Expat Finland Site Information
Expat Finland helps non-Finnish speakers, and helps companies reach that market in Finland
This page details Expat Finland's performance and history. You can jump straight to the sections using the menu.
For enquiries please contact:
Kaivokatu 10 B 31, 20520 Turku
Phone: 050 4099 785
Expat Finland, www.expat-finland.com is owned and operated by
Stuart Allt Web Design, Y-tunnus: 1771763-0
- Key audience: People requiring information, products or services in or about Finland
- Contribution: Useful, honest content which genuinely helps visitors, and promoting Finland's economy and culture
- Distinction: Exceptional search engine rankings, high organic traffic, strong user-confidence and reputation built since July 2004
The difference from other media is that Expat Finland visitors have a need:
Views of advertisements in most media are accidental. They rely on someone who is not looking for a product or service noticing an advertisement.
Expat Finland visitors usually need something in Finland. About 85% have conducted a search at Google and arrived directly at the Expat Finland page which fulfils that need.
For searches in English related to Finland, Expat Finland often appears on page 1 of Google results. The main reasons include trustworthiness, site longevity, authority and search engine optimisation (hakukoneoptimointi).
*Positions cited below exclude paid Google advertisements which always appear at the top of Google results
Examples from January 2017:
|accountant helsinki||Page 1 position 2||Page 1 position 2|
|finnish telephone operators||Page 1 position 1||Page 1 position 1|
|international mover finland||Page 1 position 1||Page 1 position 1|
|buy property finland||Page 1 position 1||Page 1 position 2|
|furnished apartment helsinki||Page 1 position 1||Page 1 position 1|
|international school helsinki||Page 1 position 3||Page 1 position 2|
|driving in finland||Page 1 position 2||Page 1 position 2|
|finnish employment services||Page 1 position 2||Page 1 position 3|
The first paid promotions were for companies who approached Expat Finland requesting endorsement in 2012-2013. They have remained as clients; the longest-standing and best-known include Niemi, Victor Ek, and Forenom. Expat Finland does almost no marketing; the vast majority of clients have contacted Expat Finland directly. Clients' support is greatly appreciated and makes continuation of Expat Finland possible; from inception in 2004, by 2013 the demands of site maintenance and development had become too high to continue providing free.
I feel privileged to live in Finland and try to 'give something back' by promoting Finnish governmental authorities such as Invest in Finland, Enterprise Finland, Visit Finland, This is Finland, and Infopankki. I also promote cultural organisations such as Books from Finland, published by the Finnish Literature Society. Government authorities will always be featured free of charge, as will various non-profit organisations.
Expat Finland is not a magazine or entertainment site, it's an information resource. Most visitors have a specific purpose and don't usually return until they need something else. They usually only visit the one page they found in a Google search, get what they need, then leave. There will never be tens of thousands of visitors per day, but the people who do visit are exceptionally well-targeted prospective clients.
Expat Finland Traffic for 2016
Figures for the whole site, January 1, 2016 - December 31, 2016:
- 794 755 pageviews, 697 334 unique pageviews
- Over 1900 unique pageviews per day
- About 85% were 'organic' i.e. coming directly from a search engine; Google accounts for about 96% of organic traffic
- About 10% of visitors came 'direct' i.e. typed the Expat Finland address into their browser or had it bookmarked
- Average time spent on page: 2 minutes 56 seconds
- Geographic location: Varies greatly from page to page ex. Work Permits, mostly foreign origin and Supermarkets, mostly local origin
- Mobile traffic: Expat Finland is smartphone-friendly. The percentage of visitors using mobile devices has increased from 12% in January 2014 to 42% in January 2017.
Expat Finland only lists reputable companies, which is one reason it has gained trust. Companies featured at Expat Finland gain the benefit of that trust.
WOT Services Oy is a Finnish company running the Web Of Trust (WOT) website reputation rating service. Reputations are primarily based on user ratings submitted from site visitors worldwide.
WOT ratings for Expat Finland:
- Trustworthiness: Excellent
- Vendor Reliability: Excellent
- Child Safety: Excellent
- Privacy: Excellent
- Expat Finland's basic WOT page: www.mywot.com/en/scorecard/expat-finland.com
Similar to WOT, Webutation is an open website reputation community collecting user feedback and customer experience about websites.
Webutation rates Expat Finland 100/100:
- Trustworthiness: 100
- Child Safety: 100
- Social Reputation: 100
- Expat Finland's Webutation page: www.webutation.net/go/review/expat-finland.com
- Late 2001: For a non-Finnish speaking Australian, getting simple things done in Finland was not easy. Most Finnish websites were only available in Finnish and Swedish, and Finnish people were less confident with English than now. Tasks like setting up bank and telephone accounts, finding and setting up an apartment, and registering a company were time-consuming and difficult.
- 2002-2003: As a Web designer I had the resources to share the 'Finnish know-how' I had gained. The idea for Expat Finland was born; an English-language resource to help people in a similar situation to myself, built and offered free of charge.
- 2004: Expat Finland was launched. The original site comprised about 30 pages; traffic expectations were modest.
- 2004-2006: Traffic rapidly increased and content was added. The Finnish Minister for Foreign Affairs thanked me for my efforts!
- 2006-2008: Most Finnish government departments released English versions of their websites. I expected parts of Expat Finland to become redundant, however traffic continued to rise.
- 2008-2010: As content increased, maintenance and development demands became substantial. Expat Finland remained free but had taken over 7000 hours plus expenditure on hosting etc. To offset this, Google Ads were implemented throughout the site which drew about €1000 revenue per year.
- 2011: Site maintenance fell behind as time was not available to keep the site in 'good condition'. The Google Ads were usually irrelevant to the pages they appeared on, reducing the quality of the site.
- 2012-2013: Traffic and demand remained high. The decision was made to commit to Expat Finland and build an enduring, quality product which could justify itself financially by offering paid promotions to suitable businesses. Government authorities and most non-profit organisations would remain free. The site was rebuilt from scratch, incorporating Responsive Web Design for functionality on smartphones. Google Ads were removed.
- July 2013: The new site was launched. Expat Finland now had over 100 pages and was a quality product with its integrity intact. The Google '+1' and Facebook 'Like' buttons were added to boost internet presence. A companion Facebook page was launched for updates and 'Tips for Finland.'
- August 2013: Following Expat Finland's exclusive publication of Fingerpori in English the site 'went viral', receiving about 30,000 visits per day for about 6 weeks.
- February 2014: A Google+ page for updates and tips, very similar to the Facebook page, was launched for visitors who prefer that medium.
- February 2014: A new mobile version of the site was released, improving the user experience on smartphones.
- January 2015: A mobile usability upgrade was implemented. Mobile traffic has risen from 12% in January 2014 to 42% in January 2017.
- February 2015: Comprehensive changes to the menu and page layout significantly improved usability. An expanded footer was added, containing important links to Finnish information and government sites.
- May 2015: Page titles and descriptions throughout the site were revised to ensure compliance with the latest Google standards.
- March 2016: In-page navigation was upgraded to improve the user experience.
- August 2016: Site-wide revision to ensure continued high performance in accordance with the latest Google algorithm.
- January 2017: Followers of Expat Finland's Facebook page reached 15,000.
- June 2017: Followers of Expat Finland's Facebook page reached 20,000.
- September 2017: CSS and layout update for mobile usability.
Content continues to be added and the site receives about 35,000 unique visitors per month. For most pages, 'Average Time on Page' is 2½ - 5 minutes. January 2017, Google Analytics
- August 2013: Following publication of Fingerpori in English, Expat Finland was featured in Helsingin Sanomat's Culture section. See article (Finnish)
- April 2014: Expat Finland was the subject of a full-length article in Finnish language training magazine Puhutaan Suomea. See article: Finnish English - text only
After finishing university in 1991 I left Australia for 'a year or two' and never made it back. After a year in Japan and another in London, in 1994 I met a Finn who invited me to Finland for Juhannus. That 3-day trip lasted 3 years and we were married. Her work took us to New York in 1997, where I studied web development and started Stuart Allt Web Design. From there we moved to Tanzania, where we separated and I returned to Finland in 2001.
During my travels I have primarily been an English teacher and web developer. I have a henkilötunnus in 6 countries and a good appreciation of cross-cultural differences.
Finland is the country I'm proud to call home; the weather isn't perfect for an Aussie but the people and culture are, in my experience, the best! I appreciate Finnish directness, honesty, modesty, and the quest for knowledge.
I have a degree in psychology and industrial relations from the University of Sydney, where I also studied philosophy.