Is Social Media a Tool for Your SEO?
Social Media and SEO. The debate over whether or not social media aids SEO has been a favourite topic of conversation for years. Many think that social media may assist SEO, while others believe that it does not belong in the mix.
There’s also a lot of uncertainty regarding whether or not Google considers social media to be a ranking component. And there’s a good reason for that.
Some contradictory statements were made by various Google Team leaders from 2010 to 2016. It was initially claimed that social media platforms have the potential to be a ranking signal, but in 2016, these were updated and it was clarified that it is not.
Today however we know for sure that social networks do not have any direct impact on your Google search rankings. Then the question begs why bother with social media?
There are many ways social media can help your business in regards to exposure, content sharing, increasing traffic to your website, and backlinks. All of these are great signal to boost rankings.
types of social media
There are various types of social media, each with their own specific purpose. And while there’s no clear definition, social media should be commonly understood as any online platform that allows for interaction between users. Some popular examples include:
How Social Media Can Help With SEO
Brand Exposure Awareness
If you have a reasonable social media presence it’s fair to say the potential customers may already be aware of your business. This is probably because they follow you on social media or have seen your posts come up in their newsfeed.
The power of social media is that it allows businesses to promote themselves without having to spend vast amounts of marketing budgets. This marketing tool enables them to reach a wider audience at no cost, which can be very beneficial for small businesses with smaller budgets.
Traffic to Your Website
As a result of social media exposure, more people will click on the links in your pieces of content and visit your website over time. It’s essentially a unique search engine in itself. If a business is having trouble making it to the top 10 SERPs (Search Engine Results Page), they could utilise social media to reach their target audience immediately and inexpensively.
The more followers you have, the more power your account has when posting a piece of content since there are more people to notice it. If customers then engage with that post in terms of comments and shares, it’s likely that their friends will also see it.
Additionally outside of SERPs, driving traffic to your website is an excellent signal to Google that your site is active and has high-quality material that may be useful.
There is a reason that most businesses with even the smallest presence on social media share relevant content. Sharing relevant and engaging content is great for your brand’s image and shows that you’re in line with your target audience.
If they find your content appealing, they will almost certainly spread it across additional platforms. They may also refer to your work by including a link from their website to your web page. Backlinks are an important ranking signal for Google.
Backlinks are links from other websites which point to your site. Most SEO experts agree that gaining high-quality backlinks is a key part of increasing search rankings and help you rank higher, so social media sharing is an excellent way to get these links.
Again as mentioned above, if customers find your content intriguing they will most likely share it across additional platforms and websites.
Social Media Profiles Show Up in Search Results
In 2016 Google announced that social media profiles will now show up in search engine results. When users enter search queries for a business, they may now see their Facebook or Twitter profile as well as their website link at the top of the page.
If you have a well-managed profile on social media, it could potentially appear in the search results. This is known as a “rich card”.
If you do have a profile, it’s important to keep on top of your updates and ensure that the content shared is interesting and original. Ideally, this should be both visual and engaging.
Build Trust with your customers
If your posts are relevant to your customers, they’ll likely share it. As this occurs, you make them aware of other related products and services. This builds trust with your customer base because they’ve already engaged with your brand on social media, they’re more likely to do so again in the future.
Because you’ve earned the confidence of your consumer, they are more likely to interact with you through your website. As a result, you may attract visitors to your page and enhance your conversion rate.
showcase your brand personality
Social Media gives you an opportunity to share your brand personality with your customers as well as stay in constant contact with them.
People interact with you on a more personal level, they see your brand as an accessible and relatable entity rather than a faceless corporation. Customers want to feel like they can connect to a company on a deeper level and social media gives brands the opportunity to do this.
Social Media as a newsfeed
Using social media to draw attention to products or services that a consumer may not be aware of as they don’t visit your site on a daily basis.
Because social media generally is updated daily or weekly it’s also a great way to highlight key products or services you offer. This will create a sense of urgency which can drive customers to make a purchase.
Consumers are more likely to buy from brands they feel they know on a more personal level, so posting on social media can help foster this connection.
Social Media as a Seasonal tool
Social media can be used to create incentives at certain points throughout the year. For example by offering discounts on products, holding giveaways or other sales events that customers may want to share across social media.
This will help build awareness of your brand while simultaneously driving traffic to your website which in turn enhances sales opportunities.
Social media is also an excellent platform to focus on major yearly events like Christmas or Valentine’s Day. During these seasonal occasions, social media may be a fantastic method to boost sales and drive traffic to your site.
In this day and age, consumers expect to be listened to and Social Media enables brands to do just that. If customers have a complaint about a product or service you’re offering, they can share it across social media channels.
Responding to complaints is an excellent way of building trust with your customers as well as maintaining a positive image in their opinion. This is because it’s an opportunity for you to deepen your relationship with consumers by fostering discussion.
It’s also very valuable when you get something right or they share a product review that’s positive.
Customer testimonials and reviews can be shared across social media and they’re generally influential. A good review or endorsement generally prompts other customers to engage with you on social media which in turn may lead to an increase in website traffic and sales opportunities.
social media competitions & giveaways
Running your own social media campaign can be a great way to reach out and engage with your target audience.
Running various competitions that appeal to different demographics is an excellent method of generating engagement across Facebook, Instagram or twitter for example.
By choosing a good prize or free give away you’ll attract the right participants and build brand loyalty among people who interact with you.
Many companies use a competition or free giveaways to encourage visitors to interact with their website. Encouraging consumers to visit and interact with your site by liking, sharing, and subscribing are all effective methods of attracting them back.
Because updates on social media sites are frequent, this is an excellent method to quickly convey a message. Always with the goal of encouraging your user to visit your site and share your material. Social media may be a fantastic way to get people to come back frequently.
Social Media does not provide any direct ranking signals to your Google ranking. However using social media as a tool to feed traffic to your webpage, encourage content sharing and gain backlinks is an excellent way to signal Google you’ve got something to offer.
With all things SEO, there are a variety of aspects to consider. Social media may assist as part of your digital marketing strategy and your ongoing SEO efforts. Leveraged correctly, Social Media could be an excellent addition to your marketing tool kit.
For additional information and a Guide on SEO read this blog post. It covers SEO Tools, Technical SEO, Page Speed, Title Tags, Keyword Research, Alt Text and general page SEO.
If you want to learn more about how Googles new page experience update can help you improve your user experience you can read about it here.