Going International with Marketplaces? Part 3 – Advice on keyword research in foreign languages

Question ‘’If I’m going into a new geography through an online marketplace then how can I best support this with international SEO for my own UK website?’’

Introduction. For UK based companies looking to grow internationally online marketplaces such as Newegg (US), Zalando (Germany) and Cdiscount (France) have established themselves as strong online sales channels that reduce barriers to entry and provide an established eco-system for UK companies to utilise with Pentagon at the forefront of this growth.

Listing on a new marketplace in a new country may be getting easier but this act in isolation, without any supporting activity, it’s not always a recipe for success especially for unknown brands. The following article will outline research undertaken by Pricesearcher and will provide actionable insights that you can take to improve performance on your own website in support of launching on a new international marketplace.

There is a huge amount of information online covering international SEO and domain strategy and there are many useful websites and blogs including (Search Engine Land, MOZ, Search Engine Journal, Search Engine Watch) to help companies do their research. There is so much information available that it’s hard to draw out the key considerations so we’ve split this article into 3 sections and will discuss the most important factors in each:

  • Web Domain Strategy – see blog post 1
  • International SEO considerations – see blog post 2
  • International Keyword research

International keyword research – ‘’70% of search on the internet is not in English’’

In the final part of the article keyword research for international SEO will be looked at. The vital consideration here is regarding machine translation and how dangerous it can be. You really need a native speaker who knows the slang, miss-spelling and colloquialisms with keywords. Sophisticated translation specialists like Translate Media use native speakers to translate product titles and descriptions with particular emphasis on the keywords that will improve the SEO of the product page and keyword research itself should be to an even higher level of understanding and research.

The following are tools and websites that can help understand your keywords in foreign languages:

  • Google Adwords Keywords Tool. By using the advanced option of Google’s Keyword Tool, it’s possible to select keywords by country and language. You enter an initial keyword, select a language and/or target countries, and Google will return a list of keyword ideas with the associated monthly volume for each which can then be used for content creation, ad-word spend, etc.


  • Trellians Keyword Discovery Tool. For an additional source of international keyword research, consider using Trellian’s Keyword Discovery tool. It includes data from many European countries and acts a good check of the Google AdWords tool to verify your research.


  • Google Insights for Search Use Google Insights for Search to explore trends in keyword search demand over time and identify market opportunity / trends over time. Google insights is obviously more valuable in the countries where they dominate the market share and so will be less relevant for China, Russia, S.Korea as mentioned previously.


  • Use a Proxy server to get results from a FR / DE IP address. Search engine results are often tailored to a user’s location which is determined by their IP address.  To understand how results differ from country to country, you can use a proxy server to search using an international IP address which can be very useful for competitive analysis. Try this site for a selection of international proxy servers: http://www.proxy4free.com.


  • SEMrush / MOZthe popular SEO tools can be used to research the keywords of your local competitors in the different international markets that are being considered.

About Ben Morgan

Head of Commercial for Pricesearcher

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