SEO and SEM for Russian search engines

Where to find your Russian keywords?

The basics:

When creating keyword lists for your American, German or French sites, you turn to Google for keyword suggestions. But what do you do in Russia?

Google is not very good with Russian semantics, besides the amount of searchers in is not that high. Is keyword data reliable? Who is using Google? Can it help to find good keywords to get traffic from Yandex? Well well.. Google keyword suggestion tool is good, however I recommend to use Yandex Keyword tool as a primary source of ideas.

Continue reading…

Quotation index – a Page Rank of Yandex

This is the first post of the series “10+ things to know before you start”.  I decided to create this category because although Yandex works in a similar way to Google, there are several Yandex-specific factors, which you must consider when doing your Yandex SEO.

Quotation index is one of them.

Quotation index is a grade of importance given by Yandex to your website (similar to Google’s PR). It does not affect your rankings, but shows how trusted your site is from Yandex point of view.

The scale of quotation index is very broad. It can vary from 0 to 150 000 =) And there is no correlation with Google PR whatsoever. Good private sites usually have quotation index from 150 till 1000, major newspapers and TV channels’ sites – between 1000 and 10 000. Continue reading…

Yandex will show more Yandex.Direct links above organic search results

Yandex.Direct is AdWords of Yandex. It works almost the same way and looks very similar.
This week Yandex has started to show up to 3 sponsored links above organic search results, while before the maximum amount of paid ads was 2. Yandex claims that this will affect only the most competitive keywords, i.e. not more than 2% of all queries.

More sponsored links in Yandex SERPs

More sponsored links in Yandex SERPs

According to Internet audience is not very fond of increased amount of paid listings. A large amount of people have screens with resolution lower than 768px (e.g. netbooks users) and cannot see organic search results at all.

In blogs and forums Yandex is being compared with Chinese Baidu, where all 10 top results can be paid listings =)

Yandex calendar can be shared now!

Yandex calendar

Yandex calendar

Looks familiar? Looks like Google Calendar? It is generally very hard to find a feature on Yandex, which Google is missing!

Before you could manage your agenda in Yandex Calendar if you had a Yandex account. Now you can also create shared calendars to show your scheduled events to your friends or business contacts! The new feature was announced yesterday on Yandex company blog.

Very convenient, as we’ve all known for a while =)

Why Russian Search?

Being “forced” to work with a number of Russian clients due to my bilingual nature, I have been learning about Russian search during the last two years. I have come to realize that being as wild and confusing as it is, Russian SEO is incredibly fun.

First of all, it is all about Yandex. Yes, Yandex – a local search engine kicking Google’s ass a big time!

Yandex holds a market share of about 60%, makes hundreds millions of dollars in revenue and provides a broad range of online services (such as email accounts, free hosting, PPC advertising network, maps, news, weather, dictionaries, and many others).It is 29th site in Alexa Top 100. It is default search provider in Russian version of FireFox. It even sells branded souvenirs =) !

It might seem that Yandex is a Google in 2006’s clone (which it is to some extent.. well.. to a large extent, actually), but yet, it is very different.

I find it amazingly interesting. And I want to spread the word. So I’ve started a blog about Russian search engine optimization.

Welcome to!