As you might know from having visited MSEO.com, we have a fully staffed office in Hazmieh (Beirut), Lebanon. Our Lebanese team is in charge of the development for all of our Arabic SEO campaigns. Over the years of working with such a talented team of multilingual professionals (most of them speak English/French fluently as well), I have learned a lot about the “Arabic online world”.
Our Arabic SEO branch is extremely active within the Arabic IT communities. They exhibit this year at the GITEX 08 in Dubai, promoting our World Tour Seminars (I happen to be the speaker at those events/SEO workshops). Our next four events, in November 2008 and January 2009, will be held in Dubai, Abu Dhabi, Qatar, and Bahrain. I am not writing this in an effort to promote our SEO Seminars, but rather wishing to bring your attention to our targeted destinations: Gulf countries only. What’s going on with such geo-targeted marketing effort?
Well, over the past years, I have developed a personal friendship with Mr. Nadim Sarkis, who happens to be the Director of our branch in Beirut. Aside from being one of the utmost qualified professionals I have ever met in our line of industry, Nadim has truly introduced me to the Arabic online world: an online platform way too often misperceived by the rest of the world.
Getting involved with Arabic Search Engine Optimization has been a fruitful strategic move for MSEO.com (please visit the Arabic version of our website by clicking on the following link: http://www.mseo.com/ar ). It has also allowed me on a personal level to be introduced to a wealthy, educated, and courteous online platform! When covering all cultural and technical ramifications involved, marketing a website to the Arab online community often turns out to be the most profitable Global SEO action of all!
In September 2007, while visiting the GITEX in Dubai, I went on a helicopter ride to see what is, by far, the most incredible and unprecedented real estate development ever conceived by mankind. Like many, you might have seen various documentaries on Dubai, Abu Dhabi, and other Gulf “urban hotspots”. Anyway, my helicopter pilot conveyed the fact that over 60% of all the construction cranes in the world were present in Dubai (I confirmed such fact by researching on the internet). Perhaps you knew that already, but think about it this way: We are talking about the wealthiest group of individuals in the world who happen to depend almost 100% on imports...imports of goods...imports of services...but also imports of talent, technology, etc.
Arabic online search engines have greatly matured over the years, building the strongest and most efficient communication with the Arab online community. Of course, when starting to interact with Arab online business professionals, cultural ramifications need to be respected. I advise you to do a little research concerning business etiquette and other cultural “do’s and don’ts” when presenting your products and/or services on Arabic search engines. Most of all users who will find the Arabic version of your website will have the ability to communicate with you in English. However, when communicating with someone in Kuwait or Saudi Arabia, it is not “Hi, how’re you doing?” - The average casual American approach will not be welcome! Once again, the Arab online community is financially opulent and features a group of respectful and educated businessmen.
However, the Arabic online world is much more than the Gulf Region. It is the full MENA deal and more (MENA = Middle East & North Africa). From Egypt to Morocco, from Jordan to Lebanon, without forgetting the millions of Arabic native speakers elsewhere around the world, Arabic is by far an online platform I would recommend to anyone ready for a financially rewarding ride!!
Aside from business, when traveling through the Arab world, you will eat better – I mean, MUCH better – than in any country where English is the native tongue (and, no, I did not refer to the U.S. or the U.K. ... maybe I should not think so loud!). Okay! Better food, but also superior hospitality. We are speaking about the Orient and Oriental hospitality is definitely one notch above what we experience in the Western world.
Anyway, since I am at the stage of expressing my appreciation for such a sophisticated community, I will take this opportunity to conclude with the following statement: Our Lebanese people were the best we could find in the Arab world and, on a personal note, I will say that Lebanon also offers the best food of the Arab world. Honestly, the Lebanese rule in the kitchen...there is nothing like eating out in Beirut! I do realize that I should apologize for getting distracted from the Arabic SEO subject, but I just cannot think of my team in Lebanon without associating business with pleasure!!
Mathias Levarek, Ph.D.
SEO Consultant for http://www.mseo.com