Studies suggest that there are now around 4.48 billion global users active on social media. This equates to 9 out of 10 internet users using social platforms on a regular basis.
With statistics like these, it’s no question that your brand needs to be active and available on social media. Of course, investing your marketing hours in these platforms means you may not have as much time for your other marketing strategies, such as SEO.
This can leave brands feeling torn between the two approaches. After all, social media and SEO are completely separate marketing strategies, right? Actually, no.
Believe it or not, social media is a vital ingredient in your SEO approach. But how could the two be connected, you ask? Read on to discover the undeniable and valuable connection between social media marketing and SEO and how you can leverage your social media strategies to boost your rank.
The Connection Between Social Media and SEO
When it comes to SEO, most brands think of the on-page SEO techniques that make your site perform better. Things like your URL structure, mobile-friendliness, and even meta tags and descriptions.
Looking at these SEO factors, it’s pretty clear that your social media marketing wouldn’t really impact any of these on-page strategies. It does however impact another area of your SEO strategy called off-page SEO.
Your off-page SEO includes all of the exposure your brand receives outside of your URL. These are the factors that help Google determine how ‘popular’ you are online. They then play a large role in where you will appear on the results pages, also known as your ‘rank’.
These off-page techniques include things like gaining backlinks, collecting reviews on your Google My Business page, and – you guessed it – social media marketing.
What this means is that your social media strategies can actually be used to boost your rank, both directly and indirectly. Let’s have a look at the methods you can leverage for this effect.
Link Building Opportunities
Backlinks are the foundation of your off-page SEO approach. They send a message to Google that your pages are valuable to its users by making them appear more authoritative online.
While there are a number of ways you can increase your backlinks social media is a key method to boost your genuine and compelling links in two main ways.
First, you can include your links in your own content by directing customers to your latest blog post or product pages. Even your website link in your profile counts as a backlink in the eyes of Google.
Second, by sharing your content online, you actually increase the chances of other people sharing your pages. In a nutshell, increased visibility = higher opportunity for links.
Improved SEO Ranking Signals
Unfortunately, your metrics on Instagram and Facebook don’t hold any weight on your URL. They can, however, help boost your ranking signals through a little benefit we call engagement.
You see, the more your social media following engages with your brand, the higher the chance you have of Google noticing your popularity. This is because Google pays close attention to your user’s behavior and interactions with your URLs.
If your social media efforts are building engagement with your audience, the actions they take on your website will be much more meaningful. Instead of clicking on your site and bouncing back a few moments later, they take the time to read what you have to share and navigate through your pages.
This holds a lot of weight in the eyes of search engines, making you a prime candidate for those recommended spots.
In order for your content to appear in the SERPs at all, it must first be crawled and indexed.
Unfortunately, due to a massive amount of content online, it can take some time for Google to find, crawl, and file your pages in the index. One of the best ways to speed up this process and improve your chances of hitting the results page faster is to promote your content on social media.
By sharing your content to this platform, you start to collect those links we mentioned above. This gives the crawlers an avenue to find your content. The more avenues you open up, the higher your chances.
In addition, directing people to your content makes Google take notice of your unranked URL faster. It notices the page’s popularity and places more urgency on crawling and indexing that page to benefit more users.
This is perhaps the most common reason brands take to social media. Brand awareness is essential for building any business, whether it be online or offline. Fortunately, this awareness on social media actually helps to improve your overall search demand too!
The more consumers hear about you and see your content, the more likely they are to remember you. They then have the chance to pop your name into that search bar the next time they are looking for your products.
This directly increases your relevance on Google for not only that search, but other queries as well!
SERP Real Estate
Did you know your social media profile appears when users type your brand name into the search bar of Google?
That’s right, having a keyword-rich presence on these social platforms can actually help you take up more real estate on the SERPs. While this doesn’t necessarily boost your website, your brand looks pretty appealing and authoritative to users when it stars in three or four results as opposed to just one.
Key SEO Hints and Strategy Guidance
Finally, your social media metrics and analytics can play a massive role in understanding your audience and guiding your other SEO techniques such as content creation and keyword research.
By observing your social channels and applying data-driven strategies to your on-page and off-page SEO approach, you’ll improve your chances of hitting your target audience and boosting your sales.
This is what we like to call a win-win-win!
Using Social Media Marketing for Your SEO
From helping with your link-building strategy to boosting brand awareness, there’s no denying that social media and SEO are a powerful team. By simply leveraging your social media strategies with these key areas in mind, you’ll be able to build an online presence that both Google and your consumers can’t ignore.
Are you struggling to connect your social media and SEO strategies or simply don’t know where to start? Our team is here to help. Schedule your free strategy session today to tackle your digital marketing needs and leverage the advice of industry pros!