by Marcus Smith
The story is always the same. You’re sitting at your desk, or even sitting up in bed late at night and you go to your Facebook page, curious about what’s up with your inner circles. You scroll through your news feed, looking at the funny cat videos, liking your friends statuses, even clicking out to a few stories about your favorite hobby. maybe even accepting that friend request from that old high school frienemy. You figure, “hey, it’s been 20 years, I’m sure they’re not a jerk anymore…” only to find out later you’re wrong. Whether your guilty pleasure is Facebook, Twitter, Google+ or others, what just happened was you sent out a bunch of social signals to the network – and to search engines – about what types of content you prefer.
Especially this time of year as we are most likely shopping for friends and family, have you ever been looking online for a certain product, let’s say a new wok. So you go to Facebook or the like, and all of a sudden there’s an ad on the far right for a new wok?? That’s all based on search terms and social signals. Or, another example would be if you ask in your status, “Has anyone ever used the new William-Sonoma wok? The social network captures that information and uses it to determine demographic interests.
Social Signals for business
By my example above, when you like a status, click on a link, share a photo, etc. you are sending out a social signal. This action helps social networks & search engines determine how you act online, but it can also help with your business online.
If you have a website for your business, you can use social signals to help boost your website traffic and SEO ranking positions. Still today, there are many business that don’t believe in the power of the social network; but let me assure you that they are here to stay and they are powerful. The fact is, that while there are many different variables in building your SEO and website traffic, if you’re not engaged in social media as a way to strengthen your web presence, you will never see the results you want to see.
How do Social Signals help SEO rankings?
There are many different ways to help your rankings, but the social signals is a very strong way to bring the results you’ve been looking for by:
- Number of people who like your brand on Facebook
- Number of shares on Facebook
- Number of Twitter followers
- Number of mentions on Twitter
- Number of people you have in your “circles” in Google+
These are all social signals that search engines “read” when they are crawling your website to determine where it falls in search queries. Therefore, the more social signals you have, the higher your rankings will be.
What About Google+ ?
Yes Google+. The 3rd child of the social networking trinity has been slow to be understood, but maybe the one that needs to be recognized the most. Let’s say you had 3 friends that you talk to and trust. Let’s say they are Frank, Tom & George. They are all very trustworthy, and you speak with them on a daily basis. But George is also family – he’s your first cousin. Not only that but he has an MBA in some really important stuff. Who would you trust more?
While my metaphor is a pretty weak one, my point is that Google+ (George in my allegory) might be the most important social network to focus on with your business, because it fall under the Google platform. With the Google search engine capturing nearly 90% of the market share currently, Google+ might be one you want to hone in on.
Social networks & social signals are hear to stay for the immediate future anyway. So if you’re someone who has rejected the importance of social as a marketing channel, wake up! Social signals are all around us, and they directly affect your web presence and search rankings. If you’re not currently on social media, contact us today for a free evaluation and quote. We can help you as a digital marketing partner to see amazing results from SEO, PPC & Social Media.
Marcus Smith is Digital Marketing Manager & Division Manager for Dallas/Fort Worth. He loves to help businesses see success with websites, SEO/SEM/PPC & all types of advertising & marketing. In his spare time, he loves to spend time with his wife and 5 children; four sons & one daughter.