You absolutely can have a Guelph business rank overseas, but it’s not as easy as you may think. First of all, if you have a .ca website then you are going to have your work cut out for you. I would recommend buying a .com, .net, .org, or .info for this fight. The fact of the matter is a business in Guelph quite often NEEDS to rank overseas! If you have a hotel in Guelph then a lot of your search queries will be coming from overseas and you need to be ready for this. Make sure you have an extension that lists your prices in Canadian dollars, US dollars, Euros, Pounds, Aussie dollars.. you get the drift. A lot of shopping carts offer this. It’s just a matter of changing a few settings and bingo your site is ready to accept foreign transactions. Think of it like this – if you are buying flights in the UK from Canada would you be more inclined to go with the price listed in Canadian Dollars or British pounds? Of course you are going to choose Canadian dollars because you are more familiar with that.
If your site is powered by a CMS like Joomla or wordpress there are modules you can install to give you currency conversion capabilities.
How many languages is your website available in? If someone from Italy is searching for hotels in Guelph for when they plan to visit Guelph in the summer, would your site that is available in Italian rank better in Google Italia than your competitor down the road whose hotel website is only available in English? I think so! These are some great tips so ring your web developer up right now and run these past him.
On a personal note I have spent the past 10 years travelling the world ranking websites in foreign countries. In 2009 I created a Rugby website with the intention of getting it to rank in one of the biggest markets in the world… New Zealand! The website is hosted in Utah. As of today I am the only non-New Zealand rugby site ranking in the top 50. Not only that, but it is now front page for the phrase ‘NRL’ which is searched 110,000 times a month in New Zealand. Today it jumped to 4th position, overtaking the New Zealand herald which is New Zealand’s national newspaper. The only sites beating it are Wikipedia and the NRL’s official website. The equivalent to this would be like having a website in Fiji and getting it to rank 4th in Canada for NHL behind the official website and Wikipedia. For those unfamiliar with the lay of the land, nobody beats official websites and Wikipedia, the site is as high as it will go.
Why am I saying this? Because in a blog post a few weeks back I spoke of how important targeted link building is and that links generated in the wrong way can actually be detrimental to your websites rankings. If you own a website in Guelph I can’t stress how important it is to not outsource your work to someone in India. I have seen businesses complain to me that they are ranking great in India, but that their rankings in the search engines where they wanted to rank, eg Canada and Italy, have fallen off the map. Pay someone who is going to spend the time to cater to your sites demands and don’t go cheap on link building.
In conclusion, YES you can rank overseas, BUT it takes time, and can only happen with the right person driving your SEO. I made mistakes myself, but it was only through trial and error over the course of years that I was able to master the art of ranking overseas.