Search Engine Optimization Changes in China
Google has made a decision to no longer censor search results on its Chinese search engine, which may have a direct impact on search engine optimization in China. Many expected that Google would pull their services out of China. However, Google plans on continuing its operations within China. Google will wait on the Chinese governments decision as to whether operating off a Hong Kong domain —as opposed to the main Chinese domain—will allow Google to get around China’s censorship rules.
Google announced in January that it would not censor its search results any longer, shortly after an attack on the businesses infrastructure. Google never directly blamed the government of China but it was widely believed that Google felt the government of China was either sanctioned the attacks or was directly involved.
Google announced that it wanted to talk to the government of China to examine the possibility of continuing operations—without censoring—in China. On March 22, 2010 Google stated that it would no longer censor its search engine services that were aimed at the people of China. However, it appears as if those services have been closed. If you try to connect to Google services in China, you get redirected to a different domain. Here is a statement from Google’s blog post:
So earlier today we stopped censoring our search services—Google Search, Google News, and Google Images—on Google.cn. Users visiting Google.cn are now being redirected to Google.com.hk, where we are offering uncensored search in simplified Chinese, specifically designed for users in mainland China and delivered via our servers in Hong Kong. Users in Hong Kong will continue to receive their existing uncensored, traditional Chinese service, also from Google.com.hk.
These changes to Google’s search services in China will have a direct impact on search engine optimization in China.
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