Multilingual SEO: How to Maximize Your ROI

When it comes to website translation, we understand that multilingual SEO is key to increasing your website traffic and taking your business global. But how do we make sure the money invested is working as hard as it possibly can? 

We take an in-depth look at how to build multilingual SEO effectively, and talk to our resident marketing advisor, Attiya Abdulghany – director of international digital marketing consultancy, Oliver + Sons, on her top tips to maximize ROI.

To start, your business will need to choose the right content management system (“CMS”), domain and website structure and complete relevant keyword research in the target language(s). This includes tailoring keywords that have high search volume and low organic competition, and translating key pages of your site, such as a selection of blog posts or other content that people will want to share spontaneously.

When creating your multilingual website, it is also a good time to reconsider your CMS. Some modern systems now allow you to create multiple websites in different languages with a shared database. This means:

  • If you develop or redesign one site, all your sites will be updated at the same time
  • Stock control is made possible across multiple websites
  • Hosting space is reduced, which might save costs

When selecting a domain, a generic domain (such as .com) that is not specific to a country is ideal, with different subdomains or subdirectories for every language that your website is in. This will assist search engines in finding your website in the language that the searcher is using.

When creating your multilingual website, the website structure should also be considered. The popular SEO specialists Semrush go over the pros and cons of different website structures in this detailed blog post.

Keyword research is key to a well-designed and successful commerce website, and essential when expanding your business globally. 

Researching your competitors will help determine whether or not you will have a decent ROI when translating your site. Plus, it will unveil your global customer’s wants and needs and will allow you to make an educated decision when measuring your ROI in multilingual SEO.

Get to know your target market, region by region, by looking at your global competitors. For example, in particular parts of the world, there may be slim to no competition, allowing you to lead the market. In other parts of the world, the market may be saturated, reducing your ROI.

Once you have all these key ingredients in place, how do we maximize your ROI to ensure you’re squeezing every cent from your investment. 

We spoke to Language Department’s Head of Marketing, Attiya Abdulghany, who shared with us her top tips.

  1. Go in with a plan. Work with a translation group that demonstrates strong SEO expertise. Multilingual SEO requires much more than just literal translations. They need to be competent in hybrid marketing — translation projects require the same process as SEO for the website’s original content/language. 
  2. Check your measurement platforms and establish benchmarks. This is critical. Before launching your multilingual site, be sure that your web analytics platforms are in place and ready. Now’s a great time to do a review of Google Analytics (or whatever your preferred platform is) and gather benchmark data about how organic search is contributing to your KPIs. Without these benchmarks, you won’t be able to measure the success of your multilingual project. 
  3. Give it time. SEO isn’t a quick fix. After the first version of your translated web property is live, review your metrics in regular intervals about 30-days apart for the first 6 months, and then in 60 day cycles.

Creating a multilingual SEO website without the necessary expertise can be challenging, costly, and time-consuming. Language Department provides premium multilingual SEO translation services to organizations worldwide. If you are ready to embark on your next global commerce project, contact us for your FREE quote to get you started on your journey.  Hungry to know more on multilingual SEO? Check out our roadmap to multilingual SEO here.