What Is Hreflang Tag? (And Why You Should Know About It)

What Is Hreflang Tag?

Expanding your marketing strategies to include new potential clients is an effective way to grow your website traffic and boost your business. The Hreflang tag can make this task much easier. As a business owner, you might have considered expanding to an international audience using their regional languages. But can you translate the language of your digital presence to suit their needs? Understanding the Hreflang tag is crucial to attracting audiences from different geographical locations. It also prevents duplicate content penalties by the search engine.

What Is Hreflang Tag?

A Hreflang tag is an HTML attribute or code that specifies the language and geographical targeting of your webpage to the search engine. It helps to ensure that the search engine displays the right page to the right audience based on their location. When you implement this tag on your website, you can attract international traffic from a region that potentially has a larger market size for your product or services. You can add the hreflang attribute in the following three ways:

  • In the HTML head of the web page
  • In the HTTP header for PDFs and non-HTML pages or files
  • In the XML sitemap.

What Does An Hreflang Tag Look Like?

This tag is easy to use and follows a consistent syntax. The syntax and its explanation is elaborated below.

<link rel=”alternate” hreflang=”es” href=”https://exampleforhreflang.com/alternate-page”/>

Now, let’s understand what each part of the above hreflang attribute means.

link rel=”alternate“: The link in this tag is an alternate version of this content page.

hreflang=”es“: It is in a different language, and the language is Spanish.

href=”https://exampleforhreflang.com/alternate-page”/>: The alternate page can be accessed at this URL.

Hreflang supports two-letter ISO 639-1 language code. For example, ‘mx’ for Mexico, ‘de’ for German, ‘us’ for the United States, etc.

Why Does Hreflang Tag Matter For SEO?

Suppose you have your website content written in English along with the local currency for your products. You wish to target an audience who are English speakers but from a different geographical location having a different currency.

In such circumstances, the Hreflang tag allows the search engine to show an alternate version of your website content. This piece of content automatically reflects their daily currency. It is also useful to translate your content into different languages. Ensure the search engine shows the relevant result in a language preferred by your target audience.

You can have your entire website content translated into different languages or just a few portions of it, depending on the nature of your business. For example, you have two versions of a piece of content on your website, one targeting UK readers with British English and the other targeting US readers with a preference for American English spellings. Since both these pages have identical content, Google may perceive them as duplicate content and choose only one page to rank.

But when you add the hreflang tag, it helps the search engine to understand the relationship between these two pages. It tries to show the correct version of the content in the search results based on the searcher’s geographical location.

When you provide your website visitors with content relevant to them, you will likely see a boost in your page rankings and an increase in your website traffic.

Tools To Make Hreflang Tag Implementation Easier

We can understand that not everyone is comfortable with codes. So, if creating hreflang tags sounds complicated and intimidating to you, relax. There are a few handy tools that help you tackle the hreflang tag on your website.

Hreflang tag Generator Tool

You can either manually add the URLs to the generator or upload them as CSV and fill up the form. It is one of the easiest ways to add hreflang tag to your website.

Hreflang Tag Checker

It is a Google Chrome extension that automates the checking tag implementation, records your URL tags, and crawls them to verify they redirect to the correct URL.


You can double-check your entire website code for the hreflang tags with this free tool.

If you recently launched a new website for your business, be sure to implement the hreflang tag and the top 10 SEO practices to attract organic traffic.


Hreflang tag can be a valuable tool to indicate to the search engine about the language of your website content and what region are you targeting with a particular piece of content. When implemented correctly and consistently, it can help you reach an international audience with your products or services, thus boosting your sales. It is best suggested to take the help of a digital marketing agency since implementing this tag involves a firm grasp of technical aspects. The agency professionals are well-versed in the nuances of growing your website traffic through various strategies and helping you scale your business to new heights.

Author avatar
Ashwini Singh