Sunday, March 25, 2007

International Google Searching

Here is a neat little trick I came across that allows you to make Google display the search results as if you were searching from an different country.

See, with the Googles adwords program, advertisers can choose to display their ads to only certain countries, thus eliminating wasted clicks. If your business can only service people in Australia, what good is having your adverts displayed to those in Belgium, right ?

So, whilst doing some "strategic industry research" for On Hold Advertising I wanted to try and find some proactive international on hold companies (read: overseas adword advertisers) I could contact and create some strategic marketing alliances with (more on that technique in another post). But given I am located in Australia, its not that easy...

However what I discovered is that by adding the code '&gl=us' to the end of a searches url, it will display those results as if searched from that country.

For example, if I search 'messages on hold' from Australia I get the results and adwords from Australian companies that have added 'messages on hold' to their list of keywords. And the url that is generated is:

http://www.google.com.au/search?q=messages+on+hold&sourceid=navclient-ff&ie=UTF-8&rls=GGGL,GGGL:2006-44,GGGL:en



Now by adding the code &gl=us to the end of this string in the browsers address bar I get the results as if I was in the US.

http://www.google.com.au/search?q=messages+on+hold&sourceid=navclient-ff&ie=UTF-8&rls=GGGL,GGGL:2006-44,GGGL:en&gl=us


Neat trick to see what the pro-active businesses in your industry are doing online...

If you want to do this for other countries here are Googles Country Codes.


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