The do’s and don’ts of multilingual SEO

Getting lost in translation is easier than you think

seo-dos-and-dontsYou spend years perfecting your product. You spend months building a website and getting the SEO perfect. So why, just when you’re ready to take on the world, would you go international without using professional translation services. Amazingly, large numbers of businesses do, It’s a common story, but one that rarely has a happy ending.

Getting it right is an art. So before you begin copying and pasting your web pages into a language you don’t understand, here are some of the most basic do’s and don’ts of multilingual SEO.

The Definitely Do’s

Do your research

Keywords even in the same language can be different, depending on country so do your research and speak to an expert about what trends they are seeing at that time. A good professional translation company will know those kinds of details inside out.

Stick to one language per page

Using different languages on the same page is not good practice. It’s confusing for readers, so understandably it’s confusing for search engines. Full site translations work better and show you mean business.

Do analyse your keywords

Keyword analysis should be the cornerstone of your strategy. You don’t want to waste time concentrating on phrases people aren’t searching for.

The Absolutely Don’ts

Don’t be literal with your translation
Even the very best translation tools cannot replicate the subtle human details of a native language. Multilingual SEO in the hands of a professional translation service will have the best of both worlds. Often time – and money – can be saved with sophisticated software, but the final touches are always done by hand.

Don’t forget about domains
Domains are easily overlooked as a great source of multilingual SEO. Localized domains have country codes that will help move up the rankings, it might be more expensive to develop but that depends entirely on how valuable that number one spot is to you.

Don’t rely on international links

Local links are essential if you want to bump yourself up the local SEO. Make sure you’re integrating local links into sites in those destinations in every way you can.


Launching a version of your site with multilingual SEO takes a lot of different skills, and there’s a lot to think about. But wherever there are words there are opportunities and pitfalls. Get the details right and you’ll fly up Google. Get them wrong and you’ll be invisible, or worse – damage your reputation with copy that was written by a machine or a non-native speaker. Professional translation services, like professional web design, pay for itself in the long run.