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Local Vs International SEO – Which Is Right For Your Business?


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Today, search engine optimization (SEO) is one of the most critical elements for any business developing its online presence. 

SEO doesn’t just determine how much traffic comes through your site, it also determines the monetization and profit of your site and business, respectively. 

With that said, this article will help you make that informed decision in choosing between local and international SEO for online business success. 

Local SEO 

Local SEO is a search engine optimization strategy aimed at generating awareness, leads, and sales for your business within a specific locality. This SEO type promotes businesses relevant to the searcher’s location at the time of the query. 

You implement this strategy by focusing on and targeting specific keywords and phrases that are unique to a particular region. This implementation will also include creating business listings on platforms such as Google Places and Google My Business. 

Once implemented, you can use the Map Pack rankings as the measure of success for this strategy. The Map Pack is also known as the local pack. It is a set of three businesses that appear at the very top of search results with their location already sourced. 

Your local marketing gurus will utilize tools such as customer reviews, business profiles, and NAP citations to ensure you rank in the local pack. NAP citations are businesses’ names, addresses, and phone numbers as they appear on websites, directories, and applications. 

The NAP citation is perhaps the most critical element of this SEO as they provide and ensure consistent placement on local search results. Google’s algorithm analyzes NAP citation consistency and frequency in determining how results rank. 

Adopting local SEO for your small or medium-sized business with a physical location and unique services within a focused area is recommended. Local SEO is most beneficial for businesses that operate within smaller markets. 

For instance, if you own a bakery in a particular region, local SEO will be best for growing your local customer base and building brand awareness. 

Choosing what SEO strategy to imbibe and invest in, whether local, international, or both, is thus crucial for your business. While both have their strengths and drawbacks, you will need to decide which of them is suitable for your business model and long-term goals. 

International SEO 

On the other hand, international SEO, also called global SEO, targets audiences on a worldwide scale by using global search engine result strategies. This SEO type is also referred to as normal SEO because it targets a general audience, that is, anyone using the search engine. 

Strategists will execute this SEO by channeling localized signals like hreflang tags to promote your content globally. Hreflang tags are a mark-up language that produces the same content in diverse languages and regions. 

You use hreflang tags for content with specific regional variations, specific language variations, or a hybrid of both. That means if you have a site whose content ranks in English, you can also make the site rank in french for french users.

Having a site page for every language or region will not promote international SEO success because you have to optimize the content of your website to suit each country and its users. 

You will have to tailor your content and keywords to suit each region you seek to reach. 

Google, the most popular search engine in the world, provides a benchmark for international SEO success. Their algorithm analyzes the user’s language settings and location in determining which URLs to suggest. 

As you may have guessed, international SEO suits businesses offering products and services to a worldwide customer base. This SEO is not for you if your business is limited to a particular region or location. 

It is suitable for expanding your product’s range and reach. However, beware that international SEO also faces greater competition as the battle for search result rankings becomes global.

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