How to Target Country-Specific Website Traffic

Targeted Country trafficOver time I have shared many ways to drive traffic to your website, but as most of us know, traffic from countries such as the U.S. and the U.K. converts better in terms of advertising and affiliate sales, because of the purchasing power of users from these countries.

There are many factors that can help you to get country specific traffic. For example, ShoutMeLoud has an Indian Alexa rank of 388, which shows how popular ShoutMeLoud is in India, where as global rank is 3588, which shows how popular it is globally. I could actually work on targeting U.S. based traffic, but whenever I iterate my blog business plan, I make changes in my target audience and then I realize that it’s better to target an Indian audience as it provides less competition and a better supply:demand ratio. There are very few blogs in India that teach the A to Z of blogging, and being in this niche for several years, ShoutMeLoud has an advantage.

This reflects my particular case, but I’m sure there are many of you who are blogging for AdSense income, and may want to target traffic from specific countries.  In this post I will share some ideas that are likely to help you to improve the traffic from your target country.

There is, of course, the easy solution of buying country-specific traffic, which can work in the case of commercial and E-commerce sites.  But for a blog, going natural is the best way.

Driving country-specific traffic:

Domain name:

Top level domain extensions like .com and .org usually rank higher on global search engines, but in order to have your blog or website target a specific country, buying a country-specific domain is always a good idea.

You may notice that most of the Aussie bloggers are using the .au domain extension, and they rank pretty high in the Australian Google search. Similarly for India, you can target .in or .co.in as your domain extensions with good results.  For traffic from the U.K. (United Kingdom), grab a .co.uk domain extension for best results.

In an effort to preserve your brand, you can also buy other TLD’s like .com or .org.  But one major disadvantage of this idea is that you will find it very hard to rank on other country-specific search engines.  So, if your goal is clear and you know your target audience, a country-specific domain extension is your best bet.

Here you can find a list of genetic TLD’s. You can buy domains from ShoutMyDomain, Godaddy or Namecheap.

Google Webmaster Tool Geotargeting:

Google Webmaster Tool, a free tool from Google for bloggers and webmasters, will be very helpful to a blogger or webmaster seeking country-specific traffic. This tool allows you to set which country your website is targeted to, and this in turn helps you to get traffic from your targeted country.

Log in and verify your website in Google Webmaster Tool, and under Configurations > Settings you can specify which country you wish to target.

Geotargeting Website traffic

You can learn more about geotargeting your website from this video:

Webhosting server location:

Another significant factor in driving geo-targeted traffic is your server location. If your target country for traffic is the U.S. (United States), you will want to host your website on U.S. based servers. If you’re targeting traffic from Australia, host your website in Australia.

Other factors like CDN also help to speed up your website in different countries, but in order to remain focused on your target traffic, host your website only in the country whose traffic you’re targeting. This will ensure that your website will load faster in that country due to the server’s IP, and search engines bots will be able to determine the location of your server.  All of this will help your site to rang higher in the particular country whose traffic you’re targeting.

Backlinks:

When Google search was launched, they used backlinks to determine the popularity of content. Much has change over time, but the importance of backlinks remains significant. For this reason, it is a good idea to target country-specific backlinks.

For example, if your target audience is in U.K., try to get more backlinks from U.K.-based websites. You can use Alexa to find a list of popular websites in a particular country, or to find domains with country-specific domain names. This particular strategy is proven to be most efficient when you want to target traffic from a specific country.

You can drive country-based backlinks by taking advantage of guest blogging opportunites, or by spending some time on the art of blog commenting. Both the methods are proven and Penguin-safe, if done properly.

Content level targeting:

Your content is the main signal that Google uses to determine which country you are targeting. If you are targeting multiple countries with your generic domain name extension (.com, .org), add the country’s name in your posts’ meta titles and descriptions. This will not only make your content more keyword-targeted, but it will also give a clear signal to the country you are targeting.

Additionally, the kind of content and language you are using in your articles will also determine the ranking of your website. We all know that readability is a known SEO factor, and if your language is targeted more to Indian standards, targeting U.S. traffic will be very difficult. For this reason you need to be sure to improve your language for the specific country whose traffic you’re targeting, or hire writers or editors from that specific country or who have excellent writing and grammatical skills in that country’s language.

Local SEO using Google Places:

This may not apply to a generic blog, but if you are running a service blog or an E-commerce website, Google Places is going to be very handy. Claim your business in Google Places, and add all related information such as address, phone number, etc.  This will help Google to determine the business location of your business.

You can also create social media profiles on various websites, and fill out the information in an effort to help you to get more local citations, in order to push the specific traffic of your targeted country. You can try Knowem to check the availability of social media profiles.

Submit your website in local search engines and directories:

I have previously shared places to submit your website that are targeted to a global audience. For country-based traffic, you should submit your website to local search engines and local web directories. This will eventually become a very useful tool for getting country-specific backlinks, which will in turn become a significant factor in determining your geo-location traffic.

Use Google Trends to see keyword popularity:

Country based Traffic Keywords
As I mentioned previously, you should target your blog’s content toward keywords which are popular in the specific country whose traffic you are targeting. For example, the keyword 160by2 is very popular in India, but not in the rest of the world.

Try to find keywords which are popular with the audience in your target country, and craft a content strategy based on that. For example, most of the time iPhone blogs will have large chunks of traffic from the U.S. or the U.K, as the iPhone is more popular in those countries compared with Asian countries.

Track keyword progress in country-specific searches:

So far we have discussed techniques you can use to target your website traffic for specific countries.  Next you will  need to keep track of the keyword progress in your target country. This will help you to find out which strategies are working and which are not. When you identify a strategy that works, you can focus on that strategy and work on it to push it to the next level. You can use Authoritylabs or SEMRUSH to check keyword rankings in particular countries.

Whenever you are writing a business plan for your blog, your targeted country should be at the top of your priority list, as it will help you to efficiently plan your content marketing and guest blogging campaigns.

Do you follow any other methods to target website traffic for a particular country? Let me know using the comments section below!

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Article By
Harsh Agrawal is a blog scientist and a professional blogger. He loves to read & write about Blogging, SEO, WordPress, Make money online & technology. His blog, ShoutMeLoud receives more than half a million PV in a month, and is an award winning blog.

COMMENTs ( 19 )

  1. says

    I really love your site, though your site taget is India as you said but I found that there are many keys of your site are in page 1-3.

    I often come to your site because I can learn more and more from it.

    Today I want to drive traffric from UK. so I lern from you again.

    Thanks for very good work.

  2. Ray Blanchett says

    Hello

    Looks like I have found another website owner with a lot of useful strategies for better website rankings. I have gained a higher proportion of my backlinks from India, hence more traffic. Today I have just geo targeted India in Google webmaster tools from UK, as looking for more visitors from India. With hosting in the UK, .com domain and a good lot of pages without country specific information I will experiment over time. Will be adding 30-40 pages of education related pages or other specifically using India content, hence India in the title. Will see how it goes. Thanks for all the good website information.

  3. Rakesh says

    @harsh is new domains like .today .club . Guru all new domains introduced in 2014 are equivalent to .com and.in domain. Is there is any difficulty to rank them, please give your suggestion.

  4. Rajkumar says

    Hi Harsh, I was Reading all your posts and I got stuck in this Post. I have Just started blogging with .in domain. As I read We can generate Good money If our targeted visitors from US or UK. From .in domain , Can I get traffic from US or not. If Answer is Not than Should I switch to .com domain and put my all posts on that domain or any other solution ???

  5. Lawrence says

    This is one write up that has really made the traffic target much simpler for me. while reading, your post was like I am attending a seminar. Thanks

  6. Dinesh says

    Is there any difference between .in and .co.in domain, when the focus of my web site only on India

  7. ashish says

    Geo targeting is always works for country specific traffic. But comment and GP are new ideas. I didn’t know them ,

  8. Rakesh says

    can a .co domain is batter then .in domain with use of webmaster tp Target Country Specific Website Traffic

    • Rakesh says

      Hi Harsh

      Please answer my Question is .co domain with country target to India vs .in domain domain compete ?

      • says

        @Rakesh
        I’m unsure about it.. as I have never tried or read about .co domain experiment. For other domain extension, a .com domain with country target set as India can outrank .in domaine extension.

  9. says

    This is an impressive stuff shared by you.
    As I know, people do love to attract more traffic from the other countries like US, UK and Australia, because they are giving much better CPC than Asian countries.
    Thanks for sharing this stuff. :)

  10. swapnil says

    Harsh, i spoke to Bigrock recently about their server location and they told me even though its an indian company the server is actually in US but hostgator india have their servers in hyderabad and mumbai. Also how important do you think the server location is as a factor to get targeted traffic. my website has got country specific domain. Should i shift to an Indian server or does it suffice to have a .in domain to ensure my website lists in local search results.

    • says

      @Swapnil
      Thanks for letting me know about it, and I will remove Bigrock from the list, Server location is one of the factor, and it’s hard to determine how much weight-age Google will give to server location. I believe backlinks plays major role, as my site is hosted on U.S. server, but again a good chunk of traffic is from India.
      You can ignore the server part for a while, and focus on other tips which I shared, and they should work for you.

  11. Maxwell Ivey says

    Hello; Thanks for a very thorough approach to this important topic. I do very well in the u s, u k, canada, and australia; but i need to do much better in china, latin america, and the former soviet union. do you have any specific suggestions for this problem? what is your opinion of offering different language versions of your site? do you have a particular wordpress plug in that i could use for this? take care, max

  12. Anup Kayastha says

    Wow, these are really great ideas! I noticed that the country where I get most visits from gets higher rank in that country. I’ll start these strategies from easier steps.

    Thank so much for sharing!

    Best,
    Anup

  13. Nishant says

    That’a really nice post explaining how to get traffic from specific countrys and it is really useful for people using PPC model for blog monetization

    as we know that the CTR also depends on the country from the the person who has clicked on the ad belongs to

    I am not a big PPC publisher but some of friends who are getting most of their traffic from the US are making thousands of dollars and on the other hand others who get 2 times more the pagesviews are not able to earn much just because they are getting most of the traffic from India and other countries

  14. says

    Hi Harsh,

    Thanks for the great tips. We can also use social media to bring in country specific traffic . For example : One can use Twitter to drive country specific traffic using #country & some other stuff too.

    Works great in CPA for high epc offers.

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