European SEO type question

(LJ) #1

I have a new client who’s building a golf club in Spain. His business is UK based and he’ll undoubtedly have a lot of UK customers. However, others will come from elsewhere in Europe and further afield. So should I go for a Spanish top level ccTLD (.es), .eu, .com or what as the primary domain? And does it matter? Pretty much all of my work is for local UK businesses so never had to consider this issue

(Ric) #2

I picked up a new domain name yesterday from GoDaddy.
GD then tried to flog me every other alternative available and I was surprised at the huge number of extensions now available.
The plethora of new extensions, 640 in all, from .abogado to .zone (let alone the chinese characters) simply reinforced my belief that .com retains the crown.

If you listened to a recent RW podcast where the lads couldn’t see the blindingly obvious reason why the www. prefix should be retained then .com is a similar case in point.
Dropped into a sentence .wang, .sports or .qpon, look more like typos than they do web addresses so the www. helps highlight it’s intended meaning. But to most the .com ending would be instantly recognisable.

(LJ) #3

That’s what I was thinking and fortunately we have secured the .com domain. I think that if it were a primarily Spanish offering for local people then the country domain would be good but in this case I think it’s .com


That’s a difficult one for sure. I would say that if your primary consideration was a high ranking for searches in Spain or with Spanish customers go for .es and likewise .uk if primarily concerned with traffic from the UK. For an international audience .com is probably still best but may suffer a bit locally compared to the competition.

(Dave Hughes) #5

Spot on. Domain strategy and SEO is as much art as science but the sentiment seems to be that the search engines are valuing local domains slightly higher if the content in question has a clear physical location (this is coming from a retail background). However more important will be the right content so it gets picked up in the appropriate places. If cash and time permit it, I’d go for country domains where you think you have large sources of customers and a .com for the rest. But its not a science!

(LJ) #6

Cash not a problem - I’ll have a bundle of domains - it’s which one to use as the ‘canonical’ domain that I’m interested in. I doubt many local people will be searching but on the other hand plenty of Europeans will be searching for “golf club in spain” etc and of course in different languages - that’s another issue.


One thing to be wary of is duplicate content, so avoid setting up the same or similar sites with different country domains. You could in theory set up small sites for .es etc in local language that then link to the main .com domain but that will require more planning and work. There are usually more questions than answers in cases like this.

(Peter Danckwerts) #8

Judging from the large number of Spanish, French, German, Italian, etc, businesses which choose to use .com, I’d have thought that was at least as good as any other suffix.