Asia SEO has been providing digital marketing and search engine optimization services to companies in China and across Asia for the past 10 years.
In this article we will give you some insights and provide you with some tips on how to get your website found on the search engines in China and overseas.
Anyone living and working in China will already know that things operate very differently here compared to the outside world, especially when it comes to anything related to the Chinese internet ecosystem.
The internet is awash with misinformation that can lead you down an expensive and convoluted rabbit hole and ultimately stop you from getting the results you want.
Do I need a Chinese .cn domain name?
No, you certainly not need a .cn domain name and we highly recommend not using a .cn domain name, you may wish to register the .cn variation of domain name to stop someone else taking it, but its best to use a .com or other top level domain.
Taobao, Baidu, Alibaba, Alipay, Weibo and Youku all use .com domain name extensions.
We have even achieved first position results on Baidu for a website that had a .co.uk domain name extension.
Do I need to host my website in China?
Unless your website is in a highly restricted and regulated industry that requires your website to be hosted in China, we recommend that you do not host your website in China as the cost, administration and performance lacks in quality when compared to hosting services available overseas.
We host all of our China websites with Cloudways servers in Singapore which are extremely fast and affordable. They also have the options to host your website on servers in Tokyo, Sydney and Seoul. We have tested all of these locations and speeds have always been excellent when accessed from inside China.
But isn’t Google blocked in China?
Google was blocked in China in 2010 but is still commonly used via VPN access and many companies in China still rely on traffic from Google to generate new customers from overseas or within China.
Being blocked sometimes means that your competitors are not utilizing it and can give you an advantage.
Bing is also used more often in China when compared to its usage in other countries.
Many of our clients are often very surprised by the amount of traffic that is generated to their website from Google and often overlook traffic from Chinese outside of China and traffic from Hong Kong and Taiwan.
How is Baidu SEO different to Google SEO?
In our experience optimizing your website for either Google or Baidu is very similar in terms of on-site SEO, however to ensure success with Baidu it is important to ensure your website is optimized with Chinese language content and without any references, code or links to sites such as Facebook, YouTube, Twitter or other websites that are blocked in China. This includes and “like” buttons or widgets that you might commonly find on English language websites.
Instead we encourage our clients to integrate Chinese platforms on their website, such as Weibo sharing widgets, Youku videos and Baidu maps.
Google local business listings is not supported in mainland China, instead we recommend using Bing maps and Baidu maps listings. Also if you have a Hong Kong office to use that location for your Google listing to take advantage of the Google reviews system.