An Introduction To Local Optimization

Russian search works a little differently than we’re used to with Google, even in countries like the United States that are also big.

Within Yandex.Webmaster, you can choose which country you want to target (if applicable). From a user’s point of view, geotargeting searches are very important to getting useful and relevant results.

Arzamas & Konakovo

In 2006, the Arzamas update let people manually choose whether they saw search results for the whole country or just for their area. More than 1,250 cities in countries like Ukraine, Belarus, and Kazakhstan were added to this in 2009.

Yandex looks at your website’s IP address, contact information (make sure this is organized and shown clearly), and domain registration information to see if it’s safe.

There are a lot of signs here that point to the Nenets Autonomous Okrug region, but if you’re actually targeting the Murmansk Oblast region, you might not show up as high in local searches.

This was made even better in 2010 when the Obninsk algorithm was used, which also saw websites that were boosting their local rankings with spam directory listings get punished.

Changing Your Yandex Region

It is possible to set your region in your Yandex.Webmaster account, as we said. However, the search engine doesn’t take this as gospel.

If you’re an online retailer that can ship to anywhere, you won’t be affected by Yandex’s localized search for queries about online retail.

You can choose up to seven regions in Yandex.Webmaster. To do so, you must be in the Yandex.Catalogue.

Dan Taylor
Dan Taylor is an experienced SEO consultant and has worked with brands and companies on optimizing for Russia (and Yandex) for a number of years. Winner of the inaugural 2018 TechSEO Boost competition, webmaster at and Sloth.Cloud, and founder of