10 1/2 Ways to Take Advantage of “Social SEO”
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“As Search Engines evolve and continue to look for legitimate ways to determine rankings, social media continues to become a more important factor. “Social Media will have two main benefits for companies,” says Benjamin Ard, Director of Social Media for Utah-based internet marketing firm Leadgenix. “First is the obvious interaction that comes when companies are in direct contact with their customers. Benefit number two is the Social SEO aspect where social media links and interaction will count for a lot in SEO rankings.”
Social SEO (a relatively new concept) encompasses the idea that social media links and interaction play a huge part in a website’s search rankings. Search engines consistently give more rankings weight to SEO-type activities that are harder to create. (For example, creating and distributing an infographic that gets shared 30,000 times = good! vs. spending 30 seconds on a social bookmark = not so good.) Because legitimate interaction between business and customer is so hard to fake online, social media authority online holds an increasing amount of weight for search engines.
What does that mean for businesses? It means that even if a company doesn’t gain any perceived benefit from Facebook posts, Twitter re-tweets, orYouTube subscribers, there is immense benefit from having active social media accounts.
How can businesses leverage the emerging advantages of Social SEO? Here are 10 (and ½!) Social SEO ideas every business can implement:
1. Using Brand Name In Posts
Occasionally using your brand name in posts will help Google GOOG +0.06% associate your brand with your keyword posts. Branded posts will also allow for you to be more likely to rank your social profiles for your own company name, which helps companies with any reputation management problems they may run into.
2. Linking Your Social Accounts From Your Homepage
Google, while crawling your website, will notice any social links and immediately associate those social profiles with your company. Posts coming from those linked accounts will help you rank for specific keywords showing up frequently in posts. Google Plus also has its own process for validating a site with a business account.
3. Don’t Go All In
If your hand isn’t right for the pot, don’t go all in. There are hundreds of social media sites to support different communities with varying interests. (Wikipedia lists more than 200.) If your company doesn’t fit the culture of a certain community, don’t join it. Find communities that have the potential to actually be interested in your company and/or industry, not just the ones with the most traffic.
4. Google +
If Google builds it, you should come. Although Google is having a hard time getting people to actually use Google +, they are consistently rewarding businesses that are active on the platform with higher search engine rankings. This is an investment worth making.
5. Tweeting To Get Indexed Faster
Twitter gets indexed faster than your site (unless, of course, you’re CNN or ESPN ). To get time sensitive blog posts indexed faster, publish them immediately to Twitter.
6. Rel=Author Tags
Google is letting you put your mug shot next to every article you write. With each article you publish, you will be ranked as an author. The more publications to your name, the more likely you are to get a higher ranking for your posts, articles, and blogs. Google does a great job of explaining how to set this up for your site here.
7. More Followers Does Matter
It doesn’t matter if it is followers, likes, or circles; more is better. The bigger the audience, the more likely your material (pointing back to your site, obviously) will be shared across thousands of networks. The more shares and retweets, the better your rankings.
The more often you post to social media platforms with industry-relevant content, the more you prove to Google that you’re an expert in your field. The more you can prove to Google that you’re an expert, the higher your rankings will be.
9. Video, Video, Video
The web is becoming multimedia based and if you don’t have an active YouTube channel you’re most likely behind the times. YouTube is not only the second-largest search engine, but it is also owned by Google, who happily rewards your uploads with higher rankings in their search engine. Additionally, visitors who view product videos on a website are 85% more likely to purchase the product.
10. Link Bait
Sharable content gets shares – odd how that works, isn’t it? The more sharable and intriguing your content, the more likely it will be shared and linked back to your site. “Linkbait” such as infographics, videos, memes, and other images are easily sharable and can make a large impact. Blog posts that incorporate video attract three times as many inbound links as blog posts without video.
10 ½. IT TAKES TIME.
Effective Social SEO doesn’t happen overnight. It takes time–your time, an employee’s time, or an outside resource’s time–to make its effectiveness work. You will most likely not see immediate results. Social SEO is a long-term strategy, so stick with it consistently to see the results. There is no doubt, however, that Social SEO is a critical key to the future of online marketing that can move your business in a new and exciting direction.
Additional reporting for this article was provided by Adam Torkildson, PR and SEO Marketing Genius and PR Coordinator for Customer Hook.
Author: Cheryl Conner | Google+
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