What Brexit means for your SEO in France


Brexit: The dreaded B-word that has taken over the United Kingdom for nearly four years now.

No one knows for sure what the future holds, but there will be a lot of changes ahead for British businesses that trade in France or other European countries.

Businesses in every sector will be curbing their marketing efforts until they know for certain what’s happening. Their caution is understandable, but people aren’t going to stop buying things at the end of the transition period. This is your chance to swoop in and give customers exactly what they’re looking for.

Focus on online marketing

How? Well, what we do know is that, during the last major period of financial uncertainty, businesses who put their efforts into search engine optimization (SEO) and online marketing were more successful than others.  After all, while marketing is often the first budget to be slashed in times of financial hardship, SEO campaigns managed by the right people do remain incredibly effective even if there is less money poured into them

That’s why it’s important for business owners targeting the French market to look closely at their online presence. In this article, we will look at the biggest areas for you to pay attention to.

Hire French Writers

Whether you have an in-house marketing department or work with freelancers, you’ll need to add a native French speaker to your team. There are two big reasons for this:

  • French clients will likely want additional assurances regarding information about them that is sent to the UK.
  • Changes to Customs mean that you will likely have to make major changes to official documentation, including invoices, web forms, and transport licenses.

If you want a French client to choose you over your competitor, you’ll need to hire a French speaker to make these changes.

If you’re wondering why you can’t just translate your English copy into French, the reason is that it’s not just a case of changing it word for word. National idioms, (un)gendered nouns, and different cultures can mean even beautifully crafted English copy will be rendered almost useless once put through an online translator.


There is likely to be a major change in keyword competition right now, with many businesses choosing not to spend their money on these. It also might be that lower-ranking keywords get a boost with customers, so you’ll have to keep an eye on these changes.

Bear in mind that it’s not just about what keyword will do best, but about which company can adapt the quickest to market changes in search terms and consumer preference. The best way to do this is to look for a multilingual or French SEO agency, which is well versed in French SEO and the French marketing world.

Hosting and Domain Names

There is a real concern for websites after Brexit because all British-owned websites that end in “.eu” may need to relocate to their UK equivalent. This is annoying enough, especially if previous customers have trouble finding your website or emailing you, but there actually could be a further problem down the road. Renewed talks of a second Scottish referendum mean that, should the Scots vote for independence, the “.uk” domain could become superfluous.

Even though it’s hard not to be affected by all the changes that the Brexit may bring, at least this has given you an idea of where to take your online marketing and what to focus on.