Aug 22 2018

How Different Countries Affect Keywords

Posted by Aj Aviado , ,

In business, there can be times that you will need to reach out far across your pond out on the other side of the banks. It would make sense that you try to go and sell your brand and products to more people outside of your own country. Hey, the more the merrier, right?

But like every single thing we’ve discussed here, everything in SEO has some level of art and science to it. This isn’t a hammer and nail type of operation, in SEO, we’re all brain surgeons here and one wrong reckless move will turn your campaign into a vegetable.

And not the delicious happy type that you put on your salad.
Lettuce Joke

Before we descend a little too early down the dark side, let’s go back to the topic at hand; Keyword Competition levels on different countries.

We know it sucks. You just want your business and the keywords connected with it to sell your stuff on country A and on country B, but you have to understand that there are several factors out there that makes that a bit difficult. And if you step back a bit, makes total sense.

One basic thing that is, understandably a bit under the radar (so everyone keeps missing it) is the fact that words all over the world adapt according to the culture they’re in. Different countries and regions use different versions of words and different words that can mean completely different in other countries to describe the things around them. Examples of this can be applied to the everyday cellular phone. On other countries, they call it “Handy”, on others it’s “Cell” and on other places, the completely-weird-but-totally-okay-we’re-not-saying-it’s-a-bad-thing-because-you-live-in-a-different-country, “GSM”.

That’s just how things are. Language is a magical thing. And people from different places are free to use it however they want. That is also one of the things that makes different culture beautiful.

One thing that can trigger these differences can also come from the current trends of a particular country.

There can be country specific trends that will never fly on other countries. And that’s totally natural since that’s also one of the effects of a country’s culture. If for example on country A, you bury the deceased, on other countries, it can be different. There are burial trends that on one hand might seem odd and gruesome, but that can be completely normal to them on that particular country.

On some countries (Country A), plastic surgery can be a normal trend. On these particular countries, health and medicine science can be so advanced and the whole industry is easily accessible and affordable. On other countries, plastic surgery can be very expensive, hence that trend might not exist on that particular place. (Country B)

All these factors can then affect a couple of things.

First is the results on your keyword planner. Although proven not to be completely accurate, it still gives you a more generalized view of your keywords. So yeah it’s still useful, calm down. It gives you an average of the total searches a keyword has per month. If you check a keyword and switch countries, you can see changes on the average results of a keyword.

Let’s check out “Flower Delivery” on the Keyword Planner:

Bangkok - Flower Delivery on Search Console

Bangkok = 140

Singapore - Flower Delivery on Search Console

Singapore = 1900

Indonesia - Flower Delivery on Search Console

Indonesia = 320

Other than that, there’s the competition levels on search as well. Mostly because of the trends of a particular culture or a particular country, competition levels of keywords will also vary.

There’s an added challenge there if in a particular country, there already is a company that uses a keyword you’re trying to rank on. Yeah in a way, you can steal that keyword term from that particular business, but it will still be better if you can utilize different terms and keywords so you can slip by the strong ones on a particular market.

Be ready to use other versions of your site that can change languages or ones that can change according to the country it’s opened on. It will be worth it.

It can be a normal assumption at this point to think if there are different algorithms working for these different countries. The answer is no. It’s all the same. But, because of the collective behavior of each countries, the response of the set algorithm will give out different results as well –always considering what the preferences of that particular crowd on a particular country. Everything will be different per country. Even what the semantically related searches will be.

So, the next time you try to jump off and try to sell on other countries, try to take time in examining the market you are targeting. All that cheesy planning quotes you see on Facebook and Twitter (and recently on Instagram) all have reasons for existing.


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