Does Social Media really affect SEO? And if it does, what are the possible effects that we need to be aware of so we can tailor our SEO strategies for Social Media? These are essential questions that we need to answer especially with the growing power and influence of Social Media on the world wide web. In this article, we will discuss both the truths as well the misconceptions of Social Media and its effect on SEO.
1.) Facebook and Twitter Posts are not ranking factors
Many people have this misconception that Google indexes all pages on the world wide web. While Google’s reach is unbelievably extensive, the almighty search engine has its limitations. With the number of web pages growing at an exponential rate, Google knows that not all pages that are created possess equal value and some of them are simply useless to searchers. That’s why they designed “Spiders” or crawling bots in their algorithm to help them determine content that provides value to users. The average number of tweet per day is 500 million. If Google is trying to crawl every page in existence, it has to give priority to one thing over another. With so many tweets created, these will be low down on Google’s list of priorities.
2.) Currently, Facebook and Twitter followers do not equate to better search rankings
Google said that it does NOT use signals from social media like number of followers as a direct ranking factor for search. The reason for this is because Google can’t comprehend the connections and internal signals that social sites have which means they don’t have the confidence to put rankings on them. The problem lies in the volatile nature of social sites. Followers are mainly caused by relationships and this kind of connection can change constantly. Google doesn’t have the time to gauge these changing connections as their spiders only visit sites at a limited time.
So does this mean that you should not put any emphasis in Social Media?
Not at all because while there is still no definite relationship between Social Media and search engine rankings, Social Media can still benefit your business in two important ways such as:
1.) Social Media drives traffic to your web pages
Social media is a proven means to increase your content distribution to different audiences. When you engage with potential customers on different social media sites, this helps establish your authority and relevance in your niche or industry. And when your posts are linked to your main website, this drives traffic to your page which results in better search engine rankings.
2.) Social Media helps in brand awareness
Being active in social media enhances brand awareness. Facebook and other social media sites are one of the best avenues to reach out to your potential customers and understand what their needs are. Once you understand their needs, you can better relate to them and offer your product or service as solutions. What’s more, you get to promote your company and brand to a wider and more active audience.
So what does this mean? It means that currently Google does not have a definite system in place to gauge Social Media relevance and use it to boost search engine rankings. However, we cannot deny the fact that Social Media plays a crucial role in driving traffic to your website and fostering brand awareness. So if you ask me whether or not Social Media is important, the answer would be a definite YES. Get in touch today for more advice on how to boost your social presence.