The role of AI and human empathy in multilanguage SEO

30 Aug 2023

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Digital-marketing expert Guido Ampollini shares advice for businesses on optimising content in different languages and regions to connect with audiences and scale globally.

Technology means that businesses can reach beyond local or regional audiences. The internet offers unparalleled opportunities to communicate with a global audience in different languages. But this brings challenges.

Research shows that more than 70pc of people are more likely to visit a website that is available in their native language. However, to convert visits into sales and loyalty, you have to think about more than just direct translation.

There are issues of authenticity, cultural sensitivity and optimal search engine visibility in every territory.

The problem is that English remains the dominant digital language. But it is only spoken by less than a fifth of the global population. This leaves a massive market segment untouched. And a conundrum for businesses looking to scale into other territories.

Businesses capable of comprehensive localisation, free from misinterpretation, meaning loss and cultural insensitivities, will have the edge, but only when integrated with distinct multilanguage SEO practices.

With unique search patterns, keyword preferences and digital behaviours present in different regions, creating native-feeling content isn’t easy, even with generative AI and quality translation services.

Understanding the potential of AI

AI content generation has been a key focus for organisations recently. With the ability to create high-ranking, SEO-optimised content capable of achieving optimal visibility, it has been a game-changer for many businesses.

Employing sophisticated algorithms and expansive data sets, AI can allow a truly strategic approach to content creation and website targeting, while using computational insights to ensure that the content not only ticks the SEO boxes but is appealing to its intended audience.

When combined with multilanguage SEO, this can further help businesses to reach an international audience. But the tech is not without limitations. And with most programmes fed by an internet renowned for inaccuracies, there is a lot of scope for things to go wrong, particularly when AI content is then translated into multiple different languages.

The answer, then, for businesses is to use AI differently. To take advantage not only of its creative abilities, but of its potential to dive into user behaviours, extract and analyse data, and create an authentically more profound user experience through the personalisation of content in every single marketplace.

Combining artificial and human intelligence

The reason so many businesses struggle to succeed in their digital endeavours despite having access to the power of AI is that they fail to recognise that AI is not a standalone solution.

While it can be an incredible way to expedite content creation, you need human input to navigate the nuances, to ensure value and to avoid cultural blunders – especially when translating.

A productive synergy between AI’s speed and human insight is the key for businesses to not only reach new markets but to fully connect with them in a way that feels authentic.

Leveraging AI for multilanguage SEO

It’s important to take a structured approach to streamline the process of multilanguage SEO content creation.

  • Define your goals: Which audience do you want to target? What language do they speak? What key messages will you communicate?
  • Harness local experts: Work with a team of native professionals who will be able to offer their cultural knowledge while eliminating any language barriers. Provide them with the necessary AI tools to elevate their efficiency.
  • Research keywords: Even with AI’s capabilities, carrying out your own localised keyword research will be invaluable for optimising your work.
  • Merge techniques: Try AI for the likes of data analysis but use your human team for content personalisation. This will ensure every piece of content is relevant across different platforms and cultures.
  • Think technical: Optimise your technical SEO. Implement language targeting. Build quality backlinks. Monitor and analyse your site performance. And adopt a flexible site structure, so you can ensure relevancy in different regions.
  • Continually evolve: Technology is evolving before our eyes and global markets are continuing to shift. Therefore, if you want to survive and thrive, it’s essential that you continuously adapt and refine your strategy. Use a combination of data-informed and human-validated choices for the best results.

Multilanguage SEO can seem complex and many businesses fall at the first hurdle, wasting funds and time on failed attempts. But when you build your strategy upon a dual foundation of technology and people, you can transform both your content and your business. The opportunity for international success is enormous, you just need the right approach to take advantage of it.

By Guido Ampollini

Guido Ampollini is the founder and CEO of GA Agency, an independent digital agency based in London. The agency specialises in international expansion and has an in-house team that is fluent in 16 languages.

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