Google Senior Webmaster Trends Analyst John Mueller said in a recent SEO snippets video that using non-English URLs for non-English websites is fine and that Google is able to crawl, index and rank them.
Can URLs use local non-English words?
For sites that target users outside of English-speaking regions, it’s sometimes unclear if they can really use their own language for URLs, and if so, what about non-English characters?
Google search uses URLs primarily as a way to address a piece of content. We use URLs to crawl a page, which is when Google bot goes to check the page and to use the pages content for our search results.
As long as URLs are valid and unique, that’s fine.
Regardless of what you place within your URLs, make it easy for folks to link to your pages. For example, avoid using spaces, commas and other special characters in the URL. They work for Google, but they make linking a little bit harder. Use dashes to separate words in your URLs. Sme prefer using underscores; that’s fine, too. Dashes are usually a little bit easier to recognize. And if your site is available in multiple languages, use the appropriate language in URLs for content in that language.
So to sum it up, yes, non-English words and URLs are fine, [and] we recommend using them for non-English websites.
You already know that your content marketing strategy needs to include online magazines. They offer many benefits to businesses, marketers and their customers including:
And building trust with customers and analytics.
Providing information and entertainment for customers.
Making a marketing appointment with them.
Offering the chance to tell your story your way.
But before you can gain any of these benefits your customers need to be able to find your online magazines. That’s where search engine optimization (SEO) comes in.
SEO optimizes web content so search engines can index it easily and people can find it faster. In the last couple of years Google – the main search engine that most people use and care about – has made a lot of changes to its search algorithms. With the advent of Panda, Penguin and Hummingbird old-style SEO tactics have gone out the window. Google’s updates have demoted:
Low quality content.
Keyword stuffed content.
Irrelevant links and links to bad neighborhoods.
That’s bad news if you’re into black hat SEO, but great news for people who are publishing quality content in online magazines. The new search algorithms favor:
High-quality, in-depth and long form content.
Content optimized for semantic search and voice search.
All of this has the aim of helping people find relevant, original content that they can use to answer their immediate questions. And it’s why you need to make sure your online magazines are search engine optimized so both Google and your potential readers can easily recognize the relevance of your online magazine content to the information they are searching for.
There are several areas to address to make this happen.
Sometimes when you do a Google search, you end up seeing the same site multiple times on the first page of the results, sometimes occupying the top 3 positions. Sometimes you see the same site many more times in the top 10, which is pretty common with some searches with Yelp results.
But is this considered a bug? Or is it just a good search result? John Mueller addressed this situation in the last Google Webmaster Office Hours.
In general, that is not necessarily a mistake. We do sometimes show the same site multiple times in the same search results page. That can be completely normal.
It’s something that depends quite a bit on the queries and the sites involved, but it’s not that we would look at that and say, “This is wrong, a site should only appear once in every search results page.” It can definitely happen that we show one site multiple times.
So the fact Google is showing the same site multiple times within the same search results is simply the algorithm working as intended, and is not a sign of a bug.
It was then brought up about local results, where seeing multiple results from the same site is something that can be seen regularly for some local keywords. But it definitely isn’t a local only issue, it happens for all types of queries.
So if you have ever looked at the results for a query, competitive or not, and wondered why one site can dominate the search results, it mainly comes down to the most relevant pages, and if that means multiple pages from the same site satisfy that query, then Google will show them.