How to use social media platforms to improve Google rankings

How to use social media platforms to improve Google rankings

As search engine algorithms become more sophisticated, so do the tactics and strategies designed to help you win a greater share of organic visitors to your site. Social media isn’t considered to be a direct Google ranking factor. But one that contributes to the overall organic search picture. This has become increasingly relevant in the era of E-A-T (Expertise, Authority and Trust). 

Having a solid social media presence can help you connect with your target audience and broaden your brand’s reach. But did you know that it can also be a potent tool for indirectly improving your search engine rankings? That’s right — if you use social media correctly, you can give your website a powerful boost in search engine results. But it takes a bit of know-how to use social media effectively for this purpose. 

This article will shed some light on how social media affects Google rankings and explore the ins and outs of social media as an SEO tool.

What is the impact of social media on Google ranking?

In today’s digital age, it’s no secret that social media can be a powerful promotional tool, but when it comes to search engine rankings, does activity on platforms like Facebook and Twitter really make a difference?

You may be surprised to learn that it actually does—although not in the way you might think.

You see, social media doesn’t necessarily have a direct impact on Google ranking, but it can certainly help in other, indirect ways:

Social sharing can generate more backlinks.

When you share something on social media, you’re increasing its visibility. And the more visible your content is, the more likely it is to be noticed by other content creators and industry influencers. If the content is then found to be useful by these people, they may link to it, which can lead to ranking growth. 

In short, the potential for social sharing to affect rank is determined by how visible the shared page is among potential creators, and if they find your content useful enough to reference or link to it. 

The quality of a page is reflected in its social media interactions

A study, conducted by CognitiveSEO, analyzed 23 million shares and found that those websites with higher levels of engagement (shares, likes, comments, etc.) ranked higher on search engines.

Hence, the more social media interaction a page receives in the form of likes, shares, tweets, and comments, the higher it is likely to rank. This is because high social engagement strengthens your web page’s reputation in the eyes of Google. These social signals often act as “brand signals,” something Google values very highly. 

Using social media can drive more traffic to your site.

A large part of SEO strategy is focused on increasing website traffic. And social media platforms are perfect for referral traffic and driving users to your website pages. 

As more and more people join social media platforms, it’s becoming increasingly likely that your target audience is active on one or more of these networks. In other words, if you want to reach a wide audience, social media is the place to be. 

Plus, when you’re just getting started with SEO, social media can also be an excellent way to attract visitors to your website quickly if you’re going down the paid ads route. While it can take months for SEO to start working, using social media can help give you the traffic, leads and sales you need right away. So if you’re struggling to bring visitors to your website, learning how to use social media could be the key to getting them there.

How to leverage social media for SEO?

Successfully ranking in Google can often feel like a magician’s game of smoke and mirrors, but by making smart moves on social media you can avoid that dreaded bottomless pit beyond page one of Google search. Here are some effective strategies that could help you get your name out of organic search obscurity.

Strategy #1 Optimize your social media profiles for maximum searchability

Why does it matter?

It’s possible that you’ve been using social media for a long time, but have you ever wondered why you aren’t getting the results you want? You may still be doing everything right, but your social media profile may not be properly optimized for visibility and search. 

How to implement this strategy?

Profile optimization doesn’t mean cramming in keywords or resorting to underhanded tactics, but rather making small changes that can have a big impact. Here are a few things you can do to guarantee that your social media profile is properly optimized for visibility and searchability:

Give as much detail as you can to your social media profiles.

Take advantage of the prime real estate available to you on your social networks. Some platforms, like Facebook, provide a lot of room for users to personalize their bios, while others, like TikTok, have a more minimalist approach. In either case, account for all available space and include the most relevant and current information about yourself or your company.

Even if you only have a few characters to play with, do your best to at least include industry keywords, your location info, and links to your website, blog, or current campaign.

Publish content that will earn backlinks

To earn backlinks, post content that is truly remarkable and worth sharing. Think beyond the traditional blog post or article – items such as infographics, visual resources predominantly videos, and research reports tend to perform well on social media and are great link bait. You can use a video maker to create and share visually appealing video content. These types of content when shared on social media can help you attract links from high-authority brands.

Make your profiles and captions keyword-rich

As social media matures, it is becoming more and more search-oriented. This means that keywords are increasingly important when it comes to creating visibility for your posts. Perform keyword research to find your key phrases and use them to tweak your posts for maximum exposure. For example, if you want your brands to come up when people search for “Hawaiian specialty pizza,” here’s a demonstration of how to do that with a Facebook caption.

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Of course, you don’t need to add keywords to every caption or description, but being conscious of those keywords will allow you to include them in your posts naturally.

Strategy #2 Prioritize quality over quantity in what you publish

Why does it matter?

SEO has changed a lot over the years, and search marketing is now very different from what it used to be. The bots and algorithms that power Google’s search engine are constantly upgrading to better comprehend the intent behind user queries, as well as the relevance and quality of the content they’re looking for. 

This is why it’s crucial to ensure your website or blog content is effective for both social media and SEO by creating informative and engaging articles. After all, the more intriguing and helpful your content is, the more likely people are to share it.

How to implement this strategy?

Although pumping out content regularly is vital, it’s quality that counts – not quantity. Take the time to research your materials and produce well-written pieces that resonate with your readers. 

For your content to be meaningful, you need to understand what your readers want, how they search, their buying habits, and other insights that can help you design content that responds to your audience’s needs. So, before you put your fingers to the keyboard, do your research — and then craft content that’ll be relevant and beneficial for your readers. That way, you’ll produce insightful articles that stick with people long after they’ve read them. 

Strategy #3 Make it easy for people to share your on-site content

Why does it matter?

As a society, we’ve become increasingly reliant on social media to share our thoughts, feelings, and experiences with the world. This trend is reflected in the way we consume and share content online. So if you want your on-site content to be successful, make sure you have social sharing buttons integrated into your web pages in some way.

How to implement this strategy?

Add social media sharing buttons to every piece of content you create, whether it’s a landing page, product page, or blog article. If possible, try to make these buttons more visible and easier for readers to find. That way, your readers will have less to dig through and can easily share your content with their own networks. An example of a site that does this well is Quantic, which has social share buttons that follow visitors as they scroll down a page.

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Strategy #4 Equip yourself with the necessary toolkit

Why does it matter?

A social strategy is important if you’re looking to maximize your brand’s reach, but it won’t be worth the pixels it’s written on if your business doesn’t have a solid toolkit for executing that strategy. Without an inventory of reliable, specific tools that correspond to your brand’s goals, your social strategy may fall flat before it even has a chance to succeed.

How to implement this strategy?

If you really want to push past mediocrity and get your social channels in top shape for SEO, then you should definitely consider adding the following tools to your marketing toolkit:

  • Social media analytics tools. If you want to get a complete understanding of your social media performance, you need to track key metrics for each platform. These tools will give you insights into what’s working well and where improvements are needed.
  • Monitoring tools. When it comes to interacting with customers and building brand loyalty, monitoring tools are key. These systems, designed to manage customer reviews, actions, and messages, can be extremely helpful in keeping your brand visible and responsive. 
  • Project management tools. Using versatile collaborative task management tools like Wrike or Monday will help to keep your behind-the-scenes social media processes organized. After all, the more organized your operations are in the backend, the more consistent you’ll be in delivering your messages to your audience and hitting your KPI’s.
  • Social listening tools. These tools also allow you to monitor what’s being said about your brand online and take action based on the insights you gather.

Strategy #5 Outsource your SEO and social media efforts

Why does it matter?

As SEO and social media increasingly intersect, your social media strategy must be integrated with your SEO efforts. But with all the different social media platforms out there, it can be difficult to know where to start and how to maximize your efforts. That’s where hiring a virtual assistant or digital marketing agency can be beneficial. The right agency will help you create a social media strategy that aligns with your SEO goals and helps you navigate the ever-changing world of Google rankings. In other words, they can help you make sure that your social media is actually helping your SEO – something that is not always easy to do on your own.

How to implement this strategy?

There are many digital marketing agencies that can help you with social media optimization for SEO. However, not all agencies are created equal. Here are some things to look for when going over agency social media proposals:

  • Are they proposing strategies that are unique and tailored to your business?
  • Do they have a solid understanding of your target audience and how to reach them?
  • Have they had a good history of helping other businesses achieve success with social media optimization?
  • Is their team made up of experienced and creative professionals who can execute the proposed strategies effectively?

Checking for these things will help you narrow down the field and choose the agency that is best suited to help you achieve your social media goals.

Fire up your Google rankings through social media

The stories of search engine rankings are written in code by an army of engineers and marketers at one end and with millions of businesses fighting to shape their share of the Internet on the other. It is a battle that requires not only the use of advanced technology but also a keen understanding of marketing and customer psychology. Social media is just one of the many tools you need to have in your arsenal to succeed in this battle.


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I'm a growth marketing consultant who helps B2B, SaaS, IT, technology and software companies generate more leads, sales and grow revenue online. I offer expert advice on marketing your company the right way through performance-based SEO, digital marketing, social media, search engine marketing and many other online practices. Connect with me on LinkedIn and schedule a free marketing strategy session!

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