Welcome to WebmasterWorld Guest from 220.127.116.11
Question: what is the best location to host this website (currently all english text)
Question: will it be an advantage to split the application and make the widgets that are targetted for Germany for example in a separate application/website and host that in Germany?
Question: what is better? make the application/main website multilingual on 1 domain (www.widgets.com/de/deutsche-widchets.html) or to break the domain and application up in more applications and translate it then on the seprate domain and host that in the country where the target users live (www.widgets.de/deutsche-widchets.html)
With local search being a hot topic this and the coming years I hope someone can share some experience on this.
One of our sites which is in two languages - English & Spanish - has number one posistion for our main key word in all Google search engines we have looked up.
This site is a .com hosted in Atlanta by a large well known US hosting company. Certainly for your English language site you couldn't go wrong by following that path.
On [google.nl,...] there is no such thing as searching for sites in the Netherlands, we have only the option to search for sites in the Dutch language, but on [google.de,...] there ís the option to search for sites in Germany only. The same goes for many other localized versions of Google, like the French and UK versions.
Therefore if you are targeting specific customers in a country with their own language, i.e. German users with a German language version of the site, or French users for example, you will increase your number of visitors if you use a host based in that country. It is because many of those users do not speak the English language very well and to avoid seeing sites in an unknown language they search the web with the option "sites in country XXX".
So in my opinion from a Google SERP point of view, I would split the language versions to different domains www.widget.de, www.widget.co.uk, etc and host them in that specific country.