Social media marketing and search engine optimisation are two popular forms of Internet marketing. In fact, for most businesses, they play a major part in their overall marketing and communications plans. One of the most common questions people have concerning these topics is “Does social media benefit SEO efforts?”
The answer is “yes and no.” While this seems like a frustrating response, when you understand how the two can work together, you can find ways to make your Internet marketing even stronger.
What Google Has Said
Earlier this year, Matt Cutts said that Google sees Facebook and Twitter pages like other Internet pages, crawls the content when it can and returns the pages as search results. But, he went on to say that Google’s algorithm doesn’t specifically use things like number of followers or “likes” to determine how to rank a social media page.
Google never comes right out and explains its algorithm in full, but these statements do tell us a lot about how the search engine takes social media into account as it ranks pages.
Keep in mind that some social media sites, like Twitter, use no follow links, so they aren’t the best solution for link building strategies.
Should I use Social Media for SEO?
However, social media could help your SEO strategies if your goal is to get your social media pages and mentions ranked by Google. Working to promote your brand on social media could mean that social media pages related to your business will get higher rankings.
While you shouldn’t rely on social media to build links to your site, you can use it to promote your content and generate some earned links. If people see your content on social media, they may be more likely to link to it from their own website or blog, which will help your SEO efforts.
Social media can also help you drive more traffic to your website and encourage engagement, two factors that may also influence your search rankings.
Social Media and SEO Produce Similar Results
With all this discussion about social media and SEO, it’s important to remember that both tactics can be used to produce similar results. While they can’t always work together, they can both be very beneficial.
For example, if your goal is to increase traffic to your sales page, you could do this with social media, SEO, and in most cases, a combination of both. Other benefits that both strategies can bring include increased awareness, site engagement, more email subscribers and more sales.
Remember that while social media and SEO can help you accomplish different goals, they can also help you achieve similar things. When you can work toward marketing goals with more than one tactic, your results will often be better.
The complicated answer to this question is that while some social media factors don’t impact search rankings, social media can be used to supplement SEO campaigns. Use both of these tactics to reach your market, raise brand awareness and increase site traffic.