The Future of SEO is Social Even Google Agrees!
Search Engines like Google and Bing have been taking into account social shares for the past year or so, just lately Google has stepped things up with their new Social Graph. Check out this announcement by Gary Vaynerchuk as he ‘blows the lid on Social ROI’ and the idea that many businesses just won’t get it.. for the ones that do this is a chance to get way ahead of the crowd before the rest catch up!
Web analyst, Brant Dainow has shared a list of rules for beating Google at SEO, they include the following behaviours, which help your search rankings:
- users who fan, follow or like you
- impressions from social graphs (i.e. users who talk about your brand on social media, including your brand name and marketing messages
- impressions from social graph with links (i.e. links back to your site, social pages and profiles and referring traffic)
- other citations (i.e. links, references from others who are not fans or followers)
- number of visits, clickthroughs..
All online conversations increase the social value of your tribe or community, a busy, noisy hub means higher visibility and accessibility.
The basic principle of search engine rankings has always been strong, relevant content onsite, now this has morphed to how often this content is repeated, shared, cited, conversed about, liked and linked to online conversations. As soon as you build your community page or brand page on any social media site, make sure you include ‘shareable‘ and newsworthy tips, and information that your audience is compelled to pass along to their networks – fractal marketing.
As soon as your audience shares this relevant and remarkable content, your audience instantly expands your digital footprint, brings you more visitors and fans and generates more links to your content profiles, pages and site. It is the sum of all these activities that have a positive impact on your Google rankings (and others), and your content rises higher and higher as your community expands and online chatter grows ever outward via ‘likes’, shares, tweets, conversations and posts.
As Google expands it’s algorithms to include more and more Facebook, YouTube and Twitter realtime results the more important your social media tribes will become. This means it is not so important how cool the technology you are using is, but rather how well your brand is able to build a social community, that revolves around your brand.
Paul Adams, global experience manager at Facebook explains how a simple commitment to value can simplify the way your brand handles social media. “The key,” Adams says, “is to understand and serve basic human behaviour.” By understanding human behaviour and what guides and allows humans to feel able to embrace change is the key to building relationships around your brand, those relationships will become a community or online tribe, and from there will come your brand advocates.
Often marketers do not understand this very important part of social media marketing, focusing on the marketing more than the social. When you take your business onto social media, keep the social aspect in the forefront of all your strategies and plans. If you decide to hire a social media manager, be sure the person you hire understands this too, as more and more ad agencies and marketing firms dip their toes into the social media arena, there is a real chance that just like all humans who find change hard they will continue to use old marketing tactics on new media and fail miserably.
In fact this is already happening, too many old school brands and marketing firms, getting so very wrong on social media platforms, and this lack of shareable content and relationship building skills is going to affect site SEO, big time no matter how many backlinks, on page SEO tactics they use. Social Search is not only here to stay, it is going to be the future of SEO, and it might be time you rethink your beliefs around social media.