What has social media have to do with SEO, search engine rankings and Page Rank?
Now, more than ever, it has much to do with those key strategies.
If you haven’t been using social media consistently (or at all) because you think it’s a waste of time, I’ve got news for you. You need to start devoting more attention to it immediately.
What you need to focus on building online is your authority. I know, not new, but I’m talking about a shift in focus.
Social media is a fast growing ranking factor, particularly with Google.
What’s being shared online gets better rankings in Google today and it will get even more weight tomorrow. (The latest algorithm update, referred to as Panda, was just the beginning.)
“We’re continuing to work on additional algorithmic iterations to help webmasters operating high-quality sites get more traffic from search.” Google Webmaster Central
What’s shared on Twitter counts, and of course Facebook counts, too, but Google’s search bot can only search the public portion of Facebook. Your profile is not public, but your “page” is. A link that gets passed around on people’s profile pages will not be credited on search engines. However on Facebook pages, sharing links is counted by search engines as a positive ranking signal.
Now that you can interact as your Facebook Page on other Pages, it’s important to do that. Simply login and choose to “Use Facebook as Page” under your “Account” tab. Visit other pages, leave relevant comments and start spreading the word about your page. If you have a blog, make sure to hook it up to feed into your Page also.
Twitter, LinkedIn, Facebook, Google+ and other social networking sites are all part of the social ranking algorithm being used by Google.
If you’re not actively sharing your links on the social networks, you need to start.
Publicize your content and establish yourself as an authority in your niche — strategically — because it counts for your SEO score much more than you might think.
Social media SEO is becoming more and more important and it’s going to have to be a part of your plan. If you’re not using social media, it may end up that you won’t be able to rank at all on Google.
Okay, so why am I saying it’s more important now than ever before?
Google has received a lot of flak about all the spammy sites that are ranking well in results. So, the tech engineers have been working unceasingly on figuring out how to eliminate those worthless sites. Most recently, there was the Panda update. It shook a lot of stuff off the search results. But there’s more.
Even the number of backlinks, which have been heavily weighted in the search engines for years, didn’t work as well as intended.
Spam blogs and sites build backlinks like there’s no tomorrow. They’ve got the whole process down. If you have a blog, you probably know exactly what I mean. Even spam comments are getting more difficult to recognize. They are often “real people” that actually type a comment, mention your name and say something about the post that’s correct. But they are still spam comments leading to spam sites.
So, if backlinks aren’t going to be working as well as before, what’s next?
It’s something Google is talking about and the new buzzword is “Author Authority.”
Google will establish Author Authority through what’s being shared on the social sites. That’s one of the reasons Google built Google+, and Google +1.
If your content is being shared on the social spaces by real users, Google will consider it more valuable. By the act of others sharing your content, it goes beyond the “spammy” or even the questionable label. Hopes are that spammers will have a hard time competing with that. People don’t share spammy sites with friends.
The effort is all about returning the best results to searchers.
Google wants real content.
What do you think? Are you actively sharing your content where it counts? Do you understand the importance of Google’s focus on Author Authority? Any questions? Let me know!