Findings are unclear as to whether or not a Facebook page, Twitter account, YouTube following, or other social media presence is contributing to your rankings with search engines. Sometimes the results say they do. Sometimes they say “don’t even think about it.” Obviously, social media is something a business should have, but why? Does it have to do with rankings or something else?
Using Social Media to Improve Rankings
Even if Google doesn’t think as much of social media as we thought, Yahoo/Bing’s algorithms are different. Their standards for raring websites and companies differ enough that your social media campaign could still be relevant in this sense to the many hundreds of thousands of consumers who prefer Yahoo/Bing or another search engine as opposed to Google.
Firms sometimes use their websites to attract consumers to social media for other reasons. While the website lists a giveaway, free sample, contest, or coupon, customers must visit a link to Facebook in order to participate. The website draws readers in with a promise then redirects them to social media for more information. They return to the website, deal in hand, ready to shop or just prepared to “like” a firm in exchange for free sample packs of tea. Search engine ratings are improved by the honing of a site’s audience down to those seeking discounts on specific products, and when an audience is precise, they are more likely to shop. Otherwise, their search terms would be more general.
Filtering the Facts
Information suggests that social media plays a part, but perhaps an indirect part in raising one’s internet status. What you see in reality, however, is that many of the results are links to social media posts. How can that be and ranking not be affected by social media? If something a client said on Twitter is ranked higher than a real website from the competitor, there has to be something about social media that is working in a firm’s favor.
What is that advantage? It might not be the Twitter account, providing increased amounts of original content for a search engine to find. It could be that something inside the content led a search engine to this listing. Its relevance was undeniable.
That is why an SEO professional will recommend that clients use social media wisely. Do not merely start a page and leave it, thinking its very presence is providing additional reasons for Google to consider yours a legitimate business.
Add content every day or at least every week. Keep it regular and network with clients using this tool. Meanwhile, it is possible that your own account will not be the source Google finds so interesting; it could be a link to your business on a follower’s account. Give readers reason to list these links.
Using Social Media in Other Ways
Let’s forget about Search Engine Optimization for a minute and simply talk about how consumers use these web pages to the advantage of businesses. Once a reader is familiar with a company, social media encourages conversation; a one-on-one relationship between client and business. Customers start to like the people who make boxes from recycled materials, hand-knitted clothes for 18-inch dolls, or import spices and foods from the Middle East for adventurous cooks to purchase online.
Business people are simply warm-blooded human beings now, not cold-hearted money-makers. Social media encourages these clients to share with friends and to “like” a business so that the customer’s followers are also tempted to “like” the business.
There is a domino effect when Facebook, YouTube, Twitter, and Instagram are used effectively, whether rankings go up or not. Some companies even feel as though they don’t need a website; one of these pages plus word-of-mouth is helping them become successful without the additional expense of web hosting.