There’s been much discussion around the impact of social signals on search engine results. One thing’s for certain–Every social media platform that your business is represented on, where you regularly engage and interact with your target audience, can have a positive impact on your company’s ranking on the search engine results page (SERP) and for your organic SEO. In fact, social media marketing should be part of your company’s comprehensive digital marketing strategy as it can positively influence your rankings, in the following 4 ways:
1. Social Sites Can Be a Source of Website Traffic
It’s proven that timely, relevant content on your social media sites drives engagement and fuels conversation around your brand and business. Interesting social content gets “liked”, commented on, and most importantly–shared! This sharing may be within other social sites, via email, in an online presentation, or used in other website content. Popularity and buzz around your brand fuels interest and drives traffic to your website. Those that visit your site clearly have an expressed interest, and for that reason they’ll likely spend more time browsing rather than be an “accidental” visitor. A popular company or brand that’s the subject of social discussion, that has many external links back to its website, and consequently, a lot of traffic, is likely to rank more favourably in organized searches.
2. The Nature of Social Content Triggers Interest
Social media marketing makes great use of multimedia, such as videos, images and infographics, to quickly and effectively engage an audience. The content is delivered in an easy to digest format and resonates with audiences more so than plain text, thereby making this type of media easy to share, repost, or re-tweet. Each interaction with your company via social media channels sparks interest in your company and increases the probability of users clicking on the direct links back to your website. Increasing your overall shares generates more search traffic.
3. Opportunities to Engage in Trending Discussions
Social media is a terrific platform to spark conversations with targeted audiences, and the potential reach is vast. You can start by asking questions and engaging your audience in discussions around trending topics, and using hashtags as a strategy to interact with sizeable (and new) audiences. Trending topics generate a lot of buzz, and being involved means that your brand is gaining exposure. When participants share your posts and tweets, not only is your message getting out there, but your company’s popularity and relevance in relation to that topic is also growing. When those same topics are typed in search engines, you’ll likely appear. Increased awareness of your brand does great things for your SEO rankings.
4. Social Media Engagement Leads to Quicker Indexing of Content
If a higher ranking on the SERP is your objective, then having highly relevant, original, and interesting content, both on your website and social media sites is a must. Social media may help your organic SEO results because content that’s shared on your social sites–especially on Google’s very own social network, Google+ –can result in this content being indexed in the search engines more quickly. Social media marketing plays an important role in fueling your presence on organic search. If your business is considering a comprehensive digital strategy that will help boost your company or brand’s popularity and position on the SERPs, then you should consider this quote by Sonia Simone, co-founder and Chief Content Officer of Copyblogger: “Google is like a mean high school girl” – you can’t just approach her and assume she will let you sit at the head of her lunch table… those in her circle must “like” you first.