Chinese SEO and Search Marketing Services in Chinese - Webcertain

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Chinese Language Search Marketing

Chinese - Mammoth Mandarin Leads The Way


The Chinese language: an introduction

Chinese is simply the biggest language in the world - providing that you treat each of its mutually unintelligible varieties as dialects and not languages. In total, there are twice as many speakers as English as a mother tongue language - and it has one of the most ancient character sets. These days Mandarin is considered to be the 'standard' although Chinese has many dialects. The major Chinese dialects - other than Mandarin are:

  • Wu - 80 million speakers - Shanghai area
  • Cantonese - 60 million speakers - extreme southern provinces
  • Min - 60 million speakers - Fukien province
  • Xiang - 40 million speakers - Hunan province
  • Hakka - 30 million speakers - Szechwan, Kwangtung, Kwangsi, Fukien provinces and Taiwan

How many speakers are there of the Chinese language?

1.2 billion people speak some form as Chinese as their mother tongue. The Mandarin dialect is spoken by some 960 million people - mainly in China.

What Chinese language issues do I need to watch out for?

Targeting Chinese is very demanding. The character set of the language was developed over 4000 years ago and was one of the world's first written scripts. The simplest way to think of Chinese characters is to see them as representing syllables - although the reality is a little more complex - but the language is NOT pictographic as some people perceive.

Two main Chinese character sets are in use today:

  • Simplified - introduced brought in 1955 to improve Chinese language literacy by reducing the number of characters.
  • Traditional - still used by rejectors of traditional in areas such as Taiwan, Singapore and Hong Kong. Chinese dialects are tonal in nature - which means the similar sounding words (homophones) - are distinguished only by the rising or falling tone of the speaker.

Particular issues for search marketers include dealing with the wide variety of input methods which Chinese speakers use to interact with computers and the web which includes:

  • Pinyin
  • Double pinyin
  • Wubi (various varieties)
  • Contextual character suggestion and selection methods
  • Handwritten characters with electronic recognition

The above methods have a direct impact on search marketing - and there are over 15 different methods of input.

Which major search engines are important to Chinese speakers?

Although remaining as the most dominant search engine, Baidu’s popularity has plummeted over the last year, going from 68% to 49% market share. This has been mainly due to users switching to newcomer 360 Search, who now enjoy a significant slice of the Chinese search pie, with 33% market share. Sogou Search and Google China also have some traction, with 6% and 10% market share respectively.

Chinese SEO, PPC and Online PR Services from Webcertain

Improve your presence in Chinese search engines with Webcertain's Chinese search marketing services. Reach your audience in Chinese through multilingual SEO, multilingual PPC and Chinese online PR. With Chinese native speakers and local cultural knowledge of China, Webcertain will give your online campaigns the boost they need to achieve success in the Chinese market.

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