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WordPress locale settings are hurting SEO (we have proof)

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  • #9643 Reply

    By default most WordPress themes will just copy whatever your language is under WP Admin >> Settings and put that in the lang HTML tag attribute. But after several months of testing Google SERPS for we have proof this is hurting our ranking in many English language search queries from around the world

    #9644 Reply

    Currently our site is set to <html lang="en-US"> and this means our ranking for US users and IP addresses (e.g. VPN) on is pretty good for many queries. But even if you are using from another country and your IP address is not USA you can see major drop in rankings, even when inside English speaking countries like Australia.

    We opened a thread on WPSE about this, and many Automattic-friendly developers immediately down-voted the question and scolded us

    #9645 Reply

    The truth remains, this WordPress-generated lang tag is hurting us.

    Many SEO-savvy web developers use a language-only tag without the region/locale suffix attached, and in nearly every case we tested, their rankings were improved from various countries and IP addresses with English SERP cases.

    #9646 Reply

    e.g. <html lang="en"> outranks <html lang="en-US"> in many cases, even when the keywords or titles of the page are WORSE…..

    #22212 Reply

    Google has explicitly said multiple times they don’t use html lang tags. They use hreflang for differentiating between multilingual sites, combined with an algorithm.

    Their goal is to sell ads. You sell ads by creating a better search experience and attracting users. So why would they tell people they don’t use an attribute only to penalise them for it? other than the joy of playing mind games, there would be no benefit in doing that.

    SlickStack is awesome. All the SEO misinformation not so much though.

    #22704 Reply

    SlickStack is awesome. All the SEO misinformation not so much though.


    why you guys hate Rank Math, my favorite Indian spyware 😭😭😭

    #22731 Reply

    >> uses Rank Math
    >>> believes what Google says

    leans back. takes sip of coffee. laughs out loud.

    #23087 Reply

    I don’t believe Google, I believe that Google does what’s in their best interests.

    lol anyway brb im gonna powering up my SEO with some HTML lang tags!!

    Years of doing SEO and it was just the lang tags all along 😩😩👌🏼 sips coffee

    How could I have been so blind to the great lang tag conspiracy 😭 c u all in position #1

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Reply To: WordPress locale settings are hurting SEO (we have proof)

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