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Why You Should Use ccTLD
If you are not familiar with the abbreviation ccTLD, it means Country Code Top Level Domain. For further explanation, country code refers to the assigned abbreviation of a country’s name used as part of the domain name just like .com or .gov is used. For example, the United States would be .us, Japan would be .jp, etc. Using this form of domain name improves a website’s reputation and branding capability, or it can allow you to designate the country of origin for your business. There are many very creative ways that such a domain name can be used.
CCTLDs can be used anytime, as long as the one you use is for your country of residence, and the language that the website is based on. While you can pick any domain you choose, Google does have some standards which they expect you to comply with.
- Google likes to see a ccTLD used for the particular country of website origin, and not used as a novelty domain just to promote a business.
- Make sure you check Wikipedia, Google or other source to assure you are choosing the correct ccTLD.
- Google seriously frowns on using ccTLDs inappropriately in order to manipulate, rankings or audience.
- Generic ccTLD’s like .IO (Indian Ocean) can be used by anyone, but are regularly reviewed by Google.
- Try to be relevant and not use ccTLDs in a manner contradictory to their country of origin.
- When the target audience of a specific website is residents of a particular country, then using that ccTLD is appropriate.
- Inappropriate use of ccTLDs can confuse customers and cause them to go elsewhere, if it is not relevant to the website.
- Google can label inappropriate use as search spam.
- Local governments are the legal governing bodies for ccTLD use. If you choose to use one, make yourself familiar with these regulations. Failure to do so can result in your online presence being taken down.
How to Use ccTLD Effectively?
When used in manner which is appropriate, there are some creative ways to use ccTLDs that can give you an advantage. Using ccTLDs offer credibility to your website, and improve the confidence of your users. This is in part due to the more official presentation that is made, as opposed to .com or other generic domain designations.
In many countries, consumers and web users are automatically attracted to their own country code and will choose it in searching above any others. It helps in branding, and can be used as part of your brand name, providing additional brand information in the web address. It allows you more options to show your creativity, and offers that bit of additional explanation to users of what you are all about.
International SEO Advantage of ccTLD
A ccTLD allows you to easily target users in specific countries. Each domain possesses its own authority and Google can take the IP address and know exactly what country is your target audience. The content should also be locally specific to your target audience for this method to provide maximum benefit. There are differing opinions on whether there are any negative effects on SEO, when using this method. Below are some of the factors that affect rankings.
- Hosting (minimal)
- Site Speed
- Relevant Content
- Currency Symbols (can impact conversion rates)
Here is the embeded version of PPT We’ve created on ccTLD
There are two main options for international SEO. One is to use the ccTLD for the target country, and the other is to use the locally specific language for the website, and change the language, depending on the location. Google does usually ranks TLD higher in the SERPS than the alternative multi-regional websites. It is more effective to build specific websites for each country you wish to target than to go with multi-regional. ccTLDs can offer many advantages when properly used, including, fewer duplicate content hits, branding advantage, the improvement of local search capability, allows in-language URLs, and geographical targeting by the search engines is much more effective. ccTLDs must be used and optimized fully to obtain the maximum SEO benefits.
I found really good points. Most two important reasons for implementing ccTLDs are traffic and conversions.
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