For the last year the top search engines have been slowly altering their algorithms to include social signals; and n Wednesday last week, search engine giants Google went one step further with their announcement to invite social networks and platforms to integrate their activity streams with Google Analytics.
It is hoped that by social media marketing platforms and networks integrating with Google Analytics, businesses using social media networks will be able to have a clearer image of “off-site” engagement, allowing them to measure more easily and effectively the impact each social network offers their business.
Here at JE Consulting, we’ve always been big believers in the theory that social media marketing done correctly can have a huge impact in the promotion of your business and in reaching your target audience; and thanks to this planned upgrade by Google, brands and businesses alike will be able to see for themselves quantitative data of how their campaign is progressing on various platforms.
So why are social signals so important for both social media marketing and also the SEO of a website?
A social signal is an indication of relevance for your website and importantly the signals are in real-time, giving businesses a clear idea of how they’re performing online, whilst also helping search engines rank and position various websites.
Previously, to improve a websites SERP webmasters would look to buy back-links – a method which is generally considered “black hat SEO”. However, with algorithms changing to place more importance on social signals, the playing field has been levelled somewhat, with mentions, retweets, Likes and +1s playing a vital role in how a search engine ranks any given website.
Now that we know that social signals can help your website climb the rankings and gain increased exposure, making it beneficial for SEO and social media marketing; you need to know how you can, as a business go about improving the signals that you give out?
There are a few simple steps which can be taken to improve you social signals, including:
• Implementing the +1, Like and Tweet buttons onto your website and blog; allowing visitors to share the content. You can also go a step further by adding the buttons to your email signatures.
• Taking the time to engage with your followers and those who share your information. Whilst to start with this will be based more on a business relationship, it’s important to remember that it is a two-way conversation and who knows, over time you could end up tweeting each other about allsorts, from the football scores to the latest film and music releases.
• Engage with “authoritative” social media users within your sector, if they share your content you’ll see your search engine rankings begin to improve.
Improving the social signals given out via your social media marketing campaign isn’t going to be a quick fix to climbing up the search engine results or to having a sudden surge in followers, retweets, mentions and Likes. But overtime, it will improve and your business will begin to reap the benefits, for now though remember social signals are seemingly the way forward for effective SEO and social media campaigns.