Social Media and the impact on SEO
In times past, search engine optimization (aka SEO) and social media wouldn’t have been used in the same sentence. After all, search engine optimization comprises techniques designed to help boost one’s search engine rank placement and social media sites, like Facebook, allow you to connect with your friends or customers in a “social” way.
However, recent changes by both Google and Bing make it clear that these major search engines are looking to social media sites as a way to validate the quality of the content found on websites. Those that make the grade are being rewarded with improved search engine rankings… even in “regular” search.
While there are some differences in the way Google and Bing are using information from social media sites to adjust their indexes, there are many similarities. The search engines are looking at the “authority” of the account holder and placing more importance on any links posted on sites like Twitter and Facebook.
While the links themselves may be “no follow” links, that isn’t stopping the search engines from adjusting the indexes and increasing the search engine rank placement for the web pages they point to. In fact, some have said that it appears as though “retweets” are the new form of linkbuilding.
Both Google and Bing are looking at the frequency that a particular link is posted (or re-posted) on the social media sites and are also paying attention to who is doing the posting. If your links are being posted by an individual or business that is considered to be an authority by the search engines, the associated web page may see a boost in its search engine ranking.
This development validates what many marketing experts have believed for more than a year now; Social media’s importance is growing in the eyes of the search engines and this trend will likely continue. It’s well known that Google places a premium on relevant content and quality sites and pages so it should come as no surprise that they are tracking the number of people who liked your content well enough to share it with others.
Those who would like to take advantage of these new search engine trends are encouraged to make it as easy as possible for others to share their content or the links they contain. Adding a “retweet” function to your website or blog, for example, can dramatically increase the likelihood that your content will be shared by your visitors via Twitter.
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