Make sure you know these options before you enter the Chinese market.
. STAY AWAY FROM POLITIC & SOCIAL PITFALLS
Recently, Marriott, the global chain hotel was listed Taiwan, Tibet, Hong Kong and Macau as separate countries in the survey. For this particular reason, China took down the site immediately.
If Baiduspider sees something the Chinese government disapproves, your website will not index at all.
What is going on here?
Pages with iFrames tend to have more than one URL, one for the page the iFrame is hosted on and another from the page it is pulling the content from. Baiduspider gets confused by this technique.
While Google has been able to index Flash since 2008, Baidu has yet to index one. You should thoroughly ignore a Flash technology. Flash now becomes obsolete and is not compatible with mobile devices like Apple iPhone.
3. TEST YOUR WEBSITE
Is your website accessible in China in real-time?
According to Baidu‘s Official SEO Guide, Baidu indexes foreign and overseas Chinese websites. Furthermore, these international websites treat as equal to Chinese-based sites hosted in China.
4. CHOOSE HTTPS (SSL) CERTIFICATE
In 2015 Baidu announced HTTPS is a significant ranking signal.
Buy SSL certificate from your hosting provider.
5. BAIDU verification
Many Chinese verification procedures (such as Baidu Trust) need an ICP license. This verification provides a badge for your site that displays in the search results.
The outcome the badge has on organic ranking is unknown. Many Chinese SEO experts do not treat it as a ranking factor. I do think it can improve search appearance and click-through rate.
To get relevant traffic from Baidu, you need to know your customers and their search queries well. Let me show you how!
6. Ecommerce Autocomplete Suggestions
The popular eCommerce platforms like Tmall, Taobao, and JD deliver exceptional customers experience. They know the type of words and phrases the Chinese search on their site.
As business, this results in better conversions. You should perform your product search here.
7. BUILD A CONTEST FOR KEYWORDS
When Chinese people submit new search queries to your contest, send them a prize as thank you.
Think about it...
You might get a hundred of new Chinese keywords here. Also, a new relationship is built upon, and you can contact them later for future promotions.
8. REVIEW YOUR CHINESE COMPETITORS' KEYWORDS
To view your competitors' keywords, look for these clues on their website:
H1 and H2 tags
Title and Schema Tags
9. REVIEW LOCATION-BASED KEYWORDS
These Baidu products can help you to discover more localized Chinese keywords.
↱ Baidu Zhishu (Baidu Index - Free tool)
↱ Baidu Tuiguang (PPC keywords & long-tail keywords)
↱ Baidu Feng Yun Bang (Popular keywords by location and category)
↱ Baidu Tieba (Largest online community)
↱ Baidu Nuomi (Chinese Groupon)
10. HOW TO PICK YOUR IDEAL KEYWORDS
Like Google SEO, your target Chinese keywords should be:
↱ Low-medium search volume
↱ Highly relevant to content and searcher‘s intent
↱ Keyword difficulty below 30
For more keyword ideas, read my Google SEO post!
User experience is a ranking factor in Baidu. Good design increases satisfactory user experience. Let‘s dive right in!
11. THINK LIKE CHINESE CUSTOMERS
In 2017, Chinese consumer's habit is different, and your website needs to reflect that. Both designs focus style and experience. That is the key to win their loyalty.
↱ Lots of Chinese sites feature a QR code
↱ Chinese websites tend to open a new page in a new tab, but not always
↱ Chinese accepts pop-up advertising to a degree
12. CHOOSE YOUR COLOR EMOTIONAL TRIGGERS
Many famous Chinese companies use color to convey their brand message.
How does this help to improve your SEO? Each color represents a meaning. This meaning can build significant trust between target customers and your products.
13. BUILD A STRONG SITE ARCHITECTURE
Site architecture is about improving how Chinese users find ways around your website. It is about delivering the best, most relevant content in front of them.
Baidu usually has problems crawling URLs with parameters.
This URL is terrible for Baidu SEO:
This URL is very SEO friendly:
14. CSS BASED NAVIGATION
Your navigation should code in HTML and CSS. This text navigation is super search engine friendly.
15. WHY A LOGO LINK MATTERS
The technique can help Chinese users to navigate easily to the homepage. This can provide a new starting point for those who are on the wrong page or want to explore other parts of the site.
In search engine optimization term, on-page optimization refers to factors that have an impact on your site rankings. Let me teach you how!
16. GET A PROFICIENT CHINESE TRANSLATOR
Our Chinese friends at HI-COM sent us a helpful translation tip.
You must hire a Chinese translator who familiarizes with local vocabulary and grammar. Even though they are Chinese, different parts of the country have different vocabularies. This method may affect your local tranlation.
To avoid embarrassing moments, you should get your best Chinese friends to read the finished translation one more time.
17. ADD UTF-8 ENCODING & HREFLANG
China has Simplified Chinese and Traditional Characters. Each region has a language reference, so it is crucial to choose the right UTF-8 encoding.
<meta http-equiv="Content-Type" content="text/html; charset=gb18030"/>
Hong Kong and Taiwan
<meta http-equiv="Content-Type" content="text/html; charset=big5"/>
Besides UTF-8 encoding, the Hreflang attribute is super necessary. Why? You tell Baidu to deliver your content to the right region.
<link rel="alternate" href="http://domain.com" hreflang=" zh-Hant-TW " />
Hong Kong and Macau
<link rel="alternate" href="http://domain.com" hreflang=" zh-Hant-HK " />
<link rel="alternate" href="http://domain.com" hreflang=" zh-Hans " />
18. DESIGN THE PERFECT CHINESE PAGES
Baidu recommends these creative tips to build your About and Contact page:
↱ Showcases the people behind the company to create trust
↱ Provide testimonials with an authentic voice
↱ Let customers/employee do the talking
↱ Provide a physical address and Chinese social media details
Always put the Link tag on the top of the page right after the head tag. This method produces a smooth load of your CSS file.
DO THIS:<!doctype html> <html lang=“en”>
<link src="href="https://www.shmdesign.com/css/style2.css" rel="stylesheet" />
<script src="js/jquery-1.10.0.min.js" defer> </script>
Why? Both external files load once and then cache in the browser.
20. CLEAN CODE MATTERS
Many Web Developers are careless because they are human. Some care about good coding practices; others do not.
Without any thoughts on optimizing the code, this will hurt your website performance.
↱ Go to W3C Validators.
↱ Type the URL and hit 'Check.'
21. HAVE A PROPER IMAGE OPTIMIZATION
The image optimization benefits everyone including Baidu:
↱ Add primary keyword & synonym together in the first six-word
↱ Add the secondary keyword to your image file name
↱ Contain at least 100 words around the image
↱ Write an honest description of ALT or Title attribute
↱ Reduce image size for best quality
↱ Add Caption tag as an extra bit of help to increase keyword prominence.
The image SEO can establish relevance for Baidu Image Search. Also, this trick is improving accessibility for Chinese audience.
22. PLACE PROMINENT CONTENT TO THE TOP
The Baidu SEO community reported Baidu Spider might not crawl everything. I suggest you place important content earlier in the body text. Here's my layout suggestion:
<div> Place Prominent Content here</div>
23. WRITE A PROPER TITLE TAG UNDER 70 CHARACTERS
Taking a note from Baidu‘s official SEO guideline, it suggests this format:
Give every webpage a unique Title.
<title>Site Name | Description of Services | Main Product</title>
24. WRITE 110 CHINESE CHARACTERS
Not only the Meta Description is a ranking factor, but it can impact the click-through-rate. Write a value proposition statement to get Chinese searchers to click your website.
<meta content="Write your own description here" name="description"></head>
Why is this tip important to your Chinese SEO?
Your users would see this Description on a search result.
25. USE OF META KEYWORD TAG
Place the first five prominence SEO key phrases. Don‘t go over 100 characters.
26. PROVIDE PHYSICAL ADDRESS TO EVERY PAGE
The physical address of your company can create customers confidence, stability, and credibility.
27. WRITE EMOTIONAL <h1> HEADLINES
I recommend you add a primary keyword to the H1 tag. This SEO tip can boost the relevances of your primary keyword. Better yet, write your headline in the form of the question. Next, you provide relevant content to support it.
Most Chinese are looking for the answer online. If Baidu thinks your headline and page content matches their search query you site will rank higher.
Use H2 and H3 tags to break your page copy into small paragraphs. Decidedly, this best practice can improve the experience for dwell time and readability.
28. WRITE A PROPER INTERNAL ANCHOR TEXT LINK
Baidu places much weight on keyword usage in the anchor text link. To get the most Baidu SEO benefits, create an internal link like this:
29. USE AN ABSOLUTE URL PATH
An absolute URL path is better for Baidu SEO optimization. Besides, when scraper steals your content, the link in the content remains unchanged. Who wins here? You.
URL Path Example:
How to protect your original content in China?
When publishing a post, you should get Baiduspider to fetch the URL of the post immediately after you go live. This way you tell Baidu that you are the original author of this article.
30. ADD CANONICAL URL TAG
In Feb 2013, Baidu preferred quality original pages only. If you have two duplicate pages, add the canonical attribute to your web pages:
Please notice the above examples are (HTTP) and (HTTPS). These are two different URLs. Inside the Canonical tag, you tell Baiduspider that this is your preferred URL.
<link href="https://example.com/china-seo/" rel="canonical">
31. NAME YOUR FILE AND SUBFOLDER WITH KEYWORDS
Good naming convention improves keyword relevance and frequency.
Use Chinese and PinYin for your subfolder and file names.
32. ADD CHINESE SOCIAL SHARING BUTTONS
Ask the Chinese users to share your page. Why? This social media trick can help to boost your keyword relevance and ranking.
Add sharing script before the body tag:
↱ Like button
↱ Baidu Cang (bookmark)
33. Submit sitemap to Chinese search engines
You should submit your site to four webmaster accounts. This can significantly improve your Chinese website for that search engine.
↱ Sign up Baidu Webmaster account
↱ Sign up Sogou Webmaster account
↱ Sign up 360 Webmaster account
↱ Sign up Shenma Webmaster account
To get Baiduspider to crawl your site frequently, you need to enable an ETag on the server.
34. ADD BAIDU Tongji (Analytics)
This tool includes stats, heat maps, site speed test and Baidu index checker.
35. IE 9 STILL USE IN CHINA
According to StatCounter, Chrome led desktop browser market in China with 52.62%, followed by Internet Explorer with only 23.13%.
Why is this tip important to your Chinese SEO?
Most web developers build your site with the latest web technology like CSS 3. It looks perfect on your current browser. What you do not know, this most recent CSS technology is not compatible with the oldest browsers.
You must ensure your web developer to check the old browsers for your business website. If you forget this step, you will lose many potential customers from Internet Explorer 9.
Site speed is a crucial search ranking factor in Baidu Chinese search engine.
36. HOW FAST IS YOUR WEBSITE?
Chinese searchers prefer a fast loading website. To feed this demand, Baidu rewards any fast loading website a boost in site ranking.
I use these four tools to test my current SEO work:
↱ Qihoo Speed Test
↱ 17ce Speed Test
↱ GEO Peeker
↱ Webkaka Speed Test
37. how to make your website insanely fast
Comments, white space, and un-optimized code can take up unnecessary load time. This would create a big file size, so you must compress your files and images when possible.
↱ Minfy HTML
↱ Minify CSS
↱ Optimize and Compress Your Images
↱ Add Snippets To .HTAccess File
Your file size will reduce as much as 25-50%.
38. BAIDU MOBILE INSTANT PAGE (MIP)
On March 7, 2017, Baidu launches Mobile Instant Pages.
↱ Validator tool
↱ Submission tool
Baidu MIP is the latest web development, and it is an exciting time to build a great website with MIP.
39. GET CONTENT DELIVERY NETWORK (CDN)
So how do you ensure you do not get penalized for a slow loading website?
Get China CDN; this can boost your page speed tremendously.
40. DO NOT LINK TO WESTERN SOCIAL MEDIA SITES
Links to blocked sites such as Facebook, Twitter, Google, YouTube or NY Time will appear broken. These broken links slow down your website. Remove them at once.
41. BUY DEDICATED SERVER HOSTING
Buy a reliable, dedicated web hosting with 99.5% uptime. What's nice about it? You do not share your server with other sites.
This hosting guarantees you do not get in trouble with the Chinese authority.
Make sure Baidu recognize your Chinese pages so that it can rank accordingly. Let‘s learn some proper mobile optimization techniques now.
42. INSTALL MOBILE META TAG
By adding this tag to your web page, you tell Baidu that your site is mobile design:
<meta name=“applicable-device” content=“pc,mobile”>
43. Make Your Phone Number As The Auto-Detect
Here's the code:
44. Six TIPS FOR DESIGNING MOBILE-FRIENDLY SITES
When designing your mobile pages, apply these best design practices:
↱ No horizontal scroll
↱ No zoom need to view content
↱ No annoying interstitials, pop-up ads
↱ Make big readable text to 16px
↱ Use mobile navigation and breadcrumbs when possible
↱ Use short form
45. FOR MOBILE WEBSITES, SIZE MATTERS
Have well-spaced of target links/icons to avoid selection errors
46. HOW TO IMPROVE YOUR LOCAL SEO VISIBILITY?
Add this tag to your Chinese website. If you live in Beijing, follow this example.
<meta name=“location” content=“province=北京;city=北京;coord=116.306522891,40.0555055968”>
Replace your province, city and GEO location coordination.
It will rank your website higher in SERPs where searchers‘ location matches with your geolocation.
Source: Dragon Metrics
When building brand authority, share your opinions, experience, and skills.
47. BAIDU ZHIADO
Baidu Zhidao (百度知道) is the world‘s most extensive Interactive Q & A platform in China.
If the questions have not been asked yet, you can post the question to Zhidao. Or, if you find questions that have already been answered, feel free to provide your thorough insight and include a link to your site.
This Baidu platform where you can play a big role to influence Chinese consumer to your product.
To be a Baidu Zhidao Expert, you must have a Chinese identity card ID to sign up.
To register for your company, you can call Baidu Zhiado directly at 010-59924485/8632.
48. BAIDU Qiye BAIKE
Baidu Qiye Baike(百度百科) is the authoritative source of unbiased information.
Baidu places the Wiki page near the top of the search result, much higher than an organic listing. This Chinese version of Wikipedia can bring more business exposures to your brand.
To claim the Baike page for your corporation, you must have an ICP license to qualify.
49. Baidu Wenku
Baidu Wenku (百度文库) is a free platform that allows users to share all types of documents and files.
Do not forget to add the link back to your website. These links are authoritative and high quality.
How can you use Weibo for your business?
↱ Improve brand recognition and brand loyalty for your company
↱ Gain valuable insights from potential clients
↱ Increase inquiries and sales, both online and offline
↱ Improve customer service and social engagement
Watching videos now ranks fourth for online activities among Chinese users.
Youku/Tudou — 288.6 million monthly active users
Tencent Video — 338.1 million monthly active users
iQiyi — 368.9 million monthly active users
Allow users to share short video clips or live stream.
Allow users shoot, edit, and share 10-second videos.
Allow users make perfect 13-second short videos!
Live streaming app
50% of China’s online population has used live streaming at least once.
Let users earn through activities such as karaoke or creating tutorial videos.
Also referred to by users as 'Yi,' is a Chinese live video-streaming app that is similar in appearance to Periscope.
52. WECHAT SEO
Weixin (微信) is known as WeChat in North America. It has 800+ million users in China.
As of June 6, 2017, people can search news, entertainment, how-to and other popular posts on WeChat.
Sogou Weixin and WeChat search have a unique algorithm. There are four factors to rank your article:
Verify your Wechat account.
Your article must match the searcher's query.
Encourage your followers to comment, repost and like.
My friend Sarah Yam from Red Digital has written a case study on Mini WeChat. I recommend you read her post.
Chinese New Year Campaign: Coming of WeChat Mini Program case studies.
In 2015, Baidu announced they would ignore all links except those from trusted, high-quality websites.
53. Link Building 101
Let’s say that you have a restaurant site and you get an inbound link from a regular directory. Baidu will not see that website link as relevant to the subject of your site.
Yet,you should get links from a website that’s related to restaurant reviews like SCMP's Good Eating or Dianping. This link is very useful to your potential users and can increase your site ranking.
54. Try Paid Advertising on Toutiao
Toutiao is a Chinese news curation platform established in 2012. It attracts 450 million Chinese users who like to read the news.
Your ad will blend with the news content. This type of paid advertising with a link going back to your site is the safe and no penalty.
Most Baidu SEO posts are incomplete,the author provided very general tips.
Like Google, Baidu has one mission: they want to provide the best answer to people’s query. By providing the best solution, your site must help the searcher to complete his/her goal on your site.
Baidu wants to get it right every time. If the searcher leaves your site immediately, your site ranking will downgrade. Did you know that?
My post is here to help you so you can enter the Chinese market successfully.
Hope this article helps you understand Baidu SEO optimization better. Drop me a message if you have any thoughts or question!
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