You’ve been hearing so much about how social media can help you market your brand online. At this point, you’re probably wondering if having social media pages can help you achieve better SERP rankings and if so, how.
Okay, first things first. There can be no straight YES or NO answer to the question of whether having social media pages can help you achieve better SERP rankings. Remember that SEO is a complex process that involves various algorithms and variables to determine site rankings for particular keywords and query terms. Keep in mind as well that social media is a dynamic online platform that necessitates constant engagement and interaction with your audience.
That being said, having social media pages may not really help improve your SERP rankings, but there are a number of things you can do to leverage your social media pages to achieve better search rankings. Let’s take a closer look at how social media can help improve your SEO/SEM performance.
Have you noticed how Facebook pages have started showing up on Google search results? This tells you that Google’s crawlers are now picking out names, categories, and other keywords in Facebook pages. It is therefore a good idea for you to create a Facebook page if you haven’t done so already and to maximize the chance of your page landing on top of Google’s search results. Make sure you fill out all applicable fields in the “About” section of your page and that all information provided is accurate.
You should also make sure your Facebook page is always active. A number of studies have shown that there’s a high correlation between SERP rankings and factors such as social shares, likes, and comments. Google’s recent algorithmic updates show their commitment to giving users the most relevant and valuable results when they do online searches. When your posts are widely shared and talked about on social media, Google is likely to deem it of more value than other pieces of content on the same or similar topics.
Of course, the best way to get more people to like, share, and talk about your posts on social media is to always provide them with high-quality content. Each post should answer a question your audience may have, address one of their pressing concerns, or cover a topic they’re currently talking about. Needless to say, each post should also be written in an interesting and engaging manner to encourage further discussion and social sharing.
When Google’s social media arm was first launched, it didn’t really take off as expected. After all the Google updates, however, online marketers saw Google+ becoming more and more valuable for SEO. The amount of reviews and +1s your Google+ page has now affects your Google search rankings. An active page on this platform is also very helpful in terms of local SEO, particularly when a user is searching while logged into his Google account. You may also have noticed that recent activities on Google+ are now prominently displayed on search results.
The best thing for you to do to maximize the benefits of this platform is to claim your Google+ Local page so people can easily find you. It is also a good idea to use the embed link feature of the editor tool each time you post content on your page because Google only indexes embedded links, not the links that are in the content itself. Incorporating keywords and hashtags into your posts is also a good idea, as it can possibly increase your search rankings. Be sure to link each piece of content you post online to your Google+ profile as well for Authorship purposes, considering Google now places more value on author rankings.
Social media users have recently become fond of “checking in,” which basically involves announcing where they are at a particular moment using Facebook, Yelp, Foursquare, or any social app of their choice. Whenever someone checks in at your place of business using any social platform, note that they’re not just telling their friends of their current location, but they’re also confirming your business location to Google’s algorithms. This is very important, particularly for local SEO.
Be sure to encourage your social media followers to check in whenever they visit your business. An excellent way to encourage check-ins is by offering rewards. For example, you could give out a discount coupon or free product/service for every five check-ins done by a customer. Of course, you’ll have to put a system in place to monitor the number of check-ins your customers make.
As mentioned earlier, it’s not enough to have social media pages. Remember that Google and other search engines don’t accord the same value to all social pages. If you want your page to be deemed of high value, you’ll have to establish a strongly positive social reputation. This means it’s not enough for people to constantly talk about your page and your brand; you have to make sure they do so in a positive light.
Always engage with your audience in an authentic way so they’ll see you as not just a brand, but something that genuinely wants to give them both what they want and what they need. Visit other social pages as well and participate in relevant discussions. This not only shows your expertise in your niche, but can also be a way for you to show respect to other authority figures in the industry. Positive associations with authority pages can help you gain valuable links and references that search engines may consider in determining your SERP rankings.
Social media is now generally seen as a good way for people to vote for or against brands and websites. Such vote is increasingly seen as a major factor for determining how well a website ranks on search results. SEO and social media have truly reached a point where they essentially work hand-in-hand. SEO helps you reach your target market, and social media helps you connect with them. So, what are you waiting for? Start leveraging your social media pages to gain better search rankings now!