How to SEO & SEM your Russian sites

What are the differences in Yandex and Google Russian search engine optimization

There’s been pretty much of Russian SEO professional conclusions on this topic. The information often inconsistent as the development of mentioned Search Engines continues. I wasn’t able to find some comparison table for this topic. Many Russian SEO specialists consider that a good site itself will be identical to move to a top both in search engines. But life shows that it’s just not going that way. At last, I have collected enough statistics to draw my own conclusions.

yandex vs google

First, we need to answer a question: what is this information for? It is not a secret that in Russia Google is used by more advanced users. As a result, there is a much smaller CTR for PPC campaigns. Here is a real example: my income from 1 000 AdSense ad shows from Yandex are twice as big then from Google.

I have revealed the influence of the following factors:

1. Internal link building. Influences both search engines, after a publication of a new post with anchor link a refer page go up  in SERP. But in Google the effect is much stronger. To reach Google top with low frequency keywords just with internal link building is very simple.

2. External links. The situation is completely opposite. With purchase of links, placing external articles for a keyword sends them forward in Yandex much better, than in Google.

3. Landing page relevance. All metrics (time on a site, page view, bounce rate) are identical. But there is much more traffic from promoted keywords in Google. And from Yandex there is a lot of traffic from small frequency phrases found somewhere in content – and this visitors much better stay on site! Bottom line – Yandex much more sensitive with landing page and site relevance.

4. Keywords in titles. For Google placing keywords in landing page title as close as possible to the start is very important. Yandex seems like do not account title at all, the best place for it is H1 tag.

5. Page images. Google likes them more. Though, Image search traffic is really small, so it is not that important.

6. Domain trust. The first 3-4 months of domain life a huge difference in favor of Google. Then it disappears. Same concerns new pages.

7. Word declension. Google appreciates direct keyword occurrence, Yandex – opposite, it takes much more word declensions of all kinds. This comes from a lot of experiments.

8. Page content length. I haven’t seen any direct influence. But there is an indirect one: a bigger content page grows natural backlinks better, and has more keywords from content. And this is a very big plus for Yandex. My metrics prove it too: post pages with bigger content getting much more traffic from Yandex, then from Google.

9. Site ratings. Google PR influences SERP position stronger than Yandex CY. Statistically when Yandex updates site’s CY keyword frequency grow. With PR grow, a number of search term transitions grow very strong.

10. Traffic stability. A graph of Google traffic is very stable, while Yandex makes a lot of changes and experiments: CY updates, algorithms change much more often. A normal site can leave Yandex tops SERP without any distinct reason. And pretty often will not come back there without letter to Yandex. This leads on to much higher traffic stability from Google.

11. Keyword length. The longer the keyword the easier it is to promote in Yandex. This follows Yandex love to keyword declension. The longer the search term the more word combinations there is. This leads to bigger amount low-frequency in search terms.


Other influence factors which I cannot clear up at this moment:

1. Backlink quality. Links can be from positive reputation resources – comments, bookmarks, profiles, articles. Or purchased links from crapsites or other link selling sites. Any filters or pessimisations never noticed.

2. Text formatting. Keyword tagging or other formatting do not show any difference in Yandex-Google SERP.

3. Code quality and design. Any changes in code quality or site design do not influence Yandex-Google SERP

4. Anchor text. It is common that link anchors should look exactly like keywords. There is also a need to dilute direct keyword input with common words like “here, at this link” etc. When I was getting natural backlinks to my pages without any good anchor text this page moved up in SERP in Google just like it did in Yandex.

The bottom line:

Russian SEO for Yandex can be pretty effective , of course there should be a separate marketing budget. The best effect will be given by purchasing links with GoGetLinks or placing of articles in Miralinks. Content can be bought on Advego. Good quality copyright there will cost starting from $1,00 / 1000 symbols. The most part of keywords should be used with declination. Keyword length: the longer – the better.

SEO for Russian Google is pretty possible without any investments. What you pay with is time. The tools to use are social bookmark submittion, comments, article directories, forums and social network submittion. Article length should start from 1000 symbols. A need for smart onsite link building. The most keywords should show up exactly as you need. Keyword length should not be long.

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