The Paradox Of Hispanic SEO

Despite the rise of social media, content marketing, mobile marketing and other digital marketing tactics, SEO is still critical. In fact, a study published in Search Engine Land found that 51% of all visitors to both B2B and B2C websites are driven by organic search.

As more and more brands launch owned websites to address the booming Hispanic digital market, the wise ones will invest in optimizing their websites for the Hispanic audience. Read on to learn about the opportunities and the paradox of Hispanic SEO. 

Hispanic SEO and Language

First, it is important to know that Hispanics use search engines in large numbers to search for products and services. A recent report by Google indicates that 86% of Digital Hispanics use search to gather information about a purchase. What’s more, 79% search at least daily and 68% of those who search, search on their mobile devices.



So in what language do they search? The same Google report states that a full two-thirds of Digital Hispanics (across all language preferences) have used Spanish to look for information using a search engine in the past month. Digging deeper, Google reports that the fastest growing Spanish language search categories include retail, telecom, health, skincare, food, auto and beauty.

This data is clear. Marketers looking to target online Hispanics should execute Spanish language search engine optimization.

Are you ready to dive into Hispanic SEO? Here are some things to keep in mind.

Hispanic SEO Competition and Volume

Play around with English and Spanish keywords in the Google Adwords Keyword Planner tool and you will quickly see that, for the most part, Spanish keywords have less competition and less volume when compared to equivalent English keywords. Because search volumes are relatively low in Spanish, marketers must optimize their sites for a large number of Spanish keywords, including long tail keywords, to generate significant traffic volume. The good news is that because competition is low, ranking for a large number of Spanish keywords is relatively easy. 

You should also be aware of the paradox of Hispanic SEO.

Hispanic SEO and International Traffic

The Internet knows no borders and this is especially evident with Hispanic SEO. Well-optimized Spanish language U.S. Hispanic websites will inevitably receive a large amount of traffic from outside the U.S. This happens because search engines will index these Spanish sites and serve them in response to Spanish language searches regardless of the country of such search. 

To illustrate this point, below are some U.S. Hispanic sites and their percentage of international traffic according to

  • - 64% International traffic
  • - 62% International traffic
  • - 62% International traffic
  • - 60% International traffic

For marketers with U.S. Hispanic-focused budgets, the steady flow of international traffic might be concerning. What do I think? Don’t worry about it. 

If you are getting international Spanish language traffic, it means your site is well optimized for search engines. That, in turn, means you will be getting qualified U.S. Hispanic visitors, which is the point in the first place. Getting visitors to your website from Latin America can be good. U.S. Hispanics are deeply connected to their countries of origin through family and friends, many of whom visit and may potentially immigrate to the U.S.

2 comments about "The Paradox Of Hispanic SEO".
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  1. cara marcano from reporte hispano, May 14, 2015 at 4:24 p.m.

    A lot of US Hispanic business-owners are interested in English-language #SEO because of this volume issue (more search volumen in English) and because they are targeting English-speaking targets as well as Spanish-speaking potential clients. This creates all kinds of interesting issues because many Latino business-owners in the US are not fully fluent in English. Helping them in these areas can be very rewarding use of one's marketing and media skill set for sales and job growth in the US economy at this time. 

     A lot of Spanish-preferred Hispanics in the US do their banking, for example, and a lot of their Internet work in English for a variety of reasons -- all fascinating ! And some bilingual folks (myself!) who prefer English opt-in for Spanish just because we can and we like to keep it interesting for the data-collectors ; )   So what you opt-in for or search in might not always be the best indicator of what you actually prefer or what is your dominant, first, L1 language ! 

    Fun times !  Thank you Lee this is a great piece !  ¡GRACIAS!

  2. cara marcano from reporte hispano, May 14, 2015 at 4:36 p.m.

    Doesn't this also sort of beg the question: Where is the coveted US #Latino? If these stats are correct we are saying that the majority of folks on and are NOT US Latinos?! Love to kick this around with some of you for best content and best media plans to drive sales with US Hispanics! ~ http://www.

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