International SEO Roundup – what are the differences between countries when developing their SEO?

Due to the new virus hitting all over the world, companies are stepping forward when investing in digital. Furthermore, digital marketers, concretely search engine optimisation professionals are currently experiencing heavy workloads.

No one has the perfect recipe for an outstanding SEO strategy, but it is clear that being up-to-date with new trends and algorithm updates is a must. Then, how are those search specialists dealing with the changing scenario, are there any common pathways to follow, to deliver a bespoke SEO strategy? Thus, at MintTwist we have decided to ask some of the top search engine professionals from all around the world, to help us have a clear idea of what is going on in the international SEO landscape. 

We asked them three key questions:

  • Top SEO factors that work in their country. Are there any quick wins that need to be implemented in the first three months?
  • What are the SEO tools that are most used in your country? Why do you use them?
  • Would you say companies in your country value the importance of SEO professionals to grow their business?

Oliver Brett, Senior SEO Manager at Screaming Frog – United Kingdom

  1. Following Oliver’s point of view, in the UK we often find that much of the top competition has already invested in link building, so it can be hard to find quick wins in terms of site authority. Often, the easiest wins are the simplest, such as updating page titles and H1s.
  2. His favourite tools are Sistrix, ahrefs, Google Analytics, Search Console, and Screaming Frog, of course!
  3. Focusing on how UK-based companies understand SEO, Oliver thinks that is a well-developed field with many people in agencies, in-house, and freelance positions.

BrightonSEO is here for a reason! We anticipate demand will only grow as companies divert their marketing budgets to digital in order to negate Covid in the coming year.

Oliver Brett, @oliverbrett 🇬🇧

Bruce Clay, owner and SEO expert at Bruce Clay – USA

  1. Bruce prioritises mainly on on-page technical, content, and architecture, speed, and fragments with specific 50-word answers. He explains that links are diminished, replaced by usability, and E-A-T(Expertise- Authoritativeness and Trustworthiness) becomes the most important. Moreover, he remarks on the importance that E-A-T currently has on the SEO landscape.

It is funny that when the only tool in your toolbox is a hammer, every problem looks like a nail. Most tools are reporting the same issues to a million users – we need unique deep analysis, so we write our own”

Bruce Clay, @bruceclayinc 🇺🇸

2. He believes that SEO is highly valued in the US.

3. Regarding their tools’ usage, they use about 50 different ones, mostly because

Emma Labrador, head of marketing and communication at OnCrawl – France

  1. For Emma Labrador, the top SEO factors in France are content optimisation, on-site technical maintenance, and internal linking. On the other hand, Emma also believes that it is vital to regularly check website health (tags, status codes, and load time).
  2. OnCrawl, her favourite tool, and is very popular in France. Majestic and Google Search Console are also a must.
  3. Moreover, SEO is becoming more relevant, as it is often taught at universities in marketing courses. Moreover, she remarks that most major companies have an SEO department now. Emma also believes that SEO has a bright future ahead of it.

We’ve been taking a closer look at our older posts to prune or improve many of them, depending on the traffic they bring in and their role in our global marketing strategy.

Emma Labrador, @emma_labrador 🇫🇷

Kristina Azarenko, SEO consultant and founder at Marketing SyrupCanada

  1. Talking about top SEO factors in Canada, Kristina admits that they are the same factors that work in other countries too. Relevancy, quality content, and optimised title tags are amongst those relevant win factors.
  2. Must-have tools are Screaming Frog, Google Mobile-Friendly tool, PageSpeed Insights, and Keywords Everywhere. She is also using the SEO Pro Extension that she released, which is becoming very popular across the SEO community now.

I’d say that there are companies with different levels of understanding SEO and thus its importance for their growth. It’s interesting but though I live in Canada, most of my clients are from the US.

Kristina Azarenko, @azarchick 🇨🇦

Canada city

Mordy Oberstein, liaison to the SEO community at Wix – Israel

It really comes down to knowing how to create authoritative content, and that means more than some sort of E-A-T checklist. It means excellent content!

Mordy Oberstein, @mordyoberstein 🇮🇱

  1. For Mordy, the most relevant part of SEO lies in content quality and relevance.
  2. His number one tool is, of course, Rank Ranger. DeepCrawl, Content King, and SEMrush are always on his list.
  3. For Oberstein, SEO focused strategies are becoming a thing in his home country.

Antonio López Tomás, country manager at SEMrush Spain & LATAM .Director SEO at – Spain

  1. Antonio thinks that there are no factors that work better in some countries than in others, as they are “generic for everyone”. However, there are three factors that he values when working on a project: architecture and indexing, content strategy, and link building.
  2. Top tools include SEMrush, Screaming Frog, and Google Search Console.
  3. In terms of companies recognising the role of SEO in Spain, Antonio believes that SEO is being recognised as a winning strategy.

As a result of the pandemic, SEO trends, searches and needs have taken a 4-year quantitative leap. Currently, agencies show a significant demand for SEO professionals.

Antonio López Tomás, @elblogdelseo 🇪🇸

Sean Si, founder at SEO HackerPhilippines

  1. In his own words, the top factors for Sean are content, links, and technical SEO. He believes that there are no real quick fixes, as you need to have content, technical SEO and links to have a winning SEO strategy.
  2. As the prior SEO experts, he cannot live without ahrefs, SEMrush, and Screaming Frog.
  3. Regarding the importance that companies are currently giving to the SEO industry and professionals, Sean believes that some companies are seeing this, while others don’t. (@seo_hacker 🇵🇭)

Sergey Aliokhin, community outreach manager at Visme – Ukraine

  1. The top SEO factors that better work in Ukraine are, following Sergey’s opinion, creating unique content to boost traffic, and improve backlink profile with building links. Mobile optimizations are also a must for him.
  2. For Sergey, the best SEO tool is ahrefs, as all SEO activity is based on this tool. It helps with exploring backlinks, analysing competitors, researching keywords, and developing a site audit. On the other hand, Respona is good for making the process of outreach automated.
  3. In his own words, Sergey believes that local Ukrainian companies do not understand the importance of SEO to its full extent. Moreover, he believes that business owners realised that organic traffic is far more valuable than paid traffic.

These companies are used to run their business online with the help of advertising mostly. Nevertheless, the tendency changes and more and more companies are SEO specialists.

Sergey Aliokhin, @sergey_aliokhin 🇺🇦

ukraine city

Marcin Szyszko, SEO manager at Subito – Italy

  1. Regarding the most popular SEO factors in Italy, we find brand awareness and technical SEO. On the other hand, Marcin also emphasises the importance that improving internal links has.
  2. Talking about the best tools, we find here another fan of ahrefs. Marcin believes that ahrefs it’s mature enough to provide answers for many SEO topics.
  3. In Italy, Marcin recognises that businesses understand the importance that developing SEO best practices has.(@in_bright_light 🇮🇹)

Koray Tuğberk GÜBÜR, Founder at Holistic SEO & Digital – Turkey

  1. For Koray, his most important SEO factor is semantic SEO and structured Search Engine principles. Moreover, the topical layer, topical authority, topical coverage, and conceptual hierarchy terms are important for a Semantic Search Engine.
  2. The most popular SEO tools in Turkey are Ahrefs, SEMRush, and Screaming Frog. He uses these tools because he believes they have the best market share in the industry.
  3. In terms of the understanding that Turkish businesses have of SEO, big companies do not have enough information on SEO.

You need to show that you have expertise on the subject with the “structured content network” that has been built on Search Intent and Google’s neural nets (sub-topics).

Koray Tuğberk GÜBÜR, @koraygubur 🇹🇷

Jonathan Gorham, co-founder at Engine Scout Digital Marketing – Australia

  1. In Australia, the most important SEO factors are high-quality content that matches search intent, relevant backlinks, and mapping the right keywords to specific landing pages.
  2. As previously seen, Jonathan’s favourite tools are ahrefs -to monitor backlinks and look at competitors’ backlinks, and for keyword research purposes. SEMrush – to perform keyword research and keyword position tracking; Surfer SEO – for On-page SEO fixes, and the Screaming Frog – to perform Technical SEO fixes.
  3. Jonathan thinks that some companies in Australia value SEO, while others still don’t. His team likes to educate their clients on the importance that SEO has. His top advice for getting started with SEO strategy is:

During the first three months, we look to update title tags, make sure we’re targeting the right keywords, and looking to fix any technical SEO issues that might be holding a website back.

Jonathan Gorham, @jonathan_gorham_ 🇦🇺

Miguel Rodríguez, CEO at SEO en México – Mexico

  1. Miguel’s favourite SEO win factors are related links, study the search intention and content that covers the intention of the user.
  2. Amongst his top tools, we find SEMrush, because it has greatly improved its audits and visibility section; KwFinder, because it shows us all the information we need for a keyword study; and Screaming Frog.
  3. Miguel believes that in Mexico you can find important sectors that do not know the importance of implementing a correct SEO strategy. Miguel believes that some of these companies do not understand the benefits that SEO can generate. (@seoenmexico1 🇲🇽)

Cuni Shimizu, founder at Edamame Digital Marketing – Japan

  1. Cunio emphasises keyword research as an important SEO strategy.
  2. As his favourite tool, we find ahrefs, as it seems to understand very well the Japanese language.
  3. When asking him about the conception of SEO that Japanese companies have nowadays, Cunio admits that this depends on the company.

It’s still important to understand searched keywords and searchers’ intent. Targeting the right keywords and implement the right on-page optimisation are also very important factors in his opinion.

Cuni Shimizu, @cunishimizu 🇯🇵

Japan city centre

Peter Karlsen, SEO specialist at Webamp – Denmark

  1. Quality content to target specific audiences would be the top SEO factor in Denmark. Peter believes that is vital to optimise content that matches their clients’ strategies. He also identifies getting backlinks as an important factor to rank higher within organic search results. Search intent would be the last factor they take into consideration.
  2. Peter’s favourite tools are Screaming Frog, as it helps with technical SEO analysis; Search Console to optimise for new keywords; ahrefs as he finds It useful to optimise keywords.
  3. In Demark, some companies are still not into SEO-strategies but understand that digital matters and they have accepted to target users online and increase their SEO strategy. (@peterkarlsen93 🇩🇰)

Vincent On, Founder at On Digitals, Vietnam

  1. For Vincent, link building is the most prominent SEO factor that helps a lot within the first three months.
  2. As his favourite tools, we find Sitechecker, which is relevant for on-page audits and to track keywords. In his opinion, the tool has support available and you can export reports very easily.
  3. Vicent On strongly believes that SEO is becoming a thing in Vietnam, as it is becoming a growing industry.
    ( Vincent On 🇻🇳)


We see that most of the SEO trends are exactly the same in all countries. If you want to succeed and execute a bespoke search engine optimisation strategy, you must keep yourself up-to-date with the latest trends. And do not forget to add your touch to the recipe!

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