Multilingual Content Markup Supported by Google
Webmasters, who wish to publish multilingual content on their websites, can do it now with the help of a new link element markup, supported by Google. The markup is designed to reach out to a global market, and is helpful in two scenarios- websites with same content but different prices, depending on the regions, and websites with translated content and substantially different monolingual content that targets different regions such as UK and Spain.
The markup can be used with rel="canonical" tag to make sure Google follows up on the main version, but the new tag itself should be more than sufficient and should help with regional rankings as well. The support is an extension to the rel="alternate" hreflang link element. The primary reason for having this markup by Google is to handle content that is translated or provided for multiple geographic regions.
To understand how the multilingual content markup works, read this-
An English language page hosted at http://www.example.com/ has a Spanish alternative at http://es.example.com/. To indicate to Google that the Spanish URL has the same content as that on the English page, you can choose any one of the following methods:
- HTML link element- In the HTML section of the English URL, add a link element pointing to the Spanish version of that webpage at http://es.example.com, like this:
- HTML header- For non-HTML files, you can an HTTP header to indicate a different language version of the URL:
<link rel="alternate" hreflang="es" href="http://es.example.com/"
<http://es.example.com/>; rel="alternate"; hreflang="es"
In case you have multiple language versions of the website in more than two languages, each language page in the set must use rel="alternate" hreflang="x" to identify the other language versions. Google believes that the new link markup will help webmasters to stay away from the duplicate content issue.