x-default hreflang for int'l pages here

3 comments

"The new x-default hreflang attribute value signals to our algorithms that this page doesn’t target any specific language or locale and is the default page when no other page is better suited. For example, it would be the page our algorithms try to show French-speaking searchers worldwide or English-speaking searchers on google.ca."

http://googlewebmastercentral.blogspot.de/2013/04/x-default-hreflang-for-international-pages.html

I haven't tried this yet, but a friend has and says it works like a champ. Nice addition!

Comments

at second glance...

Now I'm wondering exactly what we get out of this...I've been just putting language/region specific hreflang's on pages that needed it, and nothing on the rest. So maybe I'm missing something, but I don't see what this really does. x-default is doing the same thing as the nothing, no?

A more appropriate solution...

Historically, we had to play with a little fire using the canonical tag to make sure there was a "default" selection, but I assume that presented some problems to Google, hence this new alternative. I haven't fooled around with it yet, but it seems like an obvious solution that ought to have been in place since day 1. I wish Google would think through their specs a little more before releasing them into the wild.

The do tend to think things to death...

I never felt that it was really playing with fire. I just used specific hreflang attributes on the necessary pages and nothing on the rest. I admit, the first time I did a multi-lingual site, I was unsure if the -es or -fr on a few pages might cause the rest of the site to be seen for those languages too. Once I saw that was safe, I had no more concerns and never an issue.

I never had occasion to do a single site in several languages, though, so that might have presented different issues.

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