Businesses that sell products or services worldwide want their websites to operate in all of their target markets. That’s where they’ll need international SEO to build a name for themselves. International SEO is thought to be fairly difficult, and here is where the majority of firms fall short.

Despite popular belief, international SEO may be beneficial to small businesses by expanding their market and generating a high return on investment. As a result, let’s learn more about international SEO and many of its guiding principles.

What is International Search Engine Optimization (SEO)?

International SEO is more than just releasing sites with new content and implementing hreflang. Geotargeting is the most important aspect of international SEO. This involves regionally structuring and optimizing your website. Allowing search engines to recognize the nations and languages spoken by each user in a certain place.

The URL structure for foreign websites is a good example of international SEO best practices. The fundamental idea is that you need a precise domain for your international SEO needs. When picking a web domain for international SEO, there are very few factors to keep in mind. Country-code top-level domain (ccTLD) registrations are appropriate for a certain place.

For instance, and

To geo-target certain nations, top-level domains (TLDs) are utilized. Subdomains and subdirectories of ccTLD domains can also be used to geo-target certain nations.

For example, is a subdomain. It employs a generic top-level domain (TLD) with a part of the world suffix.

For example, and are subdirectories.

If you want to target areas where many languages are spoken, you’ll need a structure that contains both country and languages subdomains.

Tags for HrefLang

HrefLang was created for multilingual website owners who wanted search engines to deliver visitors relevant material in their own language. Sites with comparable content in several languages profit from this. HrefLang Tags are applied to a website that allows cross-reference pages with comparable information for various audiences.

As an example — (I am the American version, please index me in the US)

As an example — (I am the Arabic version and would only like to be operated and served in the UAE).

The hreflang property may be used in three different ways:

  • HTML 
  • Sitemaps 
  • HTTP headers

The Default Tag for X

When the language or locale tag does not meet any of the available options and no other page is more suited, the default tag is a default version of the site that you may select to serve users. There are two versions of the website: one for the United Kingdom and one for the United States. As a result, if someone from Australia searches for comparable phrases, you’d X Default them to the desired version.

Language Tags in Meta Content

The dialect in which the HTML content is produced is indicated by this element, which might also contain the nation. This metadata informs search engines about the page’s intended audience.

As an example- <meta http-equiv=”content-language” content=”en-us”>

Keyword research on a global scale

It’s important to remember that exact translations aren’t always accurate or useful. Examine the terms used by your competitors in those countries. You may utilize the SEMRush tool, which is useful for estimating keyword search traffic, competition ranks, and AdWords advertising for the target nation.


Install Google Analytics as well as Google Search Console with each property to track your SEO progress. Both of these techniques can aid in the detection of potential technical or indexing difficulties.

Creating International Connections

Link building is especially important for websites with ccTLDs as well as subdomains since you’ll need links for them.

  • Citation in the locality
  • Look for websites that are related to your market and include a list of your rivals. Examine the kind of material that individuals are producing for outreach to see if you can see any possible placements. This will assist you in comprehending the cultural aspects of your target market.
  • Create material that is appropriate for the intended user’s language and culture. Create visually appealing and search engine optimized material for your audience regarding your offerings, long-tail search results, business topics that may be of appeal to them, and other topics that should earn them links.


What’s the difference between ordinary SEO services and international SEO services?

One of the first stages in international SEO is to localize website content. Your worldwide page should not be a carbon copy of the website for your local nation. Optimizing your website for a certain country’s local audience will improve the website’s overall user experience. Otherwise, versions of your website may fight for rankings or may not be shown at all if their overall performance is poor. Each country should take a different strategy for international SEO.

To give an example, if a distinct site is built for Mexico, away is to create for India should not rank in the Mexican SERP. When you use canonical or hreflang tags incorrectly, search engines will either ignore your site or index it twice.


Google’s ranking criteria have changed over time. The displayed ranks are dependent on the context of the request, not the form of Google the search engine is using. Previously,,, and displayed numerous search results for comparable terms. Unless you check in three separate nations, you may find the relationship in all three Google searches.

Keep learning

  • Continue your education with The Guide to International SEO – Are you new to international SEO?
  • Aleyda Solis guides you through all you need to know about international SEO in The International SEO Checklist.
  • Google Technical Support for International SEO
  • Top 15 International SEO Myths – Kaitlyn tells the narrative of how international SEO has developed over time and delves into what to worry about and what not to worry about.

Put your abilities to use

  • Track words and rating pages for your domain plus three rivals in four separate international SERPs if you have an organized effort for your business.
  • MozBar – When doing competitor research on a page of search engines, you may receive real-time ranking information for your keyword searches and examine the results for the selected target region using MozBar.
  • Overseas SEO ROI Calculator – Use this calculator to see if an international SEO campaign would yield a decent return for your business right now.