Having website information clearly displayed in your own language is of great importance to users. It is for this reason that properly localised sites definitely have an advantage with users. Both the user’s location and/or the user’s language are taken into account when Google indicates best possible search results.
A multi regional website – one that targets users in various regions is referred to as multilingual – often targeting both multiple regions and in multiple languages. Working with an increased number of URLs requires an appropriate infrastructure to support your website. When planning sites for multiple regions (usually countries), don’t forget to research legal or administrative requirements that might come into play first. These requirements may determine how you proceed, for instance whether or not you would be eligible to use a country-specific domain name.
All websites begin with domain names and for Google these fall into two catagories:
- ccTLDs (cross-country top level domain names), which are tied to a specific country.
- gTLDs (generic top level domain names): Not tied to a specific country (.com, .net, .org etc).
When it comes to URL structures, it is ideal to opt for a URL structure that makes it possible to divide parts of your website up for geotargeting. It is important to ensure that links are shown on all pages for users to choose the region and language they wish to search under. Providing unique content for different users in different countries is strongly recommended too.