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How can I get search engines to crawl my site and see a localised view of my data?

I'm developing a website that will be translated into two languages: English and French. I'm just wondering what the best practices for such a site would be when it comes to SEO?

So far, the website has two root sub-directories, which means URLs look as follows:

  • http://www.example.com/en/home
  • http://www.example.com/fr/accueil

And in my <html> tag I specify the page language using the lang attribute (depending on which sub-directory we're in, i.e. <html lang="fr">).

Will this be enough for the site to rank and be indexed correctly in local versions of Google, i.e. English pages to achive the best ranking they can on google.co.uk and the French content to achieve the best rankings it can in google.fr?

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migrated from stackoverflow.com Dec 8 '11 at 22:08

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marked as duplicate by John Conde Dec 8 '11 at 23:17

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2 Answers

up vote 0 down vote accepted

Even if you set UTF-8 for all websites Google will understand the primary language of each page and will rank it better on its national engines. Nevertheless, I'drecommend to purchase national domains .FR, .DE if you seriously consider multilingual SEO. SE rank site.de higher than site.com/de

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That's good to know. Unfortunately, I'm not in control of the domain as it's for a client, and the client has procured and provided only the .com domain. –  Martin Bean Jul 4 '11 at 19:32
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Google just announced New markup for multilingual content. This should make it easier for multi-language sites to deal with translated versions of their website.

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