One of the most frequently asked questions! Multilingual companies often run into trouble when trying to rank in Yandex with a subdomain or subdirectory of their strong .COM site. I heard this question at SEO conferences and from webmaster community.
So if you face problems with Yandex rankings, while your rankings in Google are great, these things are worth checking:
– Yandex does not like automatic redirects (e.g. if you display a certain language version based on visitor’s IP). Yandex has problems indexing such pages.
– Yandex is slower than Google when it comes to new sites and pages. If for Google it takes 1-2 days to index a new page and show it in SERPs, for Yandex it will take at least 1-2 weeks, and the page will not appear high. It can take up to 1-2 months to get a new page to the top 10, even when the competition is low.
– Google is better with finding and indexing pages, especially when it comes to big sites with complicated linking structure. The situation when Yandex sees 1000 pages of your website and Google sees 2500 is not uncommon.
– Yandex and Google index Flash and Java script in a different way. I have no experience with this, but it is a common knowledge and it can cause ranking problems.
– You choose to create language versions as subdomains or subdirectoris counting that they will receive a lot of strength from the .COM site, right? PR will flow and it will be easier to rank. Right. But your .COM site is not an authority for Yandex (in most cases, anyway). It is not indexed properly, does not have TIC (thematic index of citation), therefore no credit will be received and it will be much harder to get rankings in Yandex then it Google.
– To rank in Yandex you need links from sites in Russian. While backlinks in English might help a German site to rank in Google, in Russia this will not happen. We are dealing with Yandex, a local search engine with a limited ability to index and evaluate foreign sites. So no cheating here! Want Yandex rankings – get Russian links.
There are many more small things that can result in big differences between Google and Yandex rankings. I will be returning to this topic in the coming posts.