International Targeting report

Use the International Targeting report to monitor your hreflang errors, or to choose a country that should be prioritized for your search results. This report has the following sections:

  • The Language section: Monitor the usage and errors of hreflang tags on your site. 
  • The Country section: Set a site-wide country target for your entire site, if desired.


Open the International Targeting Report


To learn about different mechanisms for targeting your site at specific regions or languages, read the Multi-regional and multilingual sites topics.

Language tab

The Language section of the International Targeting page shows the following hreflang errors in your site. Up to 1,000 errors can be shown.

Error Description
No return tags

An hreflang tag has no matching tag on the target page. The table aggregates missing return tags by implementation and locale for the following implementations:

  • Page-level: The total number of hreflang errors by language in the <head> section of your pages. The details page shows a maximum of 1,000 URLs on your site, paired with the alternate-language page that's missing a return tag to its mate.
  • Sitemap: The total number of hreflang errors found in your sitemap. The details page lists the sitemap that indicates the URL pairing and the alternate URL that has no return link.
  • HTTP headers: The total number of hreflang errors for alternate files provided in your HTTP header configuration. The details page lists the configuration and alternate URLs with no return link.
Unknown language code For unknown language (and optional country) codes that you have indicated in your site, the table displays the locale followed by unknown language code.  As with the no return tag error, you can drill down to see URL-level details and total counts of unknown language codes for that specific locale.

Click on a row to inspect error details, with a maximum of 1,000 rows.

Country tab

Google Search returns the most relevant and useful sites for a user. Because of this, search results can differ between a user in Ireland and a user in France.

If your site has a generic top-level domain, such as .com or .org, you can help us determine which countries are most important to you. If your site has a country-coded top-level domain (such as .ie or .fr) it is already associated with a geographic region (in this example, Ireland or France). If you use a country-coded domain, you won't be able to specify a geographic location. You can specify a target country in the International Targeting report.

Setting a country target

  1. On the International Targeting report, click the Country tab.

  2. Check the Geographic target checkbox and choose your country target. If you want to ensure that your site is not associated with any country or region, select Unlisted in the drop-down list.

This setting is only for geographic data. If you're targeting users in different locations—for example, if you have a site in French that you want users in France, Canada, and Mali to read—don't use this tool to set France as a geographic target. A good example of where it would be useful is for a restaurant website: if the restaurant is in Canada, it's probably not of interest to folks in France. But if your content is in French and is of interest to people in multiple countries/regions, it's probably better not to restrict it.

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