International SEO is the branch of SEO
devoted to optimizing websites in order for search engines to recognize which
country and language your website is targeting. Here are four examples of
major brands getting international SEO wrong. Number one: Target.com misses the
bullseye in Mexico. Target.com ships to three countries: the US, Canada and
Mexico. However there’s no Spanish version of the website, with only a small
fraction – 11,6% of Mexicans speaking English that’s really
surprising. This means that Target provides a really
poor user experience for nine out of ten Mexicans.
Target’s should at least translate strategic areas of their website if they
care about Mexican customers but for now they’re barely visible in Google search
results in Mexico. Two: Marks & Spencer gets low marks in Germany. Marks and
Spencer is a popular online retailer with over 10 billion pounds of revenue
in 2017 alone, and have a dedicated version of its website for German users.
However people from Germany typing “Marks Spencer” in Google, receive the English
version. Three – Amazon losing money? Amazon suffers from similar issues users
searching from the United Kingdom or Canada commonly get results from the
American version of Amazon. What do users do in such a case? Well, we created a poll
to find out. While 45% will scroll to find the UK version and astonishing 39%
will click the ad, which translates for Amazon losing a lot of money. Four: KFC is
not so finger licking good when it comes to spanish-speaking customer. hreflang tags are a strong hint for Google on which language version to show in Google
search results. Everything points to KFC.com having some issues with the
language targeting due to missing hreflang tags, their United States branch
has their website in two languages English and Spanish
but when spanish-speaking people type the query KFC in Google they only get
the English version. Things get weirder when a Spanish user searches for KFC in
San Jose California for instance they get KFC from other countries.
International SEO is a vital component for businesses looking to reach as many
markets as possible online, and if major brands like Amazon and KFC can’t get it
right 100%, how confident are you with your brand?