SEO in Japan

Basic wording and use of language in Japanese is different from Western equivalents. The sentence structure, meaning of words and common expressions are unique to Japan, which is why direct translations of websites often do not work for SEO in Japan. The aspects of Japanese culture greatly influence the way visitors perceive and understand the content of your website.

Sakura Linkage use native Japanese language speakers together with digital marketing specialists to develop an ongoing SEO approach that provides consistent and results by improving your search rankings and driving your organic traffic.

Our Japanese SEO experts have experience in a wide range of industries to help you overcome Japan’s languages and cultural complexities.

Website Content and SEO in Japan

Your website content is vital to increase your brand’s awareness and improving your conversion rates. Many companies do not provide their Japanese customers with enough information on their websites as attention to detail is very important when they are searching for your product or service.

The Unique Challenges of Marketing in Japan

Using machine translation to create your content, marketing materials or videos will produce poor results. Only skilled, native Japanese translators and copywriters will possess the required understanding of the linguistic and cultural details to create an accurate translation, as the vast number of characters in Japanese presents a serious challenge when translating marketing content.

The Complexities of Japanese Characters

As an example, websites aimed at Children will often use hiragana and katakana, while businesses seeking to appear traditional will use mainly kanji symbols.

Complications are caused by the trend of using of Latin characters on Japanese websites as sometimes it can pay to use Latin characters when translating marketing materials, particularly when targeting young people.

The words from the different Japanese languages are usually considered the same on search engines, although the results are often different. In search engine optimisation, it is important to choose the right keyword in the most used character set.

As a point of note, Japanese characters should not be included in URL or image names. Only Latin characters should be used.

Regarding the number of characters in a website page, the top-ranked pages in Japan have an average number of Japanese characters of about 4,000 to 5,000, which translates to about 1,600 to 2,000 words in English.

Use of Keywords on Japanese Websites

Understanding the keywords that your Japanese customers are searching for when they are looking for lead generation is essential to ensure that you come out at the top of Japanese search results.

Often many foreign owned companies will take the keywords they use in Western countries and use them to Japan.

Good results are unlikely using this tactic. That is because, like many other markets in the world, Japanese business types have their own keywords that people use when searching for new products and services.

The Japanese language

All can be possibly used within the same paragraph or within the same sentence. Hiragana, katakana, and kanji can also be laid out horizontally or vertically, typically in banners.

In the logographic kanji language, a few characters could already contain a lot of meaning compared to a Western alphabet. For Westerners, these Japanese characters may seem cluttered and confusing, however, they enable the Japanese people to process a lot of information inside a short amount of time.

Also, the Japanese writing system also doesn’t include italics or capital letters which limits the possibility to add the emphasis which is possible in Latin alphabets. Japanese website designers overcome this by using graphic text.

Additionally, there is a lack of web fonts in Japanese because each font requires thousands of characters to be individually designed, so graphics are used instead of plain text to display non-standard typefaces.