When it comes to SEO, how important is your social media strategy? It’s an ongoing debate. In 2014, Google’s Matt Cutts proclaimed that “social signals,” like posts on Facebook and Twitter, have nothing to do with Google’s search algorithm. This directly opposed what many industry specialists believed at the time. In fact, numerous SEO experts still argue that social media influences search rankings, even if “social signals” aren’t really a thing. Jasmine Sandler, an experienced digital marketing consultant, is one of these experts. In an article published on Search Engine Journal this month, Sandler states, “It’s still undeniable that a proper social media strategy – both paid and organic – is critical to help increase your rankings and overall search visibility over time.” Sandler’s article, “3 Ways a Solid Social Media Program Can Increase SEO Rank in 2017,” demonstrates how a thoughtful social media strategy can have a positive influence on your web visibility.
1. Social Media Strategy Establishes Your Brand
The first way Sandler says social media impacts SEO is through branding. Having an active and strategic social media presence can help you establish your company’s personality, service offerings, and overall mission. “The brand equity and strength behind what the company is selling is what ultimately converts consumers,” Sandler explains. “After all, people buy for two simple reasons: trust and likeness of a person or a brand.” In other words, highlighting your business’s personality and gaining your audience’s trust will put you on the right path toward attracting new customers. As people become increasingly aware of your brand, they’ll visit your website, google your company name, and even refer you to other people. This uptick in demand for your business will surely be picked up by Google’s search algorithms.
2. Social Profiles Appear in Google Results
Have you ever searched for a local business and noticed their Facebook page, Twitter page, or LinkedIn profile in the results? It’s very common for social profiles to appear at the top of search results pages. As Sandler points out, this could have a big impact on how users perceive businesses. For example, if they google your business and find an inactive, incomplete profile in the results, they’ll be disappointed. They won’t perceive you as established, and they’ll be wary of your lack of followers. This could prompt them to keep searching and find a local competitor—one that seems more legitimate—instead. On the other hand, they might google you and find a Facebook page that has engaging content, lots of likes, and a positive rating. Once they’re impressed with your Facebook page, they’re more likely to click over to your website. The more people who visit and spend time on your website, the better your SEO ranking.
3. Social Platforms Have Their Own Search Functions
Finally, Sandler explains that social platforms like Facebook and LinkedIn have intelligent search engines of their own. And, as we know, people are increasingly using social media, primarily Facebook, to learn about businesses. So, if people are searching for businesses on social media instead of Google, it’s all the more vital for you to have your social profiles set up. If your profile doesn’t have a good description of your company with certain keywords, users won’t discover you. Or, what if they do discover you and find a lackluster profile? They probably won’t be intrigued enough to click to your website. The function of your social media page is to keep people interested so they visit your website. The takeaway? If your ultimate goal is to drive more people to your website, a sound social media strategy will make that possible. We encourage you to check out Sandler’s full article for more details and social media tips!