There are a number of common country and language errors that may seem correct but are actually wrong and will give an error by the search engines.

Using the Country Code “UK” for the United Kingdom  

In the example below, the site was using “la” to designate this as their Latin America Site.  While fine in the subdirectory, using it in the HREFLang element means something entirely different.

<link rel=”alternate” hreflang=”en-UK” href=”http://www.mysite.com.com/en-uk”>

The HREFLang syntax is saying “en” representing the language of the site as “English” and “UK” which is the Country code for the “Ukraine” – the correct code for the United Kingdom is GB so this entry is incorrect.

Using the Country Code “LA” for Latin America  

In the example below, the site was using “la” to designate this as their Latin America Site.  While fine in the subdirectory, using it in the HREFLang element means something entirely different.

<link rel=”alternate” hreflang=”es-LA” href=”http://www.mysite.com.com/es_la”>

The HREFLang syntax is saying “en” representing the language of the site as “Spanish” and “LA” representing the region of the language which is the Country code for “Laos” – there is NOT a code for Latin America so this is incorrect.  In this case, we suggest you set the /es-la site to Represent Multiple Countries of a region.  In this case, one of the countries in Latin America.  This takes care of the alternative URL issue and allows you to designate this site to multiple counties.   You can do this easily by replicating countries using our HREF Builder XML site map’s functionality vs. bloating your pages by adding multiple entries in the page.

 

 

Creating Country Codes to Fit Business Verticals

Every once in a while we see companies try to make their own country or language codes to fit business verticles.  In this case, we see Volvo trying to convert their Diplomat and Military divisions into countries to map them in HREFLang

 

July 30, 2018

Mistake – Incorrect Country or Language Codes

There are a number of common country and language errors that may seem correct but are actually wrong and will give an error by the search engines. Using the Country Code “UK” for the United Kingdom   In the example below, the site was using “la” to designate this as […]
July 28, 2018

Mistake – Too Many HREFLang Elements in a Page

While there is not any set limit of the number of HREFLang Elements you can have in your pages, having many of theme defeats the purpose of much of the other page speed optimization you are doing.  However, there are reasons to use them in the page so please review […]
July 28, 2018

Mistake – Uploading URL’s with Errors

Within HREFLang Builder our main project “view” screen and export will show you how many URL’s are included for each country as well as any errors.  This is a great way to monitor consistency between counties. In this example, nearly every country had a different number of URL’s in addition to […]
July 28, 2018

Mistake – Using Protocol-Relative URL’s

Protocol-relative URL’s are a URL format that is often used by those leveraging CDN’s to allow the browser to pick the protocol. This is great when you have a mix of secure and non-secure elements on the page. The browser can mix and match them. This is an example of […]