International SEO: How to Optimize Your Website for Other Countries?

Search engine optimization is an inbound marketing strategy that encourages usage of effective keyword strategy to augment the content integrity. This is done to ensure that search engines recognize its presence of the website on its SERP.

SEO is an organic marketing tactic for websites and blogs, without any paid promotions. However, it is still directly related to the ranking of any website on search engines, much more than PPC.

Driving an organic audience with SEO ensures incredible efficacy. Bloggers looking to reach out with their niche globally to achieve a widespread viewership need to focus on international, or target the specific countries intended.

Off-page and On-page SEO

Formulating impactful content with the implementation of on and off-page SEO provides a broader spectrum towards achieving the goal. On-page SEO deals with content and optimisation strategy within the website, while off-page focuses on everything outside the native web pages. This combination helps to reach out to a massive target base.

About 75% of the content is built with off-page SEO and 25% is ascertained with on-page SEO. Take a look here to get an idea about the growing searches taken up by the total population.


What is an international SEO?

International SEO is an optimization strategy stimulating global market penetration and expanding the scope of the blog widely by inducing content of global significance and relevance. It implies building content in proximity to global optimization in a manner that search engines identify its brand and performance in the marketplace.

It generates traffic from overseas countries from the target audience with geo-targeting, HreFlang Tag, and Domain or URL structuring.

Benefits of International SEO

  • SEO produces a vast source of traffic and is the best marketing strategy
  • Broadens business reach, performance, and outcome
  • Global brand recognition and awareness
  • Incredible progress in international SEO ROI
  • Organic traffic with 0 investments

Here is a statistical infographic presentation that shows how SEO should always be an essential strategy covering beyond 50% of the drive.

Broader benefits of website localization

In addition to the above benefits of international SEO, it’s worth noting that website localization is about more than just the SEO side of things. When you localize your website, you make the user experience feel more natural to the audience you’re reaching out to. A number of tasks fall under the umbrella of website localization. You may need to update your imagery, prices, health and safety information, shipping options and costs, payment system and more.

It is only by undertaking international SEO within this wider localization framework that you will truly maximize your website’s potential.

Steps involved in International SEO administration

Step 1 – Conducting qualitative research

The initial step in establishing a website is constant for a local or global market. Research is a fundamental step taken to study scope, market potential, and to pick target audience. To entertain a global website, it is recommended to stimulate research-based on languages that hold potential.

Step 2 – Picking a niche with international relevance

Determining to create global content imposes understanding of which niche fits best on a worldwide platform. It also assures that the niche would keep the engagement high.

Step 3 – Selecting your domain structure

There are 3 alternatives of domain structures to choose from in terms of multinational stretch.

  • Domain 1 – Country Code Top-Level Domain (ccTLD)

Country Code Top-Level Domain (ccTLD) is a replacement of (gTLD- Generic Top-level Domain) placed in a domain. ccTLD geolocates as an incredible domain with each country’s extension attached to it.

Generally, domains are positioned as an example.com, so the ‘com’ is replaced by a country extension for easy geolocation.


  • Google extends poor preferential credibility to ccTLD in correlation to TLDs oriented with the same domains.
  •  Several studies resulted in an outcome that the audience is insufficiently aware of ccTLD and holds credibility to the local site.


  • The fact that the audience can differentiate in TLD’s is significant. Study your target customers and build a domain with authority supported by the country-specific links.
  • If you have the expertise and reserves, ccTLD can make a great difference.
  • Domain 2 – A Country Subdirectory

A Country Subdirectory is a domain with geolocation positioned after gTLD, making it convenient to build for a beginner. However, the only trouble to deal with is regarding separate and additional subdirectory.

These domains function by converting example.com into example.com/country-of-your-choice/ to identify and target your audiences from that country. It also follows with domains ending with ‘org’, ‘com’, ‘net’, and such other extensions.

  • Domain 3 – A Country Subdomain

A Country Subdomain is yet another provision facilitating geolocations before gTLD. It is extremely simple to use with a minimal cost structure. The only difficulty faced with such domains is the inability to understand or misconception with differential URLs and domains.

In terms of a country subdomain, country extension should be available before ‘example.com’. A subdomain is suitable for languages with additional context.

Why domains and URLs should be the same?

A lot of developers face issues with malfunctioning URLs and domains. It becomes crucial to ensure that the URL and domain on your website are the same and there are no deficiencies 

SEO Meta Tags

Polylingual meta tags aid in identifying websites by using descriptive HTML tags, indicating the body and language undertaken.

hreflang Language Implications

This is embarked by Google to determine the languages and country in the form of a coded language. It is partly taken to ensure every individual is shown the correct website that they are looking forward to.

HreFlang is implemented in HTML linked pages forming a part of its heading and in non-HTML links as well.

hreflang Location Implications

hreflang transmits as a coded language to spot addresses and countries. They don’t just represent country codes but also comprise language codes as it forms part of the country as a whole.

Keywords analysis, research, and selection

Once a niche is considered, based on the language and country, keywords research is to be procured to ensure the content is optimized, and not just made available. Analyzing, assessing, and consistently adapting to an advanced approach makes the content stand out.

50% of searched queries are of at least 4 words. This shows how significant keywords stand. Here’s a statistical infographic indicating various components of Google’s ranking algorithm.

Learning Responses and Results

When it comes to SEO, it is essential to observe, record, and analyze the performance with every consequent blog. This creates a sense of awareness towards keywords that have high impacts and have resulted in higher ROI. Similarly, you should also research for keywords that lowered the market potential.

Summing up

Conducting surveys and measuring responses can be a great way to allocate the various locations based on demand. Different countries express different involvements, something that can be learned with their reactions and responses to surveys and other forms of research.

The bottomline is, international SEO is a more time-consuming process than local SEO, thanks to the extra optimization you have to ensure. However, once you get hold of an expert digital marketer, everything else will fall back in place.

Murtaza Ali

Murtaza Ali is a tech enthusiast and freelance writer with a passion for all things digital. With 5 years of experience in the tech industry, He has a deep understanding of the latest trends, innovations, and best practices. He loves sharing his knowledge and insights with others, and has written extensively on topics such as [Ai, cybersecurity, cloud computing, programming languages, etc. When he's not writing or tinkering with gadgets, he can be found exploring the great outdoors, practicing cricket, or experimenting with new recipes in the kitchen. He believes in the power of technology to improve people's lives and is excited to be part of an industry that is constantly pushing boundaries and breaking new ground.
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