Does Yandex Give Any Preference To URLs That Contain Cyrillic?

From a recent Q&A that I conducted with the Yandex search team, I asked the question around the use of Cyrillic characters in URI strings, and if there is any benefit in terms of rankings or crawlability, given that Yandex tests all updates in native Russian first.

The response from Yandex’s search team was pretty conclusive:

Yandex does not give any preferences for URLs containing Cyrillic or Latin. However, we recommend webmasters use a clear structure and human-readable URLs on their sites.

From experience, having mixed URLs (Cyrillic and Latin) characters doesn’t make much of an impact. The only caveat being that if you don’t have the correct alphabets installed on your computer when you copy and paste Cyrillic URLs for reporting or analysis, you can get

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 HreflangChecker.com and Sloth.Cloud, and founder of RussianSearchNews.com.