Baidu: Top tips for SEO success
Baidu – whose name translates as “100s of times” – is China’s leading search engine. If you’re planning on entering the Chinese market, then it is essential to understand Baidu (and the Chinese digital eco system more broadly). In this blog, we provide top tips for SEO success on Baidu.
(This is an edited extract of our detailed guide to Baidu which you can read in full here).
Baidu SEO recommendations
Key considerations for performing well on Baidu include:
- Use Pinyin, the official romanisation for Standard Chinese, or English in URLs. Stick to lowercase characters and only use hyphens for segmenting words. Chinese (ideally simplified) should be used for everything else.
- Focus on Simplified Chinese for China. Traditional Chinese for anywhere else.
- Meta tag optimisation is important: Title tags should be optimised to approximately 80 characters (remember that Chinese is a double byte language). Meta descriptions should sit at approximately 200 characters. Remember that meta keywords are also applicable to this search engine.
- As images have a larger role to play in Baidu SERPs, the optimisation of specific images is theoretically more important. For images intended for SERP display, stick to a ratio of 121 x 75. Alt text is also highly important and should be optimised site wide.
- Duplicate content should be avoided at all costs. Try not to rely on canonicalization to rectify this issue if you have duplicate issues on-site.
- Pay a lot of attention to the homepage. This page is more likely to get indexed than any other and can be a real traffic driver from the SERPs.
- Adding fresh news content regularly to a website, even if it is not original, will help SEO on Baidu.
- Local hosting is worth the investment of time and money if you are serious about Baidu SEO. You will need an ICP license. Alternatively use a CDN that surrounds mainland China.
- Baidu prefers a China ccTLD (.cn or .com.cn). A China subfolder may be detrimental to site performance, because of potential content restrictions and other languages being present.
- Social media links should be China-focussed. Do not include links to banned sites.
- Baidu does not crawl too deep, so make sure that your important pages are easily accessible and well linked.
- Fresh content is highly influential. Create a blog and about sections for your site. These will help drive authority.
- Keywords, as well as websites can be affected by censorship. Make sure you are not targeting censored keywords in your pages
Oban can help
To find out how Oban can help you achieve international SEO success, whichever search engine you are targeting, please get in touch.
Mike Turnham | Head of Delivery
Oban International is the digital marketing agency specialising in international expansion. Our LIME (Local In-Market Expert) Network provides up to date cultural input and insights from over 80 markets around the world, helping clients realise the best marketing opportunities and avoid the costliest mistakes.