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Putting Your B2B SEO to Work on an International Stage

Clients who’ve implemented properly optimized foreign-language websites have received increased leads.

It’s great to have a well-designed website, properly optimized according to B2B SEO best practices. But, if your company targets markets outside of the U.S. and Canada, a well-designed, well-optimized English-language website might not be enough.

You’ll usually find the best success globally when you design your marketing efforts with your international audiences in mind. It might sound daunting, but the good news is that the basics of B2B SEO work well in any language, if you keep in mind the following tips:

Use the right domain name.

If you’ve got deep pockets, you can buy a language-specific domain name for each country you market to and host each website in that specific country. This requires a lot of resources – including hiring and maintaining a web-editing staff in each country – and demands an incredible amount of oversight to make sure that each website remains up-to-date.

An option that’s more time- and cost-efficient while still being highly effective, is to create separate sections within your own website to target each country. Each section should be labeled with the abbreviation for that country, such as yourdomain.com/mx for a website targeting Mexico or yourdomain.com/de for a website designed for prospective customers in Germany.

Translate everything.

That little “de” at the end of yourdomain.com/de is critical – it signals to prospects in Germany that you’re in tune with their needs and are truly interested in their business. “yourdomain.com/germany,” on the other hand, illustrates laziness or a lack of attention to detail that will turn off prospects, often permanently.

The country abbreviation at the end of your domain is just the beginning of what should be translated. Aside from the text on each page, other elements that should be translated include:

  • SEO components, like the title and meta description and keyword tags
  • Navigation buttons
  • Page file names (i.e. yourdomain.com/de/kontakt.html instead of yourdomain.com/de/contact.html)
  • Image captions
  • Text links on your English-language website indicating where to click for the websites designed for other countries, i.e. “Deutschland” or simply “Deutsche”.

Hire a professional translator.

Don’t rely on Google’s translation tool or other freebie online translation services. Those can be useful for casual translation questions, but they are not the right tools for a corporate website.

It might be tempting to task the project to a staff member who’s fluent in the language, but do you really want to distract that person from his or her main duties for a weeks-long task involving the translation of thousands of words?

Hiring a professional translator to provide technically accurate translated content is worth the money to ensure you receive the most appropriate translation in a timely fashion.

Follow up with content marketing.

Once you’ve launched your website in a new language, a bit of content marketing – a few articles in industry publications in the appropriate country, a few links in related online directories – can give your new efforts the boost they need to succeed.

And the process does succeed – Pilot Fish clients who’ve implemented properly optimized foreign-language websites have received increased leads from their target audiences. Click here to read a real-world example of successful international SEO in action.

Contact Pilot Fish today for B2B SEO that will deliver for your company.