Getting listed on Baidu’s Search Engine is great if you’re looking for visibility in China. That’s a billion people of extra visibility! To be successful with SEO in China, it is key to have a good understanding of the country’s search giant.
Using the same SEO approach for Google will not work with Baidu as the search engine comes with its own rules, a unique language, censorship and many other considerations.
China Search Market
Baidu makes up for about 70% of the country’s search market traffic, followed by 360 Search (14%), Sougou (12%), Shenma and others. One of the reasons Baidu has dominated this market is its ability to interpret Chinese text better and more effectively than the other search engines. Baidu is entirely Chinese focused, giving higher priority to Chinese language sites. Few non-Chinese sites are even included or indexed.
Baidu offers a number of services apart from search including cloud computing, travel sites, maps, music and video platforms, translation services, a Wikipedia clone with over 13 million articles, a web browser, an Android-based mobile operating system, and even self-driving cars. Baidu makes the majority of its revenue through their ad network.
Baidu’s Search Algorithm
Baidu’s search algorithm abibes by the same practices as Google, but less effectively with a 5 year lag. Baidu seems to implement methods a bit behind Google, for instance checking for low quality content or fighting link spam, however they do eventually get to it.
To maintain good and effective Baidu SEO, here are some tips and techniques to keep in mind.
Baidu checks for localized signs such as server location, content language, top-level domain (.cn), business address, backlinks, mentions, or citations. Crawling and indexing of non-Chinese sites is less reliable and low priority. The majority of Baidu users come from Mainland China and are interested in local content simplified in Chinese. China also has a Great Firewall which may filter connections and overseas servers, blocking certain sites.
Content is King
An essential to good SEO is having useful content. Provide useful, unspun content that makes sense. Google has mechanisms in place to sniff out bad content, such and bounce rate, duplicate/spun content sniffing, etc. When developing content, always keep in mind if it is something you yourself would like to see/read about. Ensure that your keywords are well written and straight to the point such that the users will not take too long to figure out if the page has what they need; also make your content short and precise. By keeping that in mind, your content will be more engaging and will invite visitors to share.
For a new site, domain age is a factor, because typically a new site does not have much content or inbound links, so for that reason it will be more difficult to rank well in the search index. After a few months, site rankings can be based on various SEO factors, so at that point age is no longer such an important issue. Websites that have been around longer than others are given more authority for the most part due to their established credibility on the Internet. This is only accomplished with time.
When writing content, give focus to:
- Engage your visitors
- Create healthy backlinks with relevant inbound and outbound links
- Cite sources
- Make content easy to read
- Add quality images and videos that help retain visitors or add site time
- Utilize healthy keyword usage
- “How to’s” and “What is” type content is favored by Google as well as audiences
- Cater to humans and make content natural and organic while keeping in mind what search engines look for
- Focus on your target audience and use social media in combination to promote your content.
Here are some tips for getting on Baidu:
To be listed on Baidu, make sure to follow the techniques mentioned in addition to following government rules. Here are some to keep in mind.
- Don’t talk about s(e)x or you’ll be out
- Don’t attack the Chinese government
Baidu actively censors content in line with Chinese government regulations, so be very careful with what you put on your site.
- Use Chinese in your website (but don’t mix several languages on the same page – that’s a general statement, not only for chinese)
- Use a .cn / .org.cn / or .com.cn domain name. Baidu loves China and shows it in its search engine response pages rankings.
- Host your website in China. Baidu prefers Chinese IP’s.
With Google, you can host your site anywhere and then set each subdomain’s location using the Geotargeting tool to specify which region it’s relevant to. Baidu doesn’t appear to offer the same, so your best bet is to buy a Chinese top level domain and host it on a server in China.
- Have many links. Baidu prefers quantity over quality.
- Don’t try to have a pagerank 6 or above links like you would do for google. Just have thousands of backlinks.
- Add fresh content; like Google, Baidu likes fresh content.
- Don’t use ISO-8885-1 coding in your pages but UTF-8 or GB2312 (well, UTF-8 is better because it suits any language around the globe)
- By ads on baidu!
Submit your URL to Baidu, China’s #1 Search Engine
Submit your URL to Baidu
Thank you for reading IT Blog