Search Engine Optimization in Arabic
Breaking down the customer’s journey to Awareness, Search, Consideration, and Purchase, or conversion. The search part has always been the most essential after the rise of internet marketing services and SEO, local SEO for Arabic websites still carries big opportunities for businesses in the MENA region, Local search has seen huge changes and updates in the past 5 years, so showing up on the first result of Google results can make or break your local business.
Local SEO is referred to searches within a radius of 30 Km near the searchers, or think about it as a Keyword and a Location, Doctor in Riyadh or Software services Dubai, since launching Google Maps, it’s been dominating the results of Google’s first page for local search queries, 15% of SERPs results in a local Map or 3 Pack above all results, taking position zero above organic results.
Therefore, claiming and fully optimizing your Google My Business profile is a must, choosing the primary category right can move the needle, also it’s recommended not to exceed 4 secondary categories of your business.
Uploading relevant business images of the Interior, Exterior, Staff, Logo, and Cover photos, it’s advised to put the extra effort and properly name the images with the targetted keywords,
Posting regularly is considered as Local SEO for Arabic websites best practice, once a week could be efficient depending on your niche, but always analyze the SERP, see what Google is rewarding and try to reverse engineer it to answer the searcher’s intent as needed.
Brand Prominence is one of the top 3 ranking factors for Google Maps, how well the brand is mentioned on the internet, through local press and news, and what is the ratio of direct searches, ideally, your traffic should be distributed as Direct Traffic, Branded Traffic, and Referral traffic, for example, we once noticed a huge spike in client traffic for a month, after analyzing it seemed that a radio ad was running for a competition for a 1 week period, and as the algorithm figured the brand name is being searched for directly they were instantly considered for more keywords, also it was ranking in other Arabic countries who search for his branded services.
Optimizing your website homepage, services and location pages is essential so that search engine can relate the website to the Google Maps listing, the domain authority will increase brand prominence in maps, having a dedicated landing page for services and posts to publish on Google My Business, will strengthen the relevance signals you send to Google.
Ideally, optimize each of your Arabic website pages for each keyword you try to rank for, and increase your authority on the topic by producing content around it, it’s evaluated that 70% of webpages are blog content, but video and images within the blog will strengthen its chance to rank and considered for more keywords, but make sure not to cannibalize your traffic by creating similar pages ranking for the same keyword, if it’s close match Google will figure it out, but SEO’s job is to make the search engine task easier. test like no tomorrow and stick to what works.
Social Media serves best for brand awareness, brand awareness and reputation management platform, you can secure leads and maybe conversions on Facebook, but the search is crucial to generate valuable phone calls and visits to your physical location, you can get discovered by potential clients whom you never reached on Social Media, and turn them into returning customers through appearing at the right time when they are looking for a service you provide nearby.
The internet is dominated by English content, even Arabic searchers are searching for a local business using English keywords, it differs from each country and depending on your targeted audience, and it’s not easy to optimize for English and Local SEO for Arabic websites, however, if it’s hard on you it’s as hard for your competitors, given that Arabia is not well known for SEO professionals, in many cases small tweaks can carry great benefits for your business.
Arabic SEO is an untapped opportunity for many businesses in the MENA region, and the search will never die, Google might, but having a strong base of digital presence will keep generating leads to your business.