what do you need to know?
France is the fourth largest country in Europe with over 65 million inhabitants. About 91% of them have access to the Internet. These two sentences alone make us treat the French seriously in terms of expansion of our business. If we add to this the information that each day the French spend on average 5 hours and 40 minutes online, it is not surprising that this is the 6th largest e-commerce market in the world!
The most common way to browse the web is via phone, with 91% of French owning a smartphone and 83% a PC. Mobile phones are dominated by Android (71%), which is responsible for three times more web traffic than its Apple competitor iOS (27%).
What do the French do on the web? Or put another way, what do they search for and for what purpose do they connect to the Internet? Let’s see:
The 3rd place was taken by social media, which is actively used by 60% of the French, giving us a total of 39 million people. Which social media are the most popular?
The clear leader is Facebook, where nearly 7 in 10 French people have an account and use it actively. An interesting fact is that Pinterest has twice the market share when compared to Instagram.
of the population has access to the Internet
of users use Google
In France, as in most countries in the world, the most popular search engine is Google (share summary as of February 2022):
As far as web browsers are concerned, Google’s Chrome is also the most popular. It is also worth noting that every fifth French person uses Apple’s Safari (data for February 2022):
Summarising the above preferences of French internet users, it can be said with certainty that Google is doing very well in Western Europe. Thus, in particular its search robot algorithms, as well as site ranking systems, should be taken into account when positioning sites in this area of the Old Continent.
Nearly 40 million people in France shop online. In 2019, they made 1.7 billion transactions and e-commerce turnover reached 100 billion euros! This is the sixth largest online sales market in the world. French shoppers make an average of 42 transactions per year online with a total value of EUR 2,500.
It is worth remembering, both in terms of organising an online shop and SEO activities, that half of all smartphone users in France buy products from a virtual shopping cart on a regular basis, i.e. at least once a month. Marketplaces are also popular in France, both among shops operating online (35% are also on MP) and among traditional brick-and-mortar shops (23%). As for the share of total e-commerce turnover, at 15%, it comes from Marketplaces. The French like to shop online, and not only at their national e-commerce companies. As many as 36% of them often order products from foreign suppliers.
What do the French buy on the web? Let’s see:
The “Travel” category includes both private and business trips, as well as other expenses related to tourism and hotels. This sector is the only one to have declined in recent years compared to the others, due to the coronavirus pandemic.
As for the online shops with the highest turnover in France, the top ten are as follows:
The companies in the first two places are responsible for almost half of the total turnover of the French e-commerce market.
In France, the vast majority (85%) of online shoppers order products with home delivery. When it comes to payment, however, a similar level of popularity is enjoyed by bank cards, accounting for up to 80% of transactions:
Assessing the share of individual payment methods, it can be concluded that e-consumers in France like to pay efficiently, “on the spot”, and at the time of purchase for goods bought online. This is certainly good news for the owners of online shops, due to the better liquidity and “healthy” balance of their account.
France is no exception when it comes to the premium and greater credibility accorded to native domains. This means that it is advisable for our website to have a national extension, in this case “.fr”. This will make it more likely to appear in the list of search results for a query from a French user.
However, if you plan to expand your sales network to several foreign markets, it is worth considering European or a global domain such as “.eu” or “.com”. Then, when creating subsequent language versions, extend them by individual countries, i.e. mypage.eu/fr, mypage.eu/de, mypage.eu/it, etc.
France is the 5th largest economy and the 6th largest e-commerce market in the world! In terms of population, France is in second place in the European Union. The French language is the tenth most spoken language in the world. This information clearly shows the potential and profitability of entering this attractive market.
As far as the number of internet users is concerned, France takes third place in Europe after Germany and Great Britain! It is worth taking a place on the rich map of virtual interests of the French. Another important aspect is the small presence of Polish companies in this part of the Old Continent. On the one hand, it is a hindrance, because of the lack of effective patterns of conducting business here, but on the other hand, it is a chance, new possibilities and an opportunity to blaze a trail before the competition.
France is the second largest country in Europe, with a very well developed e-commerce market. Equally valuable is the fact that the French like to use foreign marketplaces. Thus, when we match the price and quality of the offered products to the tastes of nearly 40 million customers of online shops, we will be able to grab at least a small fraction of the e-commerce turnover in France, already estimated in recent years at more than 115 billion euros per year.
SEO in French is “référencement”, which literally means referring or referencing, which of course is clearly associated with link building. France is no exception when it comes to positioning and its effectiveness, which is significantly influenced by high quality links. It is good, when their base is large, however, the most important thing is that it should carry value, which can be assessed, for example, by the DR index (domain rating), as measured in a tool called Ahrefs.
When it comes to the keyword catalogue, depending on the industry in which we run our business, it is worth taking into account the fact that some products/services may be called differently by users depending on their origin and region of residence. For example, the French traditional chocolate buns, most commonly known as “pain au chocolat”, would be called “chocolatine” in the southern Pyrenees region. Thus, if we want to attract the widest possible audience, we should take into account the possibly different designations of the identical product depending on the area of operation.
As in most countries, including in France, you should remember about link diversification. The point is that they should come not only from good quality websites, but also, for example, from thematic forums or social media.
Full Customer Journey
Using SEO360®, we reach consumers at each stage of the purchasing process; analysing their activities with the use of CRO, we increase sales effectiveness.
Network of quality partners
We execute activities independently or with in-country partners who operate at the same high level as us.
Supervision of the entire process
Our Client Success Managers, who manage the end-to-end process, ensure the best results for our customers.
Guaranteed link maintenance
We do not remove acquired links even after the end of cooperation.
Constant access to reports updated 24/7.
Dedicated to E-commerce
It is effective for other industries as well, including the service sector and SMEs.
It is the starting point for SEO360® actions, individually priced and created on the basis of the customer’s needs and expectations included earlier in the brief filled in by the customer. As part of our conceptual work, we establish the KPIs necessary for successful implementation of further stages of the project, in particular analysis, content marketing plan and estimations, which are the components of the strategy.
In this step, we carry out all the activities verifying the current state of the selected website in terms of SEO and its potential in a given country when compared to the competition. At the same time, we analyse the full user path based on the customer journey. The result of the analysis is a large amount of data that can be used to implement further SEO360® steps.
Content Marketing Plan
Individually prepared for the industry represented by the Client and for the given markets where SEO360® activities will be conducted. It includes a scenario concerning the type of created content and the way of its distribution in order to reach the consumers with it precisely and to be one step ahead of the competition. Content Creators guarantee the successful implementation of this plan.
An extremely valuable and final component of the strategy, where we estimate individual values related to the visibility of the website in the most popular search engine of a given country, taking into account the increase in traffic and, more importantly, the increase in conversions over a specified period of time.
When starting proper SEO activities, one of the necessary steps to achieve final success is technical SEO, also called technical analysis or technical optimisation for SEO, i.e. the part of optimisation that does not concern content. It consists of all activities that affect the architecture and code of a website in such a way as to make it as friendly as possible to the most stringent search engine requirements and, at the same time, to stay one step ahead of the competition.
Part of optimising a website for SEO, in addition to technical SEO, is content optimisation. Valuable content for the user is one of the key elements that will help to achieve high search engine visibility as well as increase conversions and thus revenue.
UX + CRO
As part of the SEO360® service, we provide analysis and optimisation of User Experience metrics with a particular focus on heuristic experiments and A/B testing as well as Conversion Rate Optimisation. In this way, we analyse consumer activity at each stage of their purchase process, increasing sales effectiveness.
We conduct link building using the highest quality permanent links acquired from external sources or services, from reliable publishers with a guarantee of their maintenance even after the end of cooperation. As part of this process, we take care of the correct link profile, which brings end benefits.
Ongoing Data Analysis
In SEO360®, through advanced tools supervised by the Client Success Manager, we constantly measure the progress related to the evaluation of conducted activities, and on their basis, our customers have access to extensive reports 24/7.
Increase in traffic and revenue
The ultimate value of SEO360® is the increase in brand awareness, traffic, conversions and revenue generated from the service, which is significantly higher than in the case of ‘regular SEO’ and above all, it is long-lasting.
Similarly to the Polish Google.pl, positioning will be ‘regionally’ targeted in its French equivalent (Google.fr), i.e. it will reach users physically living, working and using the net in France. This is a good solution if we have a locally tailored offer, because we will reach local recipients. The local address of our branch, subsidiary or partner can help in these activities, which we could put in our contact details on the website and in public contact databases.
There are several elements to keep in mind when doing SEO in France. Most residents enter phrases into the search engine in their native language. They also sometimes depend on the specific region. It is worth paying attention to this when creating a keyword catalogue, which of course should not be prepared by translating the words 1:1. To make sure the phrases are well-chosen in terms of meaning, it is best to ask a native speaker for help. Finally, and most importantly, remember about high quality link building, thanks to which your website should climb up the search results over time.