How To Promote Business Online In Russia

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Quick facts about Russia

  • 143+ mln country population, 65+ mln. Internet users (only 45,4% penetration)
  • €8 bln. e-commerce annual turnover
  • 30% year over year growth of internet users
  • The association between overseas products and higher quality still holds from the times of the Soviet Union. All other things being equal, a consumer will choose a foreign product.

The most important traffic sources

Search marketplace

  • Yandex 53%, Google 36%, 9%, 2% – others (differs slightly across different Russian-speaking countries).

Top 5 Yandex algorithm specifics

  • Yandex has its own “Pagerank”, so-called “Theme Citation Index”.
  • Yandex is extremely content-sensitive. Small corrections strongly impact rankings.
  • Yandex uses behavioral factors heavily. Much more heavily than Google.
  • Yandex filters out paid links instead of penalizing a website they point to.
  • Yandex has a strong affiliate filter that distinguishes websites that belong to one owner.

Top 5 Google Russia specifics

  • Lower level of competitiveness in general
  • Less filters and algorithm updates
  • Much more links with aggressive link anchors because of widely spread links buying
  • Traditional links acquisition techniques works much worse due to commonly used cheap paid links.
  • There are very few websites in Google Local Search and it appears more rarely than in USA.

Top 3 Specifics

  • has its own algorithm
  • has its own well developed anti-spam filters, but it seems that they are a bit weaker than Yandex’s filters.
  • widely uses behavioral factors in its ranking system.

Pay per click & CPA marketplace

The most important pay per click & CPA traffic sources:


It allows advertising in search results and on Yandex Advertising Network. Yandex provides discounts for agencies, thus you can hire an agency for free.

The quality of the landing page and other factors outside of the CTR, have very little impact, in contrast to the Quality Score methodology employed by AdWords.

Google AdWords

Using Google AdWords contextual adverting aimed at Russian speakers has no significant differences to its English language version. Russian tends to use longer words than English, and as a result, the adverts need to be shorter. It is also important to pay attention to the correct usage of cases and endings.

A huge opportunity lays in local keywords i.e. “buy [product] in [city]”.


With 41+ mln. daily users Vkontakte is one of the most important Russian traffic sources. It allows you to run PPC campaigns and even target your ads on users’ position, like LinkedIn.


About 7,5 mln. Russian accounts, mostly geeks, early adopters and business audience.

Price Comparison Websites

Cheap yet quality traffic, an average click can cost you about $0,1-$0,2. The most popular Russian comparison sites are:


Teaser Networks

A bit yellowish traffic source, but sometimes it works well. The largest teaser networks are

  • (~9 mln. daily visitors)
  • (~2 mln. daily visitors)
  • (~0,4 mln. daily visitors)

CPA systems

CPA model is a brand new opportunity for Russian market. There are very few CPA systems available, among them are:


Display advertising

The largest Russian display advertising systems are:

  • (31 mln. reachable daily audience)
  • (27 mln. reachable daily audience)


Data credits:;lang=en

Anna Korolekh (Moseva)

Anna Korolekh (Moseva)

Deputy Chief Marketing Officer at PSD2HTML
Anna Korolekh (Moseva), Deputy Chief Marketing Officer at PSD2HTML, a full cycle website development company. Anna started her career in online marketing in 2009 from... Read Full Bio
Anna Korolekh (Moseva)
Anna Korolekh (Moseva)

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  • andrea scarpetta

    excellent list anna! What do you mean by “yellowish traffic” ?

    • Anna

      Hi Andrea, thank you for your feedback! By “yellowish” traffic I meant that the traffic from teaser networks is good for topics related to so-called yellow press, so it’s basically good for entertainment niche sites and etc.

  • James McCormick

    Thanks for the look into Russian web operations. The 45% Internet penetration for such a massive companies represents a major opportunity for those involved with global web operations management. A serious global marketer would expand so that their SEO included Yandex as well as Google.

    • James McCormick

      Thanks for the look into Russian web operations. The 45% Internet penetration for such a massive country represents a major opportunity for those involved with global web operations management. A serious global marketer would expand so that their SEO included Yandex as well as Google.

  • Ashish Chaubey

    Amazing Post. Really showing the great efforts of R&D for Russia Business Infographic. But do you know “Anna Moseva” . I think this method is not only can be apply in Russia rather than it will expand the whole feature in world wide.
    Thanks Anna Moseva

  • Daniil Zabolotny

    Anna, great work, thanks for the figures!

    as a CEO for AdLabs Media Network, one of Russian’s biggest teaser networks, I’d like to make a few comments:
    – teaser networks indeed started as a ‘yellowish traffic’ sources years ago, mainly consisting of news-oriented ads (each ad is a picture + a small text (usually not more than 100 letters)
    – now some networks (like us) aggregate traffic for news, tourist, auto, and different e-commerce products and websites. we provide CPA bidding, deep sources analysis and other marketing tools
    – I’m sure if you addressed our competitors, they would tell you that daily reach figures you mention are a bit strange. for instance, AdLabs Media Network has more than 17 million unique visitors a day (measured by Live Internet – independent source)

    again, thanks a lot for the article and have a nice day!

    Daniil Zabolotny
    CEO for AdLabse Media Network

  • Anna

    Thank you, Daniil, I am glad you liked it! πŸ™‚

  • Venchito Tampon

    Great infographic Anna! Love it.

    I hope that there is also a content like this for the Philippines. πŸ˜€

  • 5vlast

    Anna nice work but i will comment on it as well
    – you forget to POT “VK” vkontakte on Under Slashes it’s most visited website after yandex pass on all traffic monitors on Russia such as liveinternet

    • Anna

      Thank you, I have put VK into one of the most valuable sources of PPC traffic πŸ™‚

  • Justin Spencer

    Quite informative!