The understanding of chinese
Baidu is a Chinese search engine, made by the Chinese, and use by the Chinese. In the beginning, Baidu was better to read the Chinese characters. What is complicated with Chinese characters is that a word is generally a set of 2 characters and there is no space between words. Baidu for a long period of time had one step ahead on its enemy Google, on the language.
Baidu also used that in terms of communication. Baidu understands the chinese people.
Collaboration with the government
Baidu still has a close cooperation with the chinese government and respect the rules of censorship. Baidu regularly censored results, pornographic content but also articles which don’t agree with the politic of the government.
Regularly, we see some new-censored keywords, such as “Ferrari” referring to the scandal of one of the son of the member of the government. More information about the censorship of Ferrari here.
Google has more time to collaborate. Very early Google was the victim of Chinese censorship, which has benefited the Chinese competitor.
They tried some buzz in 2009, a fake exit at Hong Kong, which depleased the chinese government. Now, Google.cn redirects to .com.hk and is slow and regularly inaccessible from mainland China.
Now Google.com.hk respects the rules of the censorship and censored the same results as Baidu.
Baidu the plagiarist
If Google is a great innovator, Baidu is famous for its copies. The chinese giant of the Internet has indeed a lot of copies to its record.
- Yahoo Answers = Baidu Zhidao
- Google Actu = Baidu Actu
- Google Maps = Baidu Maps
- Google Shopping = Baidu Shopping
- Baidu tries to copy Sina Weibo
- Baidu has its own knowledge field and needs the population to develop itself, contrary to Google which will try to surprise everybody with innovations.
- Wikipedia = Baike I let you see the work
In an easy way, Google research to have the best results contrary to Baidu wants to earn the maximum amount of money possible. I explain myself.
Google will encourage the sharing of information, unique content, relevance of information and diversity of sources.
Baidu will always put forward its network of sites. Baike first, Baidu Zhidao second and Baidu Tieba (Baidu forum) is third in generalizing a bit. On commercial requests, the first 11 results of Baidu PPC (pay per click)
Baidu is selfish and focused on cash flow. The price of a click on Baidu is also very high, 4 times more than Google.com.hk
Baidu the chinese VS Google.com.hk more international
Baidu make SEO in priority to Chinese websites, and reference a few foreign websites. While Google.com.hk will take everything into account.
The different techniques
- Host in China: Baidu gives a big bonus to websites hosted in China, Google no.
- Baidu takes into account the meta description, while Google less (or not)
- Baidu does not take social links into account (except its own forums), Google will do it more.
- Baidu will influence with hands some results, while Google not (even if it’s a Google Bombing).
- Baidu gives a priority to the homepage, Google not so much.
- Baidu didn’t develop copy Penguin or Panda, now it’s the party of backlinks.
- Baidu appreciate the repetition of keywords… Google make a penalty on it.
- Black hat techniques of the 2000’ work very well on Baidu, a little bit less on Google.
To conclude… how to work on the SEO of your website on Baidu.
- You have to have a chinese logic, have everything in chinese, hosted in China.
- A politic of chinese backlinks only
- Be careful on the website, no forbidden words.
- Be really aggressive on acquisition of links
- Try to position yourself on less competitive keywords to get a chance to appear on the first pages (without ads).
- Set up a limited campaign of Pay Per Click, to get a bonus of Trustrank (yes it exists in China).
You may have see, I’m not a fan of the “Baidu” technology but I understand it. We can criticize this search engine, but know that the SEO is really hard to reach the first webpages because there is a big competition in China.
I am one of the few foreigners able to understand Baidu and act effectively on SEO sites in Chinese on Baidu, with my Chinese Partner.
Baidu is the favorite search engine of Chinese people today, but there is a strong wave of dispute from the Chinese geek community on Baidu. I think the Baidu empire is not ready to fall. There is now no serious challenger to rival.
The new search engine Qihoo maybe … who knows!