How is International SEO Different from Standard SEO?

How is International SEO Different from Standard SEO?

If you are a business owner you want your website to be as high as possible in the search results. So this is where SEO or Search Engine Optimization comes into play. To put it simply: SEO is essentially a set of activities aimed at 1 thing: making sure your website gets maximum visibility in organic search for all the relevant keywords.

Imagine this. You successfully implemented all of the SEO techniques and your business is growing. At some point you decide that time is ripe for expanding overseas. So you create different version of your website focused specifically on the foreign country. But here is the problem: whenever American customers look you up they keep on getting UK version of your website. And this is where you will use International SEO. It can be described as:

International SEO is the process of setting up your website and promoting it in the international environment (typically several markets at once) in order to gain visibility in different search engines or different country versions of the same search engine.

International SEO mainly consists of 3 levels:

  • Geo-targeting
  • Marketing localization
  • SEO


Obviously users are interested in the search results that make geographical sense to them. Say you live in Austria and browsing the web for a new car but in the search results you keep on getting pages that link to the German dealerships. In some cases results can be completely off. Like when American customers are shown UK-related content. This means incorrect currency, measurement units and even language (needless to say that distance will be slightly bigger that between Austria and Germany too). So geo-targeting means delivering content based on the user’s geographic  location. It is one of the cornerstones of the International SEO because properly made geo-targeting ensures that different versions of your website won’t be mixed up.

Marketing localization (internationalization)

You have international website up and running. The question is: how to adjust content for different countries? First thing that comes to mind is to localize. It means to tailor content with regards to the cultural specifics and consumer behavior. It is certainly difficult as a lot of information should be taken into account. But sometimes it is the only way to market a product. Remember that famous scene in Pulp Fiction about Quarter Pounder? Mcdonald’s had to rename it to the Royal Cheese in France since they use metric system. Another way to treat content would be to internationalize it or create a content that can be understandable by the worldwide audience. However, there are cases when simple translation will do the job.


SEO techniques work pretty much the same on international level. However, this time you can’t use content in one language for every country. So you will have to decide how to approach it. At the end of the day it mostly depends on the type of product you offer and how do you view brand in the international environment.

Expanding your brand overseas is no easy task for sure. In these matters it is always good to work with people who know how to approach international market. Here at GFluence we help various businesses with executing their international SEO strategy to its fullest potential. Check full spectrum of services that we can provide for your brand.

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Artur Kornienko

Artur Kornienko

If you have an idea, he will put that in words and spread it.

Entries by Artur Kornienko