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Geo targeting a website without a generic domain name

Geo targeting a website without a generic domain name - answered by Matt Cutts

Summary:

Usual if you have a country specific domain it is not possible to geotarget another country but there are some cases which allow that. Because some domains are often used as generic even they are country specific they allow geotargeting as they were generic. There are about 40 such kind of domains which can be used as generic.

 

Matt's answer:

So that’s a really tricky one.  And I have to admit you’re swimming upstream here because if you have a .jp domain and you want to target Finland, you’re really going against a lot of expectations and conventions that people use on the net. So one thing to think about is whether it’s possible to get a generic TLD that you could then use for other countries. Certainly you can try to segment stuff into different subdomains or subdirectories. But in general, if we see something like .jp, we’re typically going to assume that that’s relevant to Japan and not as relevant to Norway, or Sweden, or Finland, or something like that.

 

There are some domains that can be targeted to different countries

So if you look at the metadata for this video, we’ll include a link to a webmaster help center documentation page. And the way to think of it is that there’s about 20 different TLDs that can be sufficiently generic that you can target them to different countries so .com, .net, .org, even .name, a bunch of stuff like that.

 

Now some of those TLDs like .mil, you might not be able to get domain names. But several of them might be worth investigation. There’s also about 20 or so country code domains that are still generic enough that we allow people to target them to different countries. So for example, .me is Montenegro, I believe. And yet enough people like there’s a company called about.me. They will do different sorts of things. So there are some of those, like .tv, that are supposed to be country-level domains, but in practice are used by a bunch of different people around the world. And so we do allow those to be targeted as well.

 

There are about 40 total different domains that you could use

So if you have a very specific country-level domain and you’re trying to target a whole bunch of other countries, you might think about looking for something from that list, where you can expand and go a little bit more generic and then target the parts of your sites to those specific countries.


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

 

Original video: