What is SEO Translation?
SEO Translation involves translating a text from one language to another and then adjusting that text to include the correct keywords in the translated document, along with tags, headings and other SEO requirements.
The resulting text (in the target language) should be reader-friendly in SEO terms which will help the webpage appear higher up in search engine results and attract more visitors.
Attracting more traffic can help to generate more leads, and this method of generating written content in a different language, and then optimizing that content in order to get the best results, can really help to boost sales.
When Should You Use SEO Translation?
SEO translation should be used when translating texts that are going to be published on a website. These include website copy, webpages, blogposts, articles and so on.
There may be exceptions of course. If an official report is to be published, then it may be appropriate to translate it in the traditional manner and post it to the web, without any adjustment for SEO. The reason for this is that SEO translation normally involves “tweaking” the translated text and therefore it may not be appropriate in all situations.
How Should You Carry Out SEO Translation?
What considerations need to be taken into account? What are the differences when compared with “normal” translation?
Well, here are a few points to keep in mind:
1. Plan The Workflow
Before getting started, it is important to plan the SEO translation workflow.
The most common approach is to translate the document in the usual manner first, and then make the SEO adjustments set out below. This is probably the easiest way of doing things (rather than trying to translate and adjust the keywords at the same time, for example), and also means the the work can be divided between different people if required – the text can be translated first, and then passed to an SEO translator or SEO editor for optimization.
A key part of the process is to identify whether you are translating a document that has already been posted on the web (and optimized for the same) or not. If the text has been posted correctly, then it is likely that it will include appropriate headings, tags, and other SEO requirements (see below) that simply need translating. If the text has not been posted, then these features may well need to be created.
2. Include Headings
When translating texts and optimizing for SEO, the text should be broken up into sections using the correct headings. This makes the text easier to read, helps those who only scan the text rather than reading the whole thing, and improves SEO.
The headings should be marked with the correct tags. The title should normally have an h1 tag, and h2 and h3 tags can be used for subheadings.
3. Sentence Length
Multiple long sentences are not ideal for SEO purposes. Sentences should, in general, be reasonably short and to the point. In general, it is important to break up your ideas so that they can be clearly understood. Also, it helps to use clear and not over-complicated language.
4. Work Directly in WordPress
It is often easier to work directly in a CMS such a WordPress.
WordPress is very easy to use and the CMS that we recommend.
The advantage of working directly in WordPress (rather than in WORD and then copying the text across) is that it is usually easier to format the post or article directly in WordPress. Copying the post from WORD can sometimes result in problems correctly the format.
5. Translate Tags
It’s not just about translating the text.
If your article is going to be effective in SEO terms then you should also be translating tags and meta decriptions.
For example, when you upload an image to a blogpost, you have the option of adding a title tag and an alt tag to the image. These tags can help in SEO terms and they will help your images to appear in Google image searches.
Therefore, when you are translating an article, it makes sense to translate these tags as well, as all of these adjustments are going to help SEO in the translated language and help you to attract more traffic.
The meta description is also very relevant and, again, will help SEO in the translated (target) language.
6. Use the Yoast SEO plugin
The Yoast SEO plugin for WordPress helps you to manage many of these factors really easily – you don’t need to be an SEO expert as the plugin will guide you through all of key areas.
For example, it measures keyword density, assesses readability and tells you if your sentences are too long. A really amazing tool.
7. Analyse and Incorporate Keywords
One of the key tasks in SEO translation is to include the correct keywords.
The most common way to approach this task is to identify the target keywords in the original document, together with their frequency. Then the text is translated normally and, once completed, the translated keywords may need to be adjusted.
The translation of the keyword may not be the right keyword to use – sometimes translating the keyword just doesn’t work and a new, equivalent keyword needs to be identified. This is due to a couple of factors. First of all, a literal translation might sound strange, and secondly the translated keyword might not be a term that is searched for frequently.
In order to choose the right keywords in the translated document, you can use a keyword tool such as Google’s Keyword Planner. Such tools allow you to identify the number of searches for each keyword and therefore decide which keywords you should be targeting in the translated text.
Another important point is the keyword density. If the original text has been optimized for SEO, then you can simply translate the document and find equivalent keywords. For example, let’s say that a certain keyword appears with a keyword density fo 2% (the proportion of times that a keyword appears is known as the keyword density) in the original text, then it would make sense to include the same keyword density in the translated text.
If, however, you are translating a document for SEO purposes, but the original text has not been optimized, then a bit more work might be needed. Not only will you need to identify the keywords, you will also need to include each keyword an appropriate number of times – in other words, establish the correct keyword density.
The keyword density should not be too high because Google can penalize the text – this is known as keyword stuffing and is when a writer tries to achieve better search engine results by including the keyword many times. But, include the keyword too many times doesn’t look natural, alerts Google, and can be detrimental to search engine results. So, too many instances is not a good idea.
On the other hand, the keyword density should not be too low as this will not be effective in terms of SEO – your article will not show up for particular searches if it does not include specific keywords a certain number of times.
The current maximum recommended keyword density is around 2.5%. In other words, the keyword should appear a maximum of 2.5 times per every 100 words.
The Yoast plugin can help with this as it measures keyword density automatically and highlights if you are over the recommended amount.
8. Write Natural Texts
When performing SEO translation, it is important to find a balance between writing a text that is optimized, and writing a text that is natural.
The interesting thing is that search engines and humans value texts in different ways. A text that is perfectly optimized for SEO might sound strange to a human reader, and could lead to a higher bounce rate on the page. Similary, a text that reads incredibly well might not have the SEO ingredients required to appear high up in the search engines.
It’s about finding a balance. The text should read well while taking into account the SEO requirements, and this is where SEO translators come in as they are able to find an appropriate combination.
9. Localize Content
SEO translation often needs to be combined with localization. Localization is a different skill that involves adapting the text to local customs and culture. For example, a text in one language might talk about a famous personality, but that same personality might not be very well know in another country – in such a case it might make sense to use a different person as an example. Currencies may also need to be changed and there may be other cultural considerations – all of these are examples of localization.
10. Translate Different Media
Long gone are the days when content is made up exclusively of text. Nowadays, multimedia content is very common – for example a blogpost may include embedded videos, images and audio. Ideally, all of these different media types should be translated and optimized for SEO. For example, subtitles can be added to video and transcripts can be included as part of the post in order to help with optimization.
SEO Translation Conclusions
SEO translation is clearly different to “normal” translation and, if done correctly, can really help to increase web traffic, improve engagement in different markets, and increase brand awareness and sales in different countries.
For further information and guidance on SEO translation, please get in touch with the 100 Percent Languages Team here. We look forward to helping you!
SEO translation is where the text is translated while, at the same time, ensuring that the translated text has the optimum SEO characteristics. This means taking into account factors such as:
- Titles (SEO translation requires more frequent use of titles)
- Appropriate, licensed images
- Title and Alt Tags
- Meta tags
- An Effective Main Title for SEO purposes
Why is SEO Translation Important?
SEO translation is important because it can really help your translated texts to achieve better results in the form of more traffic and, ultimately, greater interaction with potential clients and higher sales.
What does 100 Percent Languages have to offer?
We work with a global team of expert translators, SEO experts and professional who have the required experience in both disciplines.
This means we are able to deliver high-quality SEO translations to help your company or brand open new markets and attract a worldwide audience.
In today’s world, it’s not enough to simply translate texts from one language to another, particularly if those texts are going to end up online, and should serve to attract potential clients and increase engagement.
This is where 100 Percent Languages can really help. We are expert translators and we are also tech experts, so that we can ensure that your texts are effective in different languages, helping you to get the results your require.
Would you like to find out more about how SEO translation can help your business?
Set up a free, no-obligation call, and we’ll be happy to discuss your specific needs.