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Launching a US-based version of my UK company

Should I just start afresh?

10:52 pm on Feb 11, 2015 (gmt 0)

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Hello all!

I run a UK-based website offering bespoke services to clients in the UK. The service I provide can also be provided in the USA, however, for SEO purposes, my current site is fully UK targeted.

I now want to get the US-version up and running (I own the .com domain name already). My question is: do I simply create a copy of my current site on the .com domain and limit it to US visitors, or should I start again as a completely different company, branding, etc?

If people recommend simply porting the site over, is this easy to do? Will it cause duplicate content issues (something I had the misfortune of experiencing a few years back, and do not want again!).

Cheers in advance for any opinions...
1:06 am on Feb 14, 2015 (gmt 0)

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You are working with similar but different markets.
The new site should reflect that and you will need to modify the US site independent of the UK site.

Your offerings can be similar in nature, but I would perform some research to define which markets, you should focus on, and promote them differently in US.

Once you have done that, I suggest you do a limited roll out to the US market.

Find out what is working and go from there.
6:50 am on Feb 14, 2015 (gmt 0)

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WebmasterWorld Senior Member lucy24 is a WebmasterWorld Top Contributor of All Time 5+ Year Member Top Contributors Of The Month

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Will it cause duplicate content issues

That's what
<link rel = "alternate"

is for-- assuming you have pages that are essentially identical for the two regions. But even if you start out with equivalent content, make sure you've done the appropriate translations. Not all terminology glitches are as benign as state > public > prep > private > etcetera or bus > coach. Some UK expressions-- like, ahem, "bespoke"-- are not used in the US, and may not even be understood.* And vice versa, of course.

* When I was young, I had no idea that All Mod Cons was anything other than the name of a pretty good album. And let's not even talk about telephone sanitizers.

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