GPWA Times Magazine - Issue 10 - Sept 2009

54 GPWA Times :: Go global — Themarkets are soft The waters are getting rough in the gaming industry and as always they’re full of sharks andwhales.What can you possibly do as an affiliate to competewith these guys? ByGaryBeal With the big bankrolls behind corporate SEO and now PPC, the landscape is changing more rapidly than ever. The question is, what can you do to stay competitive in this market that the big guys aren’t doing?The answer – Google GeographicalTargeting . Nothing new, you say? I beg to differ. Google has made it possible to use one Web site and effectively target every geographic region and language. This worked in the past to a degree, but now theWeb siteownerhas control over it. Inthepastyoucouldcreateasubdirectory or a subdomain in the native language and Google would eventually sort out that the content is targeting a specific language.Theresultswereverydodgyand unpredictable. In Google’s never-ending effort todeliver relative results they have come up with geographical targeting within theirWebmaster Central console. Here you can verify ownership of a subdomain and get the option to target a specific country or region. You can also go a step further and host the subdomain within your target region and your rankingwill significantly increase. The subdomain is actually seen as a completely different site, and if you have good Page Rank you can pass link juice through to the new subdomain site andget it rankingbetter aswell. In the United States Google goes so far as to look for addresses within the Web site content in order to determine the location, andwill deliver a localWeb site (in relation to the end-user’s IP) higher in the results than a nonlocal Web site, especially if youhave a brick-and-mortar business and the end-user is using Local Search. Now for the complicatedpart. I will do my best to try to explain why you get the results that you do when using these differ- ent regional Google searches andhow the different language- and regional-basedfilters that theyofferwork, andhow theyaffect your rankings. I’ll also attempt to explain the different attributes thealgorithm looksat and thehumanedi- tors look at, and finally what the best so- lution is for you depending on your cir- cumstances. Keep inmind that inmy testing this infor- mationappliedabout70percentofthetime and did make a significant difference in overall trafficandconversions,but I think that when there is a lack of relativeWeb sites/pages that match the algorithmic parameters a different set of rules is ap- plied either automatically via the various algorithms, or it is set aside for a human editor to rate. This could be good or bad dependingon thequalityof the site/page, the relative information that is present, and comparative Web sites in the same set of results. Go Global— TheMarkets Are Soft