How Does Social Media Impact SEO?

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Use Social Media to Help Boost SEO Rankings

Search engine optimization (SEO) and social media marketing are two strategies that businesses use in an effort to increase brand recognition, build relationships, and increase website traffic. The correlation between the two is often overlooked or misunderstood due to their seemingly separate roles. But it’s a mistake to assume that they don’t influence each other.

Understanding the relationship between SEO and social media will help maximize your potential to reach your target audience in a meaningful way. But certain strategies work better than others depending on the results you want to achieve.

Before we take a deep dive into the ways that social media and SEO influence one another, let’s quickly review how they both function on their own.

What is Social Media Marketing?

Social media marketing is the strategic use of one or more social media platforms to connect with your audience, drive brand awareness, increase website traffic, and boost sales.

Consistently publishing quality content across your profiles, responding to mentions, and using industry hashtags when posting are just a few examples of social media marketing tactics. But remember: consistency and quality are key. Posting a link to your “Contact Us” page twice a month is not an effective way to encourage audience engagement.

There are several social media platforms out there, but the “big four” are:

  • Facebook (2.5 billion monthly users)
  • Instagram (1 billion monthly users)
  • Twitter (320 million monthly users)
  • LinkedIn (260 million monthly users)

Which platform(s) you choose to use should be based on your business goals and your target audience’s behavior. It’s worth noting that the more platforms you manage, the more time will need to be spent monitoring each channel.

With billions of users active on social media daily, it’s no surprise that businesses across the globe have leveraged the power of social media to build relationships with their customers. So, to stand out amongst all the noise, you’ll need a strategy. Check out our blog to read 5 proven social media tips for businesses.

What is Search Engine Optimization?

Search engines play a huge part in our everyday lives. When we have a question or we want to learn more about a topic, it’s so easy to find millions of answers within seconds.

People conduct more than 2.2 million searches per day on Google alone. And users rarely look past the first page of results. So, if you want your new article or product to appear on page 1 of Google search results, you’ll need to know a thing or two about SEO.

Search engine optimization (SEO) is the process of increasing the quantity and quality of your website traffic by using data-driven strategies to improve your organic (or non-paid) rankings on search engines. Here are a few examples of SEO strategies that are used to boost rankings:

  • Conducting a competitor analysis
  • Increasing page load speed
  • Researching competitive keywords
  • Optimizing metadata

This is an ongoing process that requires regular monitoring and updates depending on your business goals. Google frequently updates their ranking algorithm as well, making it essential for SEO specialists to keep a close eye on any changes that may impact their site’s performance.

How Do Social Media and SEO Work Together?

Although SEO and social media are different marketing strategies, their goals certainly overlap. Because of this, understanding how they can impact each other will only serve to maximize results.

There’s an undeniable correlation between social media activity and search engine rankings. And businesses that have taken advantage of strategically combining these two marketing tactics have seen some incredible results. Below are just a few of the ways that SEO and social media work together to create ongoing success for your business!

#1: Increased Search Visibility

Social media contributes to improving search visibility, which helps drive organic visitors to your website. For example, let’s say that you just wrote a new blog. Once the blog is correctly optimized and published to your website, it should be promoted through multiple marketing channels to help generate traffic. Social media is one of those channels that can be extremely effective – and it’s free.

However, simply posting a link to your blog is not enough. Your followers are busy and they constantly see branded content on their timelines. So, why should they click on your link? What value will they gain from viewing its contents? If you want your social media to have a positive impact on SEO, your posts need to be compelling enough to drive action.

Experimenting with visual content is a great way to stand out on busy timelines. Posts with videos and images consistently receive higher engagement than text posts. If you can incorporate a video or infographic into your social post with a link to a page you’re trying to rank for, this is a great way to boost website traffic.

Just make sure that any visual content aligns with the messaging in the link you’re sending followers to. If your visitors don’t see what they were expecting, you risk a high bounce rate on that page.

content audit guide

#2: Better Local SEO

Local SEO is a type strategy that focuses on optimizing your website to rank higher in local search results. If your business has a physical location or serves specific areas, you can benefit from local SEO. But how does social media aid in these efforts?

On your social media pages, you have the option to add your business address. If you haven’t done this already, you absolutely should! Featuring your location across your social platforms will help Google validate that your business should be shown to nearby prospects.

Social media profiles also often show up in organic search results. If your location is listed on your page, search engines will show this information to users looking for local businesses.

So, if you want to show up on the first page of search results when people type research businesses in your industry, make sure your social media profiles are up-to-date with your current location. This will only aid in your efforts to gain more qualified leads.

#3: More Opportunities for Backlinking

Backlinks play an important role in search engine optimization. To put it simply, backlinks (also called inbound links or incoming links) link from one page on a website to another external page. These links signal to search engines that other websites found your content valuable enough to share with their own audience.

But how does social media help with this?

As we’ve mentioned, Google keeps quality content at the top of search results. So, a page that has been viewed and shared thousands of times on social media will rank higher than a page that didn’t achieve the same engagement. And links at the top of search results are much more likely to be shared on another brand’s blog than links that are buried on page 10.

Take this example of a case study from a marketing agency in the UK. After employing SEO tactics like keyword research and link building, they posted an article entitled “What Not To Eat: 15 Unhealthiest Foods On The Planet.” After some time, it went viral on social media. So viral that a famous actor, George Takei, shared it to his Facebook page.

After exploding on social media with 130k+ shares on Facebook alone, the article became the #1 result for “unhealthiest foods” for years. With the link being so widespread, other blog authors took notice and linked back to it in their own content as well. In the next year, the article acquired 70 white hat backlinks.

We’re not saying that you need a famous celebrity to share your blog in order for it to receive backlinks. But we’re definitely saying that the power of social media can be leveraged to boost awareness about new pieces of content.

#4: Increased Brand Awareness

Using social media strategies to increase brand awareness is another way to aid your SEO efforts.

Regularly publishing great new content that speaks to your audience’s pain points will help build trust with your website visitors. But if you’re really looking to boost brand awareness, you’ll need to promote this content.

Gaining brand awareness doesn’t necessarily mean you have to spend money. Organically posting links and eye-catching images on social media is a great way to start boosting brand recognition online. And when consumers recognize your company, they’re more likely to do business with you.

Here are just a few ways that you can use social media to promote your brand and improve SEO:

  • Share links to your new content to drive website traffic
  • Strategically use industry hashtags when posting
  • Keep an eye on trending topics and add to the conversation when it makes sense
  • Tag other brands online to start a conversation and potentially reach their audience
  • Post shareable content like statistics and survey results to promote interactions

Essentially, increasing brand awareness through social media encourages users to follow you, check out your website, and potentially make a purchase. Just make sure you’re regularly tracking analytics across platforms to ensure your efforts are having a positive impact on your website’s performance.

#5: Enhanced Brand Reputation Online

When prospective customers Google your business, you want them to view your brand in a positive light. With 93% of consumers using the Internet to find a local business in 2020, it’s likely that your prospects will research your brand before trying your products or services. What they find online can heavily influence their buying decisions.

Take Control Of Your Online Reviews

So, how can you make sure that people develop positive perceptions of your business? Combine SEO and social media strategies to practice effective online reputation management.

SEO Reputation Management involves managing what the public will see in search results when they look up your business. To do this, you’ll need to identify opportunities to boost rankings of your positive content to bury any negative search results. This way, any negative portrayals of your brand will be more difficult to find.

Social media also plays an important role in brand reputation. If your customers have a negative experience with you, they may take to social media to air their grievances. Responding to them quickly with a solution to their issue can turn a negative experience into a positive one. And since it’s on social media, your followers can see how well you handled the situation.

When done correctly, combining social media and SEO brand reputation strategies can help you avoid lost revenue and improve your relationship with your audience.

Use Both SEO and Social Media to Maximize Conversions

Search engine optimization and social media marketing are both effective methods to reach your target audience and increase sales. Understanding how they influence one another and applying these insights to your marketing strategy can yield amazing results for your business!

Combining highly effective SEO and social media strategies is what BNP Engage does best. If you’re having trouble standing out amongst your competitors, reach out to the digital marketing experts at BNP Engage in Philadelphia to find out how we can help.

Lauren DevensJanuary 28, 2021by Lauren Devens