Now that you have chosen your architecture, it's time to translate and make sure the content in each language gets properly indexed!
Let's look at the process step by step.
Follow On-Page Best Practices
They are the same as for your main pages. However, there is one technical aspect that you must remember for a multilingual website: the hreflang tag.
<link rel = "alternate" hreflang = "en" href = "https://your-site.com/en/" />
rel="alternate" hreflang="x" helps Google identify which URLs to give to your visitors based on their language and location settings.
This tag is indispensable when you have several versions of the same content in different languages.
According to Google, there are three places you can specify language information:
As an HTML tag in the <head> </ head> section of your page.
In your sitemap.
As an HTTP header.
I suggest you place the tags directly on your page, because it is easier to maintain.
Only use one of the three methods!
Here are tags for alternate homepages for the SNCF website:
<link rel="alternate" hreflang="x-default" href="https://your-site.com/">
These tags specify variants for other languages, namely English and German.
<link rel="alternate" hreflang="de" href="https://www.sncf.com/de/home"> <link rel="alternate" hreflang="en" href="https://www.sncf.com/en/home">
These tags indicate page variants in other languages (German and English).
Other Language Signals
You can also specify the language of the page in your HTML tag as an attribute:
<html lang="en-us"> ... </html>
Keyword Searches by Language
This may seem obvious, but don’t translate your website word for word.
Even if you have a good translation, you may have to change the content to meet user expectations.
Here are the steps to take for translating each page:
Determine the subject of the page, i.e., the main keyword and secondary keywords.
Using a keyword search tool, such as Google's Keyword Planner or KWFinder, determine if these topics have good SEO potential, and if there are other variations.
If the keywords exist in the new language, you can translate the text using them.
If not, look for an appropriate alternative. For example, by studying your competitors!
Spread Your New Content
Once you've translated your site, spread the word about your new content. This will help you get your first visitors in the translated language!
You can do this through social media, advertising, and email campaigns.
It also lets Google know that your website is active.
Similarly, you must acquire backlinks for the new languages on your site.
Optimize the pages on your website to send the right location signals to Google.
Do a keyword search before you start translating.
Spread your content to boost your search results ranking.
A Final Word
Congratulations! 💪 You’ve almost completed the course. Just take the quiz on the next page and you're done!
I hope you found the course helpful, and that you have begun to put what you learned into practice.
You should now be able to how to:
Improve your site by analyzing Google's behavior.
Make your website faster.
Optimize the SEO of a multilingual site.
If you want more information or have any questions, contact me via the OpenClassrooms chat application or on LinkedIn.
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