Getting traffic to your website requires a solid SEO strategy that helps you rank high in the various search engines, with social media as an integrated part of that strategy. However, with so many different social media platforms, it can be easy to spread your efforts too thin. For this reason, it is critical to choose the platforms that will work best for your business and your website. Most businesses will find that Google+ and Facebook are most vital to SEO strategy.
Social media sharing has been shown to correlate with high search rankings. Though Google and the other search engines do not tell us exactly what factors contribute to their specific algorithms, evidence shows us that social sharing like +1’s and sharing on Facebook lead to higher search engine rankings. Experts tell us they are probably not included in the algorithms, but the search engines do “see” when high-quality content is shared, and that gives your rankings a nudge. Let’s look at a few of the platforms and how to use them to enhance search rankings.
Since it’s owned by the largest search engine provider, it stands to reason that Google+ might help with search engine rankings, right? That would be correct, even though Google+ has had its share of failures as it tried to figure out just where it fits into the social media/SEO landscape. Turns out, that social SEO combination is the sweet spot that helps you leverage the platform to market and grow your business.
To be seen by the search engines, you need to be one of the top results for a search done by users, since we know that 75 percent of users stick to the first page of results, and most click on the first three results that are found. Remember, there are lots of businesses all trying to achieve that same high ranking for your keywords, so taking advantage of all the available tools is critical.
Google+ marketing is a powerful tool you should not overlook, as it is built from the ground up for SEO. Most people that work with search rankings and SEO also believe that Google might give you an extra boost when you use Google+ marketing, in an effort to make their brand more competitive. This more likely is attributed to the fact that Google+ posts and crawled and indexed, just like articles and blog posts online. These posts also pass on link equity in similar ways to blog posts and websites. Even better, the platform is set up in such a way that a rank beginner (no pun intended!) can start posting and increasing their page rank in no time.
While Facebook is completely different from Google+, it is important to SEO as well. You can use a strong social presence on Facebook to enhance the reputation of your brand, develop great relationships with customers and prospects, as well as related companies, and to handle any customer service issues that arise.
People are always more likely to click on your links if they know your site and trust it, and this is one of the prime examples of how Facebook can help. If your Facebook page is strong and you are actively managing it, that creates instant credibility and makes others more likely to link to you as well, passing on more SEO juice.
Additionally, with strong engagement, your Facebook shares and posts will get your information about you, your company, your products and services, in front of more eyeballs. This, in turn, encourages more clicks and more links to your site.
Issues that are brought to your attention on Facebook are a great way to showcase your great customer service. Remember to always respond, no matter how strong the criticism and how much you might disagree. That shows that you want to resolve the problem, and will show all of the people watching the conversation how well you handle conflicts as well.
Twitter is a little different because your Tweets and responses have to be under 140 characters. It can be a little difficult to fit all of what you need to say in that space. Do not pass Twitter by, though, because they recently partnered up with Google, and relevant Tweets now show up in searches. So, your focus should be getting your Tweets noticed and ranked. You can get your Tweets ranked with a few quick tips.
First of all, experts say that increasing followers means that more SEO weight is given to your Tweets. After all, the more followers you have, the more influential you are.
Additionally, including images in your Tweets increases the chances that they’ll be ranked, and they give you opportunities to improve and expand your brand, and even embed content into the images. You can post images to Twitter automatically from Instagram or Pinterest, which are two other social media platforms that you’ll want to use if images will help with your branding and SEO.
Further, hashtags are critical on Twitter. They are keywords in your text, preceded by the # symbol. They improve Twitter engagement and exposed your Tweets to more people on Twitter and off.
We’ve mentioned five social media platforms, though Pinterest and Instagram only briefly. These five are plenty to get you started enhancing your brand, building relationships, engaging and connecting, and getting attention from the social media platforms. Once you build a solid foundation, you can utilize it continuously to keep your social presence active, which will in turn help with your SEO rankings.