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New International Site - Strategy Help Needed
Posted 29 November 2006 - 02:31 AM
The product has international reach and the market for each country has very different ideas on how to search for this product. There is some overlap in core kw phrases but I need to have pages dedicated to either US or UK searchers (and in due course translated pages) as to merge them would become a copywriting / usability weakness.
So, given that I will need:
USA / international English-language content
What is the best way to start out?
I have .com and .co.uk domains and so could have dedicated site for UK and USA. Primary market is UK at the moment but we do aim to conquer the world so need to think about the bigger picture now.
I'd absolutely love some advice! Thank you in advance.
Posted 29 November 2006 - 06:58 AM
Posted 29 November 2006 - 06:59 AM
Do you happen to have different versions of your software for each country? If so, you can explain why and have different pages. Otherwise, you ought to worry more about what you are saying, and less about how you spell "colour." There are ways to write English that everybody can understand well. You have to avoid local idioms, and stick with "International English."
For other markets, you translate the pages and link them to each other. You don't need to translate the entire website, though. I have another site where we have 15 languages, but most of them are just one welcome page with contact info. Since we are targeting engineers with advanced education, most can read English, but having a page in their local language is a nice touch that shows that we are dedicated to their market. Also, the contact info on those pages leads to a local sales rep who can speak their language.
Ian should be around soon with even better info.
Posted 29 November 2006 - 10:14 AM
So I would go for separate versions of the web page in each of the most important versions of English: US, UK (Canadian, Australian ). This is obviously a no-brainer if the software will be sold in each country in the currency of that country. Then you would have to have separate pages.
Posted 29 November 2006 - 11:19 AM
But I'm hoping it won't go so far as to require separate pages with the same general content but targeted to specific national/regional keywords. With three locations to promote, I figure we can just optimize each of them for different terms, but we'll have to see how that goes.
Posted 30 November 2006 - 02:37 AM
Sell people what they they are looking for.
Posted 30 November 2006 - 05:40 AM
Posted 30 November 2006 - 05:57 AM
I work for a multi-national engineering company (so a bit different from your situation perhaps) but we've found it is better to have content dedicated to the market you're aiming at. Even small things such as how words are spelt can make a reader believe something is less relevant to their situation. It depends on how sensitive your readers are likely to be to this and how competitive your market is.
There's also nothing quite like actually talking to those you are hoping to sell to and see what they think. It doesn't take many conversations to get a feel for the best route. You could also consider making it easy for visitors to your future site to provide feedback when they use your contact form - this way you get continual testing! Best of luck.
Posted 30 November 2006 - 06:01 AM
Also, hardly anyone says says "I want to hire an apartment?" in Britain these days.
Also, "rent a flat" is favoured above "rent an apartment".
Off course you still need to worry about what to use within key phrases - remember SEO...
Posted 30 November 2006 - 06:05 AM
I might be an exception to the rule having moved from the Netherlands to the UK, but even when I was living in the Netherlands I preferred my technical stuff in English. I just can't work with translated technical/programming terms and I've read quite a few translated documents where I though, hmm, is this accurate or did someone make a translation mistake?
If people are interested and I think of it I'll do a quick pole with friends / family still living at home to see what their preferences are.
Just my 2c.
Posted 30 November 2006 - 04:15 PM
Posted 05 December 2006 - 01:41 PM
In your original message you said "each country has very different ideas on how to search for this product." To me, this translates into "very different keywords/keyphrases."
Assuming that you are looking to rank well in the SERP's, how do you plan to optimize your page title, tags and copywriting for all those keyphrases while holding the interest of your intended audience?
If you've already got two domains, why not have two versions of the important pages which are optimized for the "very different keywords/keyphrases?". After all, the fewer keyphrases you have to optimize each page for, the higher your chances of ranking high for those keyphrases, right?
Then, if you're worried about duplicate content, use your robots.txt file to disallow certain country's versions of the search engines from crawling the wrong version of the site.
It's just my opinion, but I though I'd throw it out there.
Best of Luck!
Posted 06 December 2006 - 08:52 AM
With regard to set up different versions of the site in the same language catering for local nuances I sincerely believe that can be very beneficial. It might not be specially relevant in terms of SEO but It will definitely help the quality of the traffic. Some people can be turned off by a site that they don't feel written for them. A major IT company we have as a client insisted on developing different search term researchs for its american site and british site, as well as french canadian site and french site.
When it comes down to different languages is of the utmost importance to be aware of the local peculiarities and not only trying to translate the english site. Users in different languages search in different ways so an apparently accurate translation can be useless in terms of business if those nuances are not taking into account.
An IT client we also have, with an audience very techie orientated, got a huge increase in its PPC campaign only by translating the landing pages properly into the languages targeted although the potential clients use english terminology.
English is the universal language but if someone want to target international markets, a raw translation without proper search term research and awareness of the local nuances won't help too much.
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