Hreflang tag

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Hreflang tag

What is the hreflang tag?

The hreflang tag is an HTML tag used to tell search engines that the content of a particular web page is intended for a specific language and geographical region. It helps the search engines provide localized results for users in that area, increasing their likelihood of finding the content they are looking for. This tag can be a great tool for improving a website’s international reach and visibility, helping it show up in localized search results all over the world. Additionally, the hreflang tag also ensures that search engines aren’t linking users to content in a language or country that isn’t relevant to them. The purpose of the hreflang tag is to ensure users can easily find the content they are looking for in the most appropriate language for their geographical region.

How does it work?

If you created a Russian version of your website, then you would include hreflang=”ru” on your pages. Google would then know to show this version of the website when displaying results to a customer in a Russian speaking country. 

You can also use the tag to specify regions where the content has been localized for the audience. For example, if you had Spanish content that was localized for Spain, you would include hreflang=”es-es”, while Spanish content for Mexico would be written hreflang=”es-mx”.

Likewise,  you can use multiple hreflang tags on a single page as well. This is particularly useful for web pages with content in multiple languages. 

How important is hreflang?

Hreflang is incredibly important for multilingual websites and websites with an international audience. Without it, website owners are likely to run into translation issues, loss of traffic, or missed opportunities to convert customers. By using hreflang, websites are able to direct web crawlers to the correct version of their site for each language or country, ensuring users from any region or language get the correct content for their language and locale. In other words, hreflang can ensure users always get the best user experience possible.

How do I add hreflang tags to my website?

To generate an hreflang tag, use the language code from the ISO 639-1 and add it to on the the following places:

  • Your site map
  • The HTTP header
  • The on-page markup

It is important to note that the hreflang tag will not translate your website into a different language. You need to make sure that your website content is available in the language indicated by the hreflang tag. The Hreflang tag offers website developers considerable control over the localization of their site internationally, and plays an important role in serving customers from different countries.

Related: SEO: International
Related: Understanding Search Engines