Search is HOT for U.S. Hispanics

Jul 25, 2005 - 6:39 am 0 by

Recently I came across a statistic that I've been long waiting to see, it was published thanks to a recently released Advertising Age report named "HISPANIC FACT PACK: Annual Guide to Hispanic Advertising & Marketing 2005 Edition". See following table:


This table, which takes into account both English and Spanish speaking Hispanic users, demonstrates how #1, #2, #3, #4, and #7 are our dearly beloved SEARCH ENGINES! Oh YES! Hispanics love search! Here is the data to prove its impact. There are no other web properties that get higher visits than these. Search is an important tool for all people online (including Hispanics) to accomplish their daily needs. Whether it?s for shopping, research or knowing what?s new in entertainment, news, or a favorite recipe. The recipe for success is search for them. Then again, websites like eBay (#5), Amazon (#8) and Cnet (#10) could have received in large proportion of their traffic via a search results as they are highly optimized.

One more thing that grasps my attention, is the reach among each of these web properties. From these percentages seems to me that both Yahoo! and AOL have been doing a great job focusing on the Hispanic market. Most likely this is due to their Yahoo! en EspaƱol and AOL Latino advertising campaigns. Their marketing push has brought great rewards. Microsoft is not doing that bad. On the other hand, Google and Ask Jeeves must keep these numbers in mind and keep thinking of strategies to gain market share reach against its rivals. Google already taking action from its recent deal to power search results into the world wide web. However, "Donde esta el Mayordomo Jeeves?".

How can we (the search engine marketers) do for website owners to help accomplish growth in this market segment? There is so much content, especially Spanish content, that needs to be optimized so that search engines can understand it via their algorithms and point users in the most relevant direction. At the same time, I feel there is so much education still needed for search engine marketers to do it right.

From time to time, I come across SEMs that are *only doing translation* and applying the most typical SEO factors. This is a typical mistake when search engine optimizers or website owners only use machine translations. Seriously, it?s not that easy. Proper nouns need to be in the right sequence and verbs can be in a total different position from what a typical translation would provide. I believe it has to do more with the ?relevant position? and the ?keyword distribution? factors within the search engine?s algorithms.

Another example, the other day our consulting firm, iHispanic Marketing Group, came across a website that was optimized for a keyword phrase that removed the preposition in between the two primary keywords because they most likely got it from one of the typical keyword suggestion tools (ie. keyword1 en keyword2, such as ?restaurantes en Dallas?). Unfortunately, the tool most likely took the word ?en? as a stop word for this Spanish keyword and ruined the optimization partially. Search engine optimizers SHOULD NOT DO THAT when optimizing in Spanish. Search engines remove stop words as part of their tokenization process, but the stop words are important elements of natural language and most likely analyzed as part of the raw data.

Keep these things in mind and hope to see all of you interested to learn more in SES San Jose 2005 during the Spanish Language Search Marketing Tactics session (which is given in English).


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