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Have a Dilemma here need some opinions

Built a site for a New Gov mandate



9:41 pm on Jun 23, 2009 (gmt 0)

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

Specific Niche that the Federal Gov. is changing Guidelines on how a company operates in about a year. Any company doing business in the US will be under the US laws.

First time I am working on something that is a ways off.
Dilemma is this.

I bought the name of the New Federal mandate and built a site using Gov. information and information I as well wrote on the topic. The Mandate is in testing in a couple of States right now so the information is being changed as the testing progresses.

I have good quality information on the site and it was indexed and ranked in a couple days by all 3 SE's under the gov site so #2.

The domain I launched is a .com we as well have a Canada Partner and he bought the .ca domain and they want me to build one for it in English and French.

I can only paint red one way as the information has to be correct so not much rewording can happen.

If I clone the .com to the .ca what is your thoughts. We really only care if the .ca comes up in the google.ca search.

The .com will have more information than the .ca as we are in the process of setting up interviews with some companies under the new mandate and that information will only be on the .com.

Most of the cloned information will be the way the new mandate reads and explained by Gov. websites.

[edited by: httpwebwitch at 10:29 pm (utc) on Aug. 18, 2009]
[edit reason] speeling [/edit]


10:27 pm on Aug 18, 2009 (gmt 0)

WebmasterWorld Administrator httpwebwitch is a WebmasterWorld Top Contributor of All Time 10+ Year Member

Canadian and U.S. laws are usually quite similar, though we up here in the Great White North have different names for everything. But watch out - there are some significant differences... our Charter isn't identical to your Constitution.

IANAL (I am not a lawyer) so I can't give specific advice on legal issues... just be prudent about plagiarism (legal), duplicate content (SEO), and be forewarned that building a bilingual site is twice as much work, even if the sites are half the size. Really.


11:07 pm on Aug 18, 2009 (gmt 0)

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

Be carefull with your french ..Québécois ( Canadian french ) isnt the same as "France" french ..( which further subdivides into ( Paris )..( metro )..( provence )..( dom tom )..( outre mer ) and francophone ..and the nuances count and can change the meaning entirely ..

In spite of what wikipedia might say ..


12:31 am on Aug 19, 2009 (gmt 0)

WebmasterWorld Senior Member 10+ Year Member

So the .ca will tell Canadians how these new US laws affect those that do business in the US?
How about adding extra bits explaining how these US laws are different to the way the Canadian system works?
You could have little sidebars here and there giving the canadian equivalents - that should break it up a fair bit!

And apparently there aren't dup-content issues between different languages - IIRC Matt Cutts said they are looked at as different, FWIW, in case you were worrying about that too :)


1:34 am on Aug 19, 2009 (gmt 0)

WebmasterWorld Administrator httpwebwitch is a WebmasterWorld Top Contributor of All Time 10+ Year Member

buliding a bilingual site is a topic which could go on for ever... it's just dang complicated. It seems like it should be simple but it just ain't.

Where I work now, we do it the smart way. Our templates are all language-agnostic, and we keep all our phrases in an enormous XML file as we develop the interface. That file is parsed, compiled, and cached in a dictionary object so it's always in memory thus assembling the layout is super-quick. Since all parts of the site are modular and programmatically rendered (with aggressive caching), it's simple to build any page, passing "en-us" as a parameter.

You need to figure out early how you're going to architect the bilingual site. Develop your URL strategy. My favourite method is to build "en.example.com" and "fr.example.com", and for every page on the "en" there is an identical (but translated) one on the "fr". "www" redirects to "en" by default, but may redirect to "fr" if the user has a french cookie.

I once worked for a company that insisted that not only should the content be bilingual, but every part of the URL should as well. That meant that there was a page called "health-insurance.html" but the french version was called "lassurance-maladie.html". That was a nightmare, I kid you not (it was a 2000+ page static website built in FRONTPAGE.)

What Leosghost says is true. Québecois is about as similar to Francais as US English is to UK English. It's mostly the same. But the differences will be very apparent to a Québecois reader. Imagine you're reading copy full of references to "trousers" (pants), "jumpers" (sweaters), and "chips" (fries)... you just know that the copy was written by a Brit. Make sure you have a Québecois translator do your French for the .ca site.

Interlink the english and french versions diligently. Let each french page have a link to the english version, and vice-versa.

Incidentally, bilingual sites tend to rank extremely well. They have a greater surface area for inbound links, and the interlinking form en->fr and fr->en passes PR efficiently from one language to the other to both sides' benefit.


2:06 am on Aug 19, 2009 (gmt 0)

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

Make your nav , alt tags , image names , everything bi-lingual ..bi-lingual urls like httpwebwitch mentioned are perfect ..they are well worth the effort even on static sites ( all mine use bi-lingual urls etc etc ) ..but I'm "artisanal" in my approach and only put them online slowly .. Then leave them and build another ..they rise and I leave them alone ..( add new content a little at a time ..a couple of pages every six months or so )..they bob like corks on the waves ..and like corks they stay on the top of the surf ..:)

You can on some sites ( structure and design permitting ) mirror your entire nav ..either english top / french bottom or vice versa or english left column / french right etc ..you switch the text , images etc displayed in the middle ..

You can get more complex ..but even a simple version of the above structure once set up will rank on page one for years ( through all dances and algo moves and across all engines ) ..

I built my first ever site this way ..targeted 50 single keywords and 100 double keyword phrases ..site has 100 pages in each language ..has never left pages 1 to 3 on G or Y or the now Bing for any of them ..

Competition on that sites "targets" ranges from 150K to 3 million for some keywords phrases ( it's "niche" ..but it was my first ..and I discovered the ranking possibilities of two languages or more by accident )..Once you realise how to do it ..you'll make other sites bi-lingual ..plus if you actually think in the second language ..you get more choices on low hanging domain names :)


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