After much confusion and frustration from multilingual site webmasters on how to properly use the hreflang element, Google announced new functionality to allow multilingual and multinational site owners to set the rel=”alternate” hreflang=”x” link annotation using XML sitemaps. This is a much better way of implementing it than telling webmasters to add hundreds of lines of code to their pages while simultaneously telling them to reduce lines of code. Help For Multiple Language Countries There are countries like Canada, Switzerland and Belgium that have multiple national languages and/or large populations that speak different languages resulting in companies creating specific language versions for these markets. Previously, we had no way to set both a country and languages since Webmaster tool’s Geographical Settings were for countries only. For example, Switzerland we could only tell Google that the German, French and Italian versions of the site were all related to Switzerland but not designate a language for them. With this new functionality, we now have the ability to designate a section of the site for the German speaking part of Switzerland and another part of the French speaking. We can easily do this by adding these entries to the XML sitemap or by…
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