Who isn’t using some form of online social media today, right? There are billions of Facebook, Instagram, Twitter and LinkedIn users, all interacting and scrolling past millions of posts every day. The same can be said for Internet use. How many of us open up our smartphone web browsers and search for solutions to our everyday problems? It’s more than you might think. Google, Bing and other search engines are where people turn for stuff they want and need, and the better a website’s SEO ranking – the more clicks it will receive. So, the question then is if social media and SEO enhance one another, and if so – are there ways to harness the power of social media for more website traffic? Let’s take a look:
Search engine optimisation (SEO) is a collection of activities that website owners and managers can engage in to improve the visibility of the website’s pages on the search engines (Like Google, Yahoo, and Bing). The more SEO boxes which you can tick, the greater the chance of search engine success. As a result, SEO professionals are always looking for new ways to improve page rankings. It is well known that backlinks, loading speed, and quality copy are a few key SEO factors, but what about social media?
Where does social media fit in?
SEO is primarily concerned with a website’s ranking, but search engine pages can also appear on SERPs (search engine results pages). Social media accounts usually link to the page owner’s website, which is where social media users can find out more about the brand. Added to this is the great amount of branded content that gets put out every day, and many of these posts feature links that point back to the website. In contrast, brands can link to their social media accounts from their websites, and can even setup social media feeds. Thus, social media accounts and websites are fundamentally intertwined.
How social media improves SEO ranking
A study was conducted by content marketing automation firm, HootSuite, to assess the effects of social media on website search engine ranking. The results found that there is a correlation between social media engagement and higher SERP rankings. This is not to say that commenting and sharing posts with links improves that page’s ranking, but rather that the organic fallout of a highly popular post facilitates favourable SEO events that ultimately drive a website page up the search results.
Search Engine Watch, international search engine marketing watchdog, shares that, “it is not the actual social activity that matters however what happens as a result of that activity.”
They lay the process out in four steps:
- Popular content that links to a specific web page is shared to a great extent.
- The more the web page content gets seen, the more websites will start linking to it.
- Those additional backlinks are what cause the improved ranking for that page.
- Improved SEO rankings then also have the potential of increasing social media activity.
Ways to improve your social media for SEO
- Edit your ‘about’ sections to include keywords related to your field.
- Respond to any and all reviews on social media and other online reviewing sites.
- Make sure your contact information and address associated with your social media accounts are exactly the same as on your website.
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