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Asian Characters in URL

   
9:33 pm on Apr 7, 2008 (gmt 0)

10+ Year Member



I have my shopping cart publishing the name of the product in the URL, like:

mydomain.com/flash-memory-cards/

A few questions I have regarding when we translate our site into other languages (particularly Asian):

1. If we were to leave the English phrase in, would that in any way hurt?
2. Is there any evidence that translating the phrase into the local language has any effect?

Since the page copy will be localized, and we are specifying the geo in Google Webmaster Tools, I think we have the larger issues taken care of, but URL handling is new to me on this front.

Your feedback is appreciated.

1:48 am on Apr 8, 2008 (gmt 0)

WebmasterWorld Administrator bill is a WebmasterWorld Top Contributor of All Time 10+ Year Member Top Contributors Of The Month



1. If we were to leave the English phrase in, would that in any way hurt?

Hurt? Not particularly. I've done it both ways and haven't noticed any significant impact one way or another. The URL beyond the domain name doesn't seem to hold as much interest for the user in Asia.

2. Is there any evidence that translating the phrase into the local language has any effect?

Look at DMOZ. They went all the way not just translating, but actually encoding the entire URL (after the domain) into the local language. That may work well for highly structured directory or wiki sites, but the trend certainly hasn't carried over to the mainstream Japanese and Chinese sites I monitor.

The most popular SE/Directory in Japan, Yahoo Japan, uses English in its URL structure for the directory.

 

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