In the not too distant past SEO was centre of the digital world, and everything in SEO revolved around link building.
With the changes which have been made in the industry over the past 12-18 months the focus has shifted significantly so that these days link building is no longer a factor in the game.
Google has got smarter at measuring the popularity of your website: social media.
Many businesses find it hard to understand how important social media is to their online presence (and search engine rankings) these days. It can be difficult to measure (although not impossible, and can seem like a really unusual and intangible way to grow a business.
The truth of the matter though is that a traditional SEO strategy where you build X number of links to optimised pages isn’t going to work anymore and an all-round digital strategy which includes social and is dynamic, engaged, and interactive, is what every business needs.
This is where Social Media meets Search Marketing as the two will merge as part of your digital strategy; why?
1. Link building goes Social
Think about it, if you are using social properly, you are engaging with your audience who are sharing your page, your website, your blogs, your products/services to their connections on their blogs etc. All of this is link building but it is happening naturally. This is why so much weight is out on social links, because people only share your links of they want to. If you aren’t engaging your audience they aren’t going to share your content. Ultimately, it’s down to how well you interact with your audience how many links you build.
2. Online growth
By being social you can grow your online presence quickly and effectively. Now don’t get me wrong, you don’t want to be buying links just to get thousands of followers quickly, this is not effective! But by being a dynamic, approachable brand you can attract lots of new followers and really grow your brand presence!
3. Social signals
You have probably heard the phrase social signals but have dismissed it. These are real though, and are signals used by Google to establish how popular your business is on social media channels. Google look at things such as
- How often do you update your social channels?
- How often do people visit your website via your social media channels?
- How many fans/followers have you got?
- How often do you get engagement on your social channels
- Do you have social sharing available on your website?
4. Get genuine website traffic
A huge percentage of links from SEO link building never brought any traffic to your website, they were often in random places nobody would ever find them. They were just sat pointing at the website purely for the benefit of search engines, after Google realised this and de-indexed handfuls of them at a time many websites got hit hard and lost their ranking positions because they had nothing to fall back on. Social links though have genuine potential, not only do they add real SEO potential but each and every link has the potential to send genuine customers to your website as well as turning that person into a new promoter for your business.
5. Google hates link building & loves social
Ultimately, all of the changes Google have made in the recent past point towards the fact that they hate artificial link building but they love social media. But, the social media needs to be done properly with engagement. Businesses who are spamming their audience with sales updates, use automatic DM’s, not engaging, and seeing no growth in genuine followers are going to get no benefit from social media.
Now is the time for social media, but make sure you have a great strategy in place to get the most from it for your business!