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As a default option I'll just do what I'd do for Google. However, if anyone knows of any advice specific to Baidu it'd been handy. I can read Chinese (albeit slowly) so English or Chinese links would be welcome.
Thanks for any advice.
I've always done well on my Chinese stuff in Baidu without specifically optimizing for it. I think that if you have Google-ready sites then that's a step in the right direction. There are members here who know a lot about Baidu, and I hope they'll jump in.
I recall that Baidu had a PPC program. That might be the quickest way to jump to the top of the SERPs there.
Can my english pages rank well on Baidu for searches made using English keywords?
I think there are few people( <0.1% ) using english keywords to search on Baidu. Search English webpages in China, google is the best one, some people use MSN & Fast.
BTW: Optimize for Baidu, the image alt attribute plays a very important role. The spam filter system of Baidu is weak. Even they did not build the filter system to fight against spame webpages.
Optimize for Google, Sina.com.cn uses Google's search results now. I found more visitors came from sina since they applied Google.
My customers in China are English speaking and are likely to search in English. Can my english pages rank well on Baidu for searches made using English keywords?"
In my opinion, yes, you could rank well for searches make using english keywords. There are lots of ways to identify the relavency of a website, English is just one way to explain the content of a website, like keyword. I read an article said that before search engines become so smart, in the help file of a directory, it usually said that you could find the info you want by typing English even though it dose not written in English. Most of the search engines and directories keep this function very well, that is if you use Chinese to search Chinese Embassy in USA, the result will turn to be in English, and it should be in English. Baidu already did not show the Chinese Embassy in USA at the top of its results, its already near. English is the global language, I don't think it will give up it even though its target market is China.
But I am just thinking whether your target clients will prefer Baidu thank Google? Because, IMO, English speaking people tend to use Google more than Baidu. Are you sure your "customers in China are English speaking and are likely to search in English"?
As for 'what else' you can do to make sure you are listed in Baidu - first, see if you are there at all. If you are, it's just a matter of optimising. If not and you don't want to wait for the submitted url to be spidered, you could maybe do a search on your keywords, see what other sites come up and see if there are forums you can post on, sites that will link to you, etc - that will bring a little traffic in itself, plus let baidu's spiders find you . . .
Incidentally, I'd be interested to know more about what kind of business you are in - sticky me if it's not top secret. . .