Identifying Traffic is Essential to SEO
So many write-ups and articles about language’s importance in every online business are written on the Web. Some writers say that a serious SEO practitioner should not focus only in English-speaking countries and users; some write how language can expand one’s business from one point to another farther point; some believe that understanding the breakdown of your traffic according to language spoken and used by the user is important to understand your audience and your target market; some SEO Resellers use their advantage of knowing more than one or two languages to reach their non-English speaking customers like Asians and Hispanics. But the bottom line of all these is, language in SEO is essential.
With this idea being stated, identifying our traffic, or to be more precise, our user’s language is important to complete our marketing analysis.
SEO Techniques to Enhance User’s Language
> Doing this through Google Analytics
Some use GEO location, but this only gives the web owner 80% chance of knowing his user’s language since Internet and computers are mobile today. For example, an American user can use his Mobile Internet anywhere in the world, and can view your site whether he is in Asia or Europe; thus, with this, it will just provide a weak data that is insufficient and vague if used in an extensive data analysis of one’s website.
There are only few analytic softwares that performs this language thing, and since Google is the most preferred search engine of most online users, using its own analytics is the ideal thing to do.
Yet before anything else, we should know the limitation of Google Analytics.
Google Analytics captures only the preferred language that visitors have configured on their computers. It doesn’t really track the user’s language, not even his preferred language in case he’s not proficient in English, but only the language setting and configuration of the user’s computer.
In simpler words, there is no exact way to know your traffic’s language. However, one thing can give you at least a 90% probability or idea or a guess of his preferred language. And this is through identifying hostnames.
> Doing it by Hostnames
If Hostnames tell which online service is used by a certain visitor, then looking at it would help us identify the user’s preferred language. Hostnames will identify to what language your page was translated to.
1. For Old Interface: Go to Visitors—Network Properties—and then Hostnames; For New: Visitors—Technology—Network—Hostnames
2. Create a user defined variable so that you can pull out the translation services used to translate your page. Create an Advance Filter where you extracted the data from the URL of the hostname; put that value in your user defined variable.
3. After a few days (because Google needs time to provide that data you needed), Log-in to Analytics and go to your user defined section; Go to Visitors—User Defined. Under the User Define Value tab, you will notice that the extracted translator services provide the translated language your visitor used to view your page. Just look at the last variable after the .com (dot com) and you’ll see the preferred language of your viewers. If it is in jp, then your page is being translated to the Japanese, kr, for Korean, mx for Mexico and so on.
If you want to go beyond language, there are other data on that page alone to look on so that you would identify the behaviour of that searched user. As usual, knowing the average time of their visit, or how many times they land on your site, the exact page they viewed, and even bounce rate is available.
The SEO Value of User’s Language
How will this thing (knowing the language of my visitors/traffic) help my business?
I’ve been reading comments and write ups on the Web and I’ve seen people who still take ‘language’ for granted. They say that knowing a visitor’s language or preferred language has nothing to do with expansion or growing.
Actually, the analogy is simple. If your services are limited only to Americans and to people who are living in your country then the large percentage of people who visit your site from other countries is automatically an income/opportunity loss for your trade. Knowing the origin of your traffic will help you determine a new target market for your business.