Over the past ten years, the amount of Spanish content that can be found on the Internet has escalated, along with the number of Spanish speakers who are searching for it. According to “Look for Surge”, 75% of the searches performed online in 1996 were in English, however today this statistic has decreased to a much quieter 25%. As U.S.-Hispanics continue to use and install high-speed Internet, they are looking not only for fast results, but for accurate ones as well.
Since many U.S.-Hispanics are fluent in two languages, companies should look at this as two opportunities to reach out to this audience. One of the most overlooked ways for companies to appeal to this demographic is through Spanish Search Engine Optimization or Spanish SEO. According to “SEO Learning”, SEO is a process that involves improving the volume and quality of a website’s traffic through organic (or unpaid) search results. Companies that use SEO to generate traffic to their corporate websites almost always rank higher on search engine results than those that which do not.
Press releases (aka news releases) are a perfect way for public relations pros to use Spanish SEO in order to increase their messages’ visibility to their target audiences. Social media forms such as blogs, podcasts, newsrooms, etc. are known for using SEO tactics as well to generate traffic. According to “SEO Success”, in order to market toward a specific demographic, the company must first focus on specific locations where their potential customers reside. For example, a business in southwestern United States should carefully examine which phrases would attract those U.S.-Hispanics who live in Texas, New Mexico, California, Arizona, and Colorado because these phrases could have a different meaning or relevance if used on the East Coast.
There are several elements press releases (and social media) should contain in order to be successful and receive as many views as possible. According to CEO of Sensis, Jose Villa in the article “SEO en Español”, keywords are important to include in press releases, however public relations pros should make sure they use cultural relevance to understand their meaning instead of performing a straightforward word-for-word translation. Also, the placement of these keywords is essential in making sure the search engines recognize them. To illustrate, keywords should be included in headlines, sub-headlines, lead paragraphs, or be put in bold or italics style font. Furthermore, press releases should include links to relevant sites for their viewers to further continue reading.
According to “English to Spanish”, if companies have appropriate keywords they can increase their effectiveness by translating them in both English and Spanish before placing them on their sites. In doing so, companies will double their chances of reaching customers whether they solely speak English, Spanish, or perhaps both.
Spanish SEO is a helpful tactic for companies to gain recognition from their Hispanic audiences because it can easily be measured. The amount of traffic their sites, blogs, newsrooms, press releases, etc. generate from Spanish SEO should continually be monitored for best results. Spanish SEO is a new curveball thrown at social media that companies should incorporate before they strikeout in search engine results.