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Old 06-22-2004   #1
Chris Sherman
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Search Marketing en Espanol

Looking for the hottest market potential in search? Look to the culture of salsa dancing, volcanic chili peppers and red hot Latin music. That's right, Spanish speaking Internet users. Search en Espanol.

Please join the discussion about today's SearchDay article: Search Marketing & the Spanish Speaking Internet. This article covers a panel at New York's Search Engine Strategies conference, and talks about the huge potential of Spanish speaking markets, as well as the unique challenges faced by search marketers wanting to target Spanish speaking Internet users.
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Old 06-22-2004   #2
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The online Spanish speaking community across the entire world (according to 2004 figures from Synovate & this ClickZ article):


All of these Spanish speaking markets are very important to all of us marketers, because of the existing market value of reaching these consumers and what they will be worth in the future.

Since there is so much variety, as a consultant and search engine marketer I have chosen to focus on the largest online market in terms of buying power. COMscore MediaMetrix reported that Internet purchasing behavior among the U.S. Hispanics is reflected in the increase in online spending which grew from $4.3 billion in 2002 to $5.6 billion in 2003. Therefore it is clear that purchasing online is a reality here in the U.S. by these Spanish speakers.

If you are interested in learning in more depth detail about the Hispanic Market, I welcome you to read my white paper “Search Engine Marketing to the U.S. Hispanic Market”. This report covers more statistics on the Hispanic market, buying power, segmentation, internet statistics and facts, a case study and recommended search engine marketing strategies you can use to effectively get your hands on this online community.

It used to be a relatively easy task translating paid ads into Spanish and/or optimizing web pages for top ranking among the most popular search engines, but now this has turned out to be a complicated process requiring research, analysis and skill that needs to be very personalized for wining a market share in the U.S. Online Hispanic market through search engine strategies.

Last edited by Nacho : 06-23-2004 at 11:03 AM.
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Old 06-23-2004   #3
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Spanish market is here and now!

Spanish market is one of the most competitive right now, inside and outside of the US. In my country, the "Internet Cafes" are every 3 blocks, people are looking for products, services and even buying online, and also the speed Internet connections probably comes next year. The government made a new law that excludes taxes if you bring something outside the country -as Internet- for $500 or less, helping those people to be part of the online market.
I have been working with companies who decide build their WebPages in two languages (English & Español); because they know the real Spanish market potential in America.
Spanish market is here and now is the time to be part of it. D o not you think?
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Old 07-02-2004   #4
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It all sounds great..

But once you get this new customer how are you going to get their money? One of the biggest problems that I have run into is the currency exchange. Add to the shipping cost that and it just chaos.

Can anyone point me to successful online American based companies(Ecommerce, Portals, Search Engines) that are successful at getting Latinos in the US. The only one I can think of is Univision.com. I want to see if companies out there at succeeded at making money off Latinos in the U.S.


Thanks,
Jose
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Old 07-02-2004   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by josethegeek
Can anyone point me to successful online American based companies(Ecommerce, Portals, Search Engines) that are successful at getting Latinos in the US.
I'm not sure at what extent you would call "successful"?

These are listed among the top visited sites among U.S. Hispanics in 2003 and are all "American based companies":

Ecommerce: Amazon.com, eBay and Quixtar
Portals: Yahoo!, MSN and YupiMSN.com, AOL, Terra.com (U.S.), Univison.com
Search Engines: Yahoo!, AOL (Google), MSN, Google

Other smaller (more down to earth companies) and based in the U.S.:

Ecommerce: MexGrocer.com, Viajeros.com, Tienda.com, SpanishToys.com, TodoFut.com, and many more.
Portals: HispanicBusiness.com, HispanicOnline.com, Monografias.com, Starmedia.com, Ya.com
Search Engines: None

Believe me and believe the numbers. As I said above:
Quote:
COMscore MediaMetrix reported that Internet purchasing behavior among the U.S. Hispanics is reflected in the increase in online spending which grew from $4.3 billion in 2002 to $5.6 billion in 2003.
Latin America does have a much smaller spending habit today, but growing very rapidly. Like my good friend Lucas Morea (CEO of Monografias.com) says, "Getting into this market now is like going back in time (like Back to the Future), where you can predict what will happen next because these markets follow the U.S. very closely. It just takes time." These are wise words from a "successful" entrepreneur that has made a lot of money from doing business where almost no one really cares to look today.
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Old 07-05-2004   #6
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Hispanics is great - but don't ignore the rest!

There's now a lot of talk in forums and at SES about targeting hispanics and about other languages. Besides welcoming that as an excellent development - I would just like to ask people to consider the language issue with a little more depth.

German is a 90 million person nation in Europe - without including Austria, Switzerland and other German speaking countries. It's an economic powerhouse and what's more is very actively using the web. Pay per click on Google there is very active and often pricey. Qualigo and Mirago are worth considering there.

France and the French are waking up the web very rapidly and it's an interesting time to be in that market with exponential growth - and in some sectors not so much competition around.

I believe, following some research into Arabic markets - that these often interesting prospects for businesses that are geared up to using their web sites to trade there.

And that's not to mention Japan and China - Japan is economically vast - and China is just vaaaast.

So hispanics yes. But the horizons go well beyond that....

Andy
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Old 07-07-2004   #7
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....

Quote:
Originally Posted by Nacho
I'm not sure at what extent you would call "successful"?

These are listed among the top visited sites among U.S. Hispanics in 2003 and are all "American based companies":

Ecommerce: Amazon.com, eBay and Quixtar
Portals: Yahoo!, MSN and YupiMSN.com, AOL, Terra.com (U.S.), Univison.com
Search Engines: Yahoo!, AOL (Google), MSN, Google

Other smaller (more down to earth companies) and based in the U.S.:

Ecommerce: MexGrocer.com, Viajeros.com, Tienda.com, SpanishToys.com, TodoFut.com, and many more.
Portals: HispanicBusiness.com, HispanicOnline.com, Monografias.com, Starmedia.com, Ya.com
Search Engines: None

Believe me and believe the numbers. As I said above:

Latin America does have a much smaller spending habit today, but growing very rapidly. Like my good friend Lucas Morea (CEO of Monografias.com) says, "Getting into this market now is like going back in time (like Back to the Future), where you can predict what will happen next because these markets follow the U.S. very closely. It just takes time." These are wise words from a "successful" entrepreneur that has made a lot of money from doing business where almost no one really cares to look today.
Nacho,
Thank You for your reply. I was actually looking more into successful sites that offered services(dating, car shopping, homes, etc) online. I wanted to see how viable a business would be if I was selling services and not an actual product that you can hold. I've been looking at the Latino market, and have worked on sites that catered to latinos, and see it as a big opportunity. I just see alot of road blocks, as far as different cultures, currency, and even the language is a little different in certain parts of Latin America.

Thanks,
Jose
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Old 07-07-2004   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by josethegeek
I was actually looking more into successful sites that offered services(dating, car shopping, homes, etc) online.
OK Jose, let's look at these categories for the U.S. Hispanic Market and see if anyone is really being successful here.

DatingAutosIn this category, it is really disappointing to see the results. The opportunity is bigger than HUGE! Try these:

Google: autos familiares, autos de lujo, autos deportivos, camionetas (PPC is a little bit better here), camiones pickup, camionetas pickup (autobytel does a good job here).
Yahoo: autos familiares, autos de lujo, autos deportivos, camionetas, camiones pickup, camionetas pickup.

For both engines, the non-paid results are just pathetic, and the paid results (PPC) is a total shame even when there are cases where the ad is Spanish, but the landing page is English. Isn't this supposed to be one of the most lucrative commercial categories? Yikes, I'm really thinking about putting my own Autos-en-Espanol.com here.

Homes
  • I think I'm going to break out crying here !!!
  • ((((screaming to an empty canyon: where are the successfull businesses?????)))) Echo answers: (((there is none))) (((none))) (((none)))
I should buy Apartamentos-en-Espanol.com for this one I guess??? Specially when I search for "apartamentos en Los Angeles" in Yahoo. At least Superpages.com in Spanish does a good job on Google, but in reality results are no different.

So, I ask you, if no one is doing it does this mean that YOU should NOT go forward? or does this mean YOU could be TAKING ALL THE PROFITS of these markets?
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Old 07-08-2004   #9
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Yesterday I read all the posts in this thread, then just closed the browser. I was a little upset. Yet I did not know why.

So this morning I come back and re-read the posts, and the original article. And still I remain a little upset. But I think I realise why. Let me explain myself.

My initial reaction was one of wow I did not realise that SEO gurus were so US centric. Worst still, US ingles centric. Now I realise that my upset was caused by something else. Put simply, I was and remain rather jealous. Why? Well, simply put, I would love to only have to SEO for a single language. Oh what joy, to be able to worry about a single language. To forget about content duplication, worry about only a handful of leading SE´s, and not some of the appalling local market SE´s here in Europe.
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Old 07-08-2004   #10
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Hello Patrick, welcome to SearchEngineWatch Forums!

I hope we get a lot more members like you to share your experiences about Search Marketing en Espanol. We need a lot of marketers/webmasters/business owners to cover the 61 million users. As I explained in my original post, I want focus on the market I know best: US Hispanic.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Patrick Berry
Now I realise that my upset was caused by something else. Put simply, I was and remain rather jealous.
We are very lucky to be in the position we are, but we also have a lot of work since the engines are still not doing much about it yet. Things will change, for marketers like you and us, search marketing has a long way to go. In the "Threats and Opportunities of Search Engine Marketing" thread, we're discussing just that. Feel welcome to drop by and give us your thoughts.
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Old 07-08-2004   #11
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Thanks

Nacho,
Thanks for your help.

Last edited by Nacho : 07-08-2004 at 06:12 PM. Reason: Removed a copy of post #8 in quote tags of previous post.
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Old 10-13-2004   #12
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Hi, Latinos.

Here is something I want to share.

I normally follow the W3C instructions for making sites written in a given language appealing to search engines and as follows.

First, if coding in XHTML for a Spanish site, I use the following code

<!DOCTYPE html PUBLIC "-//W3C//DTD XHTML 1.1//EN" "http://www.w3.org/TR/xhtml11/DTD/xhtml11.dtd">
<html xmlns="http://www.w3.org/1999/xhtml" xml:lang="es">
<head>
<title>......</title>
<meta http-equiv="Content-Type" content="text/html; charset=iso-8859-1" />
<meta name="keywords" xml:lang="es" content="..." />
<meta name="description" content="..." />
'
'
'

1. Note the use of xml:lang="es" in the tags
2. Second, we try to avoid punctuations when writing important portions of text (e.g., titles) unless the client insists in punctuation (we try first to educate them). This, however is done without compromising copy style.

I use to unicode entitities for Spanish punctuation/international characters but not all search engines index them. Indeed, some poorly written SE just index the entities. So I try to avoid special punctuations in important passages of the documents.

For an explanation of the use of xml:lang="es" and search engines, visit the W3C site.

For a sample, enter "comejen", "servicios de comejen", (without quotes) in Google. The client is the comejen.com site.

Orion

Last edited by orion : 10-13-2004 at 09:21 PM.
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Old 10-13-2004   #13
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I agree! However, there is only one minor thing. If you are tailoring to the U.S. Hispanic and bilingual pages are created, then adding the W3C tags might confuse the engine.
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Old 10-13-2004   #14
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Not necessarily. It all depends the client desires.

The client is not interested in the Hispanic or bilingual market in USA, only in the local Spanish market in Puerto Rico.

As for confusing search engines with the W3C recommendations I must disagree. Check above keywords and derivative in most top search engines. The client has been holding those ranks for many years without any problem. I have similar examples with other clients.

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Old 10-13-2004   #15
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Hi, Nacho

I hope this info from the W3C help in some way. It applies to XHTML and HTML.

1. Why use the language attribute?

"Search engines can group or filter results based on the user's linguistic preferences. It is also common to use meta tags to specify keywords that a search engine may use to improve the quality of search results. When several meta elements provide language-dependent information about a document, search engines may filter on the meta elements, using associated language attributes, and display search results according to the language preferences of the user."

2. Specifying the language of content: the lang attribute

3. http://www.w3.org/TR/html401/struct/global.html#h-7.4.4 (Meta and search engines)

The W3C states,

"A common use for META is to specify keywords that a search engine may use to improve the quality of search results. When several META elements provide language-dependent information about a document, search engines may filter on the lang attribute..."

4. Check also, http://www.w3.org/TR/WD-html40-970708/html40.txt.

In a nutshell, the lang attribute improves accessibility, parsing and search quality by instructing the search engine to filter results. If a client is only interested in, let say, targeting a regional version of a search engine or directory; e.g., an index version in France, Puerto Rico, Mexico, etc, in my view, this should help.

True that there other reasons why my clients rank high, even in global indices (Google, Yahoo, MSN, etc).

From my experience I can tell that

1. poorly written search engines seem to have hard time with the lang attribute, international puntuation, and unicode entitites.
2. in some search engines, punctuation (e.g, accents, etc) can affect the relevance of a given term when the engine defaults to English.
3. the use of the lang attribute not necessarily help with global indices since it works almost like a language filter.


Orion

Last edited by orion : 10-13-2004 at 02:06 PM.
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Old 10-20-2004   #16
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Nacho
OK Jose, let's look at these categories for the U.S. Hispanic Market and see if anyone is really being successful here.

Dating
AutosIn this category, it is really disappointing to see the results. The opportunity is bigger than HUGE! Try these:

Google: autos familiares, autos de lujo, autos deportivos, camionetas (PPC is a little bit better here), camiones pickup, camionetas pickup (autobytel does a good job here).
Yahoo: autos familiares, autos de lujo, autos deportivos, camionetas, camiones pickup, camionetas pickup.

For both engines, the non-paid results are just pathetic, and the paid results (PPC) is a total shame even when there are cases where the ad is Spanish, but the landing page is English. Isn't this supposed to be one of the most lucrative commercial categories? Yikes, I'm really thinking about putting my own Autos-en-Espanol.com here.

Homes
  • I think I'm going to break out crying here !!!
  • ((((screaming to an empty canyon: where are the successfull businesses?????)))) Echo answers: (((there is none))) (((none))) (((none)))
I should buy Apartamentos-en-Espanol.com for this one I guess??? Specially when I search for "apartamentos en Los Angeles" in Yahoo. At least Superpages.com in Spanish does a good job on Google, but in reality results are no different.

So, I ask you, if no one is doing it does this mean that YOU should NOT go forward? or does this mean YOU could be TAKING ALL THE PROFITS of these markets?
You would be taking all the profits... and trust me they are there... we are doing really well with the Spanish market right now... and though it crosses to global... we do get good returns for US Hispanics as well.
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Old 11-12-2004   #17
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Thank you!

Nacho,

Thank you greatly for your contribution of the white papers and thanks to everyone else who has participated in this discussion. I'm shocked it has not received more responses. I've been a lurker on this board for several years, but I felt obligated to register and post in reponse to this thread.

An excellent point in the PDF is to understand the breakdown of the Hispanic market with regards to coutries of origin and immigrants vs. US-born Hispanics. As someone who has marketed exclusively to English-speaking US markets, I have much to learn.

Thanks again, and hopefully this bump will allow more people to see the thread and add to the discussion.
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Old 11-13-2004   #18
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Glad to help out

Here is a good list of more threads for your Hispanic market research:

Search Marketing en Espanol - This one will actually give you the statistics on how many are there in the total online Hispanic popultion.

Search Engine Optimizing Toward The Hispanic Community

Myth of the Hispanic Market

Top sites for latin america

Pros & Cons for Going Multi-Lingual

"Foreign" language keyword research

Should Search Engines adopt different results outside the U.S.?

Buena Suerte!!
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Old 11-13-2004   #19
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Nacho as per usual you come through with some great resources. I want to buy you dinner next time we are at a convention together.
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Old 11-22-2004   #20
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Question About googleadwords in Spanish

Hello Everybody,
I am new to the forum. I have been reading your messages and I found a great deal of help and guidance. Thank you!
One question:
I have been trying to add words to my existing accounts in google search. Everything works fine until I try to add words in spanish and try to obtain advertisement results in Google espanol. I do get results in google.com but not in google en espanol. When I log into my googleadwords through google en espanol, I go directly into my english account. My question is: do I have to have a different account for the google en espanol? Is there a reason why I can not get results in google en espanol?
Please help
pilar
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