The Art of Social Media and SEO Marketing
As social media has become a factor in online marketing, many have debated whether this has had an impact on SEO. Specifically, this includes likes, retweets, and engagement, all of which indirectly impact a website’s search engine rankings.
More specifically, both content and conversations through places like Facebook, Twitter, and LinkedIn send out social signals. And these signals ultimately have an impact on your brand’s visibility online. In a nutshell, the higher the mentions the better chances of your business being seen. But according to Search Engine Watch, this does not necessarily mean that social media will directly move your website up in the rankings.
“It’s not the actual social activity that matters, but what happens as a result of that activity.” ~ AJ Kohn
If your content is popular within your community on social media, the search engines will take notice. In 2014, Matt Cutts explained that Google’s SEO algorithm isn’t directly crawling social activity due to privacy concerns. Social signals and links back to your website can indeed attract more visitors to your website and therefore increase brand awareness.
Increasing Search Visibility
In a social engagement study by Hootsuite, organic search and rankings based on a number of factors were measured – such as organic posts and tweets versus paid. Their results show an increase in search visibility with a direct impact from social media interactions and posts:
The study determined that “there is a strong correlation between the number of websites pointing to a piece of content and relative rank. Overall there were more improvements in rank associated with social engagements than observed ranking losses.”
The bottom line is that In order to establish a strong brand presence online, you need to produce valuable and original content. The natural result will be that your website ranking will increase as your social influence and relevance improve.
You may also want to read: 8 Best SEO Practices To Avoid Google Penalties
In order to build more social signals for higher search rankings follow these steps:
1 – Authentic Fans and Followers are Essential
In addition to paid or promoted content on social media, your brand needs to also build relationships with your community through chats, live video, stories, and groups.
The quality of your connections matter! Take the time to evaluate your current brand followers and eliminate as many spam and irrelevant accounts as possible. Remember, it’s not about the high numbers but rather, the quality of your connections.
2 – Include Specific Hashtags and Links To Your Website in Profiles And Content
Include any important website links and relevant hashtags in order to build social proof and attract inbound links that matter to your audience. Generic keywords appear like spam, and can often result in getting banned from places like Facebook, Instagram, and Twitter. Consider creating a branded hashtag that your followers will come to recognize, like this example from marketing expert Ted Rubin:
3 – Visual Marketing Can Build Your Audience
Your brand will need to catch your visitors’ attention quickly with images and videos that inform and encourage interactions. These include stories, live video, podcasts, etc. The more helpful and appealing your content is, the better chance it will have of entering into conversations. And conversations affect your search engine ranking.
Don’t be afraid to try new things and put your brand out there where your audience is most active. For example, if they are engaging more on Instagram then you will want to place most of your focus on that platform.
You may also want to read: SEO Differences Between Google and Other Search Engines
4 – Live Streaming and Twitter Chats Connect You With Your Audience
Video streaming and social media have evolved to become more community driven as more people seek to find instant information. These are mostly accessed from mobile devices. In order to reach people where they are, your brand needs to be available as their go-to source and answers. Engaging in this type of social media activity can dramatically increase your following and bring people directly to your website.
As Google continues to update its algorithm based on mobile usage and emerging technologies, social media will continue to have an indirect impact on search results and visibility. The level of brand engagement and authenticity will become the determining factor in brand visibility. While content is still important, you will need to include other digital marketing methods to your mix in order to grow your following online.
Featured image: Copyright: ‘https://www.123rf.com/profile_venimo‘ / 123RF Stock Photo
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