolling out an update to mobile search results that increases the effect of the ranking signal to help our users find even more pages that are relevant and mobile-friendly.”

Confirmation that mobile page speed will be a ranking factor came at the Search Engine Summit earlier this month. In its announcement, the search engine alluded to the fact that it wants to dramatically improve performance of the mobile web. It highlighted the importance of good, clean mobile sites full of rich, valuable content which made it easy for mobile users to find the information they sought, whether they were on a phone, tablet or other device.

At present, Google doesn’t separate desktop signals in mobile SERPS, so if a company’s desktop site is fast, yet their mobile one is slow, they do not get penalized. The introduction of mobile-specific page speeds as a ranking factor means results pages will take into consideration both desktop and mobile site load times. This change will mean those who invest time and money in creating a suitable mobile user experience will be rewarded with better rankings and increased Google visibility.

Up until a couple of years ago, desktop searches exceeded mobile ones by a fairly hefty margin, however the proliferation of tablets and smartphones has seen a sea change in browsing habits in the last 12-18 months. As mobile browsing continues to go from strength to strength and dominate search engine traffic, it’s likely that Google will introduce even more tools and incentives to push for a better mobile experience for its users.

In addition to the mobile page load speed update, Google also confirmed that it is working on a wholly separate mobile search index, likely to be launched when their next updates – including the mobile-friendly algorithm – come into force. However there are still some problems to overcome before the new index can be rolled out. One of the biggest issues is a loss of ranking signals when converting parts of the current Google index into a mobile one.

For those who haven’t yet fully embraced mobile with responsive design functionality, Google has also revamped its mobile-friendly testing tool. The original tool has been expanded and linked from Google Search Console – simply type in a web address and the tool will check how mobile friendly the site is. It suggests next steps, flags up any areas of concern, creates a site-wide mobile usability report and has useful links to things like Google Webmaster information and discussion forums.

Effective SEO to Help Promote your Business

Effective SEO to Help Promote your Business
Whether you are just starting up your business or have an existing website which isn’t doing a great deal for your, then call Direct Submit today and let us help you make your website stand out from the crowd. As experienced Internet Marketing and SEO consultants we will be able to help you make the right choices and decisions to help you get your product or service noticed online.

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Direct Submit SEO Services
An effective SEO strategy will make your website easy to find for users and search engine robots. SEO helps the search engines to understand what each page on the website is about, therefore content strategy plays a big role in the SEO tactics.

Search Engine Optimisation (SEO) should be an essential part of your businesses marketing strategy. Put simply, its job is to increase your enquiries and to make sales. Properly applied, SEO will help your companies website appear higher up the natural search engine rankings for targeted key phrases. This is where Direct Submit can help you and your business.

As leading UK Internet Marketing and SEO consultants, we are committed to providing you with the highest level of service and expertise. All our clients are unique and each receives customised strategy that utilises today’s best practices for your business. Our Search Engine Optimisation (SEO) services are designed to increase the visibility of your website within the natural (or free) search engine rankings to deliver quality, targeted traffic to your website.

The Search Engines, most notably Google, are continuously changing and updating how they rank for search results. To ensure your website remains successful within the search engines, you need time, expertise and energy to focus on recognising these changes.

At Direct Submit, we believe every company is unique and we deliver a specific range of SEO services designed to help ensure the optimum performance of your website.

Call us today on 0845 2722350 and get your website working harder for your business.

Small Business Websites Falling Victim to Hackers

Small Business Websites Falling Victim to Hackers
According to newly released Google Transparency Report safe browsing statistics, over 10 million internet users encounter unsafe websites delivering malware and spam every week. Google says many of the pages falling victim are small business websites and personal blogs. The search engine says many compromised site owners are unaware there is a problem, visitors are turned away with a ‘This site may be unsafe’ warning meaning a lack of traffic, and when the problem is detected, often there is a lack of cyber security know-how to fix the issue and restore the site.

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Internet Security
Security on the web is paramount, especially for webmasters striving to create a coordinated and enjoyable online experience for their visitors. But with statistics showing more than 10m users encountering harmful websites every week, just how deep does this security issue go – and how can webmasters make their sites more secure for their audience?

The figures are certainly worrying, both for those browsing the web and the webmasters attempting to keep their site free from hackers, malware or scams. Over the last year, Google says it has detected more than 800,000 compromised websites, with 16,500 new ones springing up every week, from all over the globe.

The unfortunate visitors to these sites find themselves looking at scam content and malware, often with downloads inserting themselves onto the computer. Many of the scams are fairly easy to spot, and many users have software installed which alerts them to these fake sites – but they are becoming ever more sophisticated, and the uninitiated can fall for the dirty tactics employed by the malware creators.

In order to help webmasters protect their websites and their businesses, Google teamed up with the University of California, Berkeley, to devise new methods of reaching out to compromised site owners quickly and to expedite recovery. It says, “When Google works directly with webmasters during critical moments like security breaches, we can help 75% of webmasters re-secure their content. The whole process takes a median of 3 days. This is a better experience for webmasters and their audience.”

Staying safe
The big question then is how can webmasters protect themselves against these kinds of hacks and ensure that their visitors aren’t exposed to potentially harmful content? How can compromised sites be repaired and measures put in place to stop it happening again?

If you’re a webmaster concerned about the figures above, try these strategies to protect your site and safeguard your online reputation.

Keep everything up-to-date
One of the most effective ways to protect your website is to ensure that all the platforms and scripts your website utilises are kept up-to-date. The downside of using open-source software is that the code is available to hackers, who can take their time to pinpoint security loopholes they can exploit. By keeping your scripts and platforms totally up to date, you can minimize the risk of hackers exploiting loopholes – but it’s important to remember that this method alone will not be enough to secure your site fully.

Encrypt login pages, and limit sharing of login data
Using encryption on your login pages is essential when it comes to ensuring that hackers can’t get hold of your login credentials. SSL encryptions are among the most popular – this is the type that makes ‘https://’ appear at the beginning of the URL. When you use this type of encryption, it means that the information entered there is meaningless to any third-party who may have come across it, and cannot be interpreted or translated in any way.

You should also ensure that you’re not handing out login details to those who don’t necessarily need it. Rather than allowing coworkers, third-party service providers or other associates to use your login information, create separate accounts for them and ensure that their permissions are kept up-to-date. Remove or downgrade permissions immediately if they leave the company or change their role, and remind all users to change their passwords regularly.

Utilise Google’s tools
Google offers a multitude of tools across a number of its properties that can help you remain vigilant when it comes to your website’s security. The site:search feature accessible from the search page allows you to check for suspicious URLs or directories associated with your website. The Search Queries page in Analytics lets you check out the significant keywords that Google has found on your website. If you’re seeing unexpected keywords (terms like ‘casino’, ‘viagra’ and ‘loans’ are among the most common), it’s likely your site’s security has been breached.

Google plays a big part in helping to detect malware, which is why it is important to set up and verify your website in Google Search Console. If it picks up any suspicious activity on your site, it’ll send you a notification via your Message Centre. Not all webmasters check their Message Centre regularly, so you should have these notifications set up to forward to your email account, to ensure that you receive them quickly after they’re sent.

Change your CMS settings from the default
A lot of malicious website attacks are carried out by automated systems which depend entirely on sites using the default CMS settings. These attacks are the most common attacks on websites, and this can be rectified simply by changing your settings. Make sure you adjust things like comment controls, visibility of user information and file permissions to bolster your security and protect your site further.

Scan regularly
Schedule in a regular scan of your website using one of the many scanning services out there – if you haven’t used one before, tools like Norton Safe Web, McAfee SiteAdvisor and Google Safe Browsing Diagnostics are all safe bets. These services will pick up on malware and suspicious pieces of code that may have latched onto your website, so that you can remove them as soon as you find them. If you neglect regular scans, your site could be vulnerable to hidden code or suspicious malware coming in under your radar and infecting potentially thousands of users’ devices.

Work from a safe computer
Try to avoid updating or maintaining your website from a public computer, if you can help it. Access it only from your own device, and ensure that your software is up to date, you have no viruses and have carried out a malware / anti-virus check recently.

Subscribe to security updates
Many hosting companies and publishing platforms have their own RSS feed providing updates on security issues. Stay up-to-date on the latest happenings on your platform, as well as gaining useful insight into improving your security or closing known loopholes.

Keep your site clean
Attackers thrive on the hidden files, redirects and remote inclusions tucked away in the deep directories of your website in order to plant and deliver their malware. Ensure that your site is cleaned up regularly by deleting any content or files that your site isn’t using.

These simple steps will help to enhance the security of your website significantly – and while there is no guarantee that you’ll never be hacked, you’ll be one step ahead if you continue to keep up with these tips and steps. Be prepared, be vigilant and be pro-active about your security, and you (and your users) should stay safe.

View the full Google study for more on this topic here: Remedying Web Hijacking: Notification Effectiveness and Webmaster Comprehension.

Direct Submit Facebook Page

The Direct Submit Facebook Page
The well-established Direct Submit Facebook Page has now passed the ‘1,000 likes’ point and continues to grow. The page contains loads of useful SEO news and guides, plus updates on some of the many Direct Submit clients.  Some of the most recent SEO guides include information on key word research, the importance of local SEO and the potential benefits to your business of SEO and Internet Marketing.

Local Search Engine Optimisation (SEO)

Why Local Search Engine Optimisation (SEO) is Important
Search Engine Optimisation (SEO) is the process of affecting the visibility of a website or a web page in a search engine’s “natural” or un-paid (“organic”) search results. The higher your website / business ranks in the search results then it follows that your website / business should receive more visitors.

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Local Search Engine Optimisation (SEO)  is now a critical part of any business marketing plan – or it should be as it is estimated that around 90% of consumers now use the Internet and Search Engines when looking for a Local Business or service.

Local search, or searching for local businesses on search engines, is becoming one of the most popular search types on the web as more and more people start to use search engines to search for a local service.

Traditional means of marketing are not only typically very expensive, but are also now considered by many to be much less effective than they used to be. Consumers now find all they need in the Internet’s Search Engines and for most people (for over 90% of people in the UK) this means Google.

We all know that SEO is critical, enabling your Website to be found by new potential clients in the Search Engines.  Gone are the days when word of mouth was enough to bring you knew clients. The old adage “build it and they will come” now definitely does not apply.

The current market is ultra-competitive and only the strongest businesses survive.

Here are just a few of the Internet searches made in the average MONTH to the Google Search Engine for one region in the UK:

> 1600 people searched online for a local Builder
> Over 1000 people looked for a local Plumbing Service
> 2400 people looked for a local Solicitor 5400 people searched for a local Florist

And remember, this is just in one month! For this reason alone, the Search Engines are now more important than ever for Local Businesses.

Your website needs to be optimised and set up to attract new customers to your business. It needs to be easy for the Search Engines to understand what search terms you are set up for and hoping to promote.

If your business isn’t using proper search engine optimisation targeted toward local, you could be missing out on a stream of potential visitors who are twice more likely to buy than visitors who come across your site by any other means.

If you have a service or product you want to promote to the local community, you need Local Search Engine Optimisation. More and more people are using the search engines to search for local services and it is reported to be one of the fastest growing areas for ‘searches’ online. Direct Submit are experts with a proven track record in local Internet Marketing.

Our Approach to Effective SEO

Our Approach to Effective SEO

Search Engine Optimisation (SEO) is the process of affecting the visibility of a website or a web page in a search engine’s unpaid results, often referred to as “natural,” “organic,” or “earned” results. Effective SEO is often an involved and often time consuming process that requires a good deal of expertise, research and modification of your website. This process helps the likes of Google and Bing knows your website exists and hopefully ranks it well for the selected key phrases.

Simply put, our approach to SEO typically will is built around:

  • » Key Phrase Research
  • » Website Analysis & Compliance
  • » SEO Promotion & Marketing
  • » Linking Strategy
  • » Ongoing Monitoring & Maintenance

Direct Submit prides itself on the underlying process by which we approach each and every SEO project we are involved with. We understand that each client will have specific, individual needs and our approach in creating and implementing the correct SEO strategy is vital to the success of the SEO project.

This approach and attention to detail is what has helped Direct Submit become a leading Search Engine Optimisation (SEO) company. Call us today on 0845 2722350 and get your website working harder for your business.

Reasons Why SEO Is Essential for Business

 A Few Reasons Why SEO Is Essential for Business
If you are a new business owner or a long-time business owner, then chances are you have been barraged with information about how essential it is to have a company website and, in recent years, a social media presence. In today’s business world, however, these two things are only the starting point.

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Now more than ever, search engine optimisation or SEO is what allows your current and potential clients to find you through targeted keyword searches so that you can in turn sell your products and service through your website and Facebook and Twitter feeds. Following are three of the most important reasons for developing an effective SEO marketing campaign in today’s business climate:

Online reviews
The good news is that your online reviewers are, in a sense, providing your SEO for free; the bad news is that you get what you pay for.

Depending on what your existing customers are saying about your product or service, this “free service” they are providing may or may not be a good thing. Although you run a sound business and are doing everything within reason to keep your clients happy, the fact remains that only those who have had either a very good or a very poor (in their view) experience dealing with you are going to take the time to create an account and log on to a customer review website to tell the world what was so wonderful – or not so wonderful – about your business.

If you don’t go to the trouble of telling potential clients what you can do for them in your own words, then you are leaving yourself at the mercy of those speaking for you. Even if unsolicited reviews of your company are overwhelmingly positive, customers looking for your service want, need and deserve more. In the interest of building your brand, it is imperative that you give potential a better sense of what to expect than most reviewers can.

Smartphones and tablets
The last time you paid your company’s liability insurance – or your home or automobile insurance – you might have been directed to an “app” through which payment could be made electronically. As a business owner, what this should tell you is that mobile devices such as smartphones and tablets have become so commonplace that more and more service-oriented companies have committed to providing apps as a means of improving access to their products and services. Smartphones and tablets are also being more widely used to search online for local products and services – hotels, restaurants, tow trucks and auto repair shops in the event of an unexpected mechanical failure, you name it. Any business which fails to seize on the opportunity to increase visibility through a local SEO marketing campaign does so at its peril.

The competition
If you decide to invest in SEO for no other reason, do it because your competitors are already on board. Particularly in industries in which individual businesses face lots of competition, it pays to invest in an organic SEO campaign which shows your current and future clients what is unique about your business, be it your location or any way in which your product or service is different from and better than all the rest. Don’t let the lack of an SEO marketing strategy keep your business from being as profitable as it can be!

Direct Submit Internet Marketing Services is dedicated to helping businesses of any size and in all sectors to reach and exceed their profit goals through effective and ethical SEO marketing. Whether yours is an established business with a website in need of more traffic or you’re just now venturing into cyberspace, Direct Submit will develop the ideal SEO marketing campaign to bring in new clients so that you can focus on the core business while watching revenues soar.

We provide a diverse range of  SEO and other Internet marketing strategies for UK businesses both large and small – at affordable costs. No matter your advertising budget, we will work with you to develop a campaign to help your clients find you right when they need you.

To learn more about how we can help you maximise profits, call us today on 0845 272 2350 or visit our Internet Marketing Services website today.

Google Bans Pay Day Loan Companies from AdWords

Google Bans Pay Day Loan Companies from AdWords
Google has updated its AdWords policy on lending products and taken an ethical stand against those who offer quick loans with astronomically high APRs, by effectively banning them from paid search.

As of July 13th 2016, Google will no longer run ads for loans where repayment is due within 60 days of the date of issue. In the US Google is also banning ads for loans with an APR of 36% or higher.

According to AdGooroo, this will mean Google forfeiting $34.5 million in advertising revenue as a result of its new ban.

4,211 advertisers sponsored 726 payday loan keywords on US Google desktop search last year, at an average cost per click of $5.32.

As the top advertiser on the 726 payday loan keywords, MoneyMutual spent nearly $2.7 million with Google on that keyword group alone in 2015.

Google News launches ‘Local Source’ Tag

Google News launches ‘Local Source’ Tag to Boost Local News Sources
According to a 2015 Pew Research study, “nearly nine out of 10 residents follow local news closely and about half do so very closely” and with more than 75,000 news sources being local, Google has introduced a Local section in Google News.

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According to its blog-post, this new section will “surface content from regional papers to hyper-local blogs that otherwise wouldn’t appear in national news.”

And to ensure that local stories remain in the news cycle and are properly credited with their initial ‘legwork’ once a story has gone national, a new ‘Local Source’ tag is available across all Google News editions.

Unfortunately these tags can’t be manually added, instead they’re automatically added by Google. It does this by “looking at where a publisher has written about in the past and comparing that to the story location.”