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More on geographic targeting

More on geographic targeting - answered by Matt Cutts

Matt's answer:

CUTTS: I wanted to talk to you a little bit more about dot com showing up for different countries. So, the team that deals with which websites are relevant for which countries is starting to show, for example, dot coms a little bit more for, say, dot UK searchers or something like that. Now, one thing that we’re trying to use as a signal is what you tell us in webmaster central. So, for example, if you own a dot com but you’re really, really relevant to a specific country like Australia, you can specify “this dot com is really relevant to Australia.” Now the one thing to be careful of is not to sort of mix that up. For example, there was a site that was talking about a directory of streets that was really, really, really relevant to Singapore. Whenever you loaded it up, even though it was a dot com, it pretty much started with the island of Singapore and that was all you saw. Well, this site, we thought was about Singapore and they went in to webmasters central and they sort of changed their setting to say, “No, no, we’re relevant to the U.S.” Now, if you do that, if we think that you’re relevant to a specific country like Singapore and you changed it to the dot U.S. or you know, the United States, what that can end up doing is you don’t show up for people in Singapore as much and you might not show up as much for people in the United States. So, don’t try to do stuff like, oh, yeah, we already show up a lot for this country and we want to try to optimize and show up a lot more for this other country and so sort of change it from the country that you’re really about. If you’re really about Singapore, go ahead and say, “Yes, I’m about to Singapore.” And that’s just a very useful thing. We are looking at that information more and more over time. And so if you tell us I’m about this country, we’ll definitely take that into account. But if we’re think–we think that you’re about a country like Singapore and you change it to say “No, no, I’m about something completely else,” you might not show up as much for Singapore searchers. So, that’s just something to be aware of.

by Matt Cutts - Google's Head of Search Quality Team


Original video: