Importance of Social Media in SEO: Do Social Shares Really Matter for Ranking

Search Engine Optimization (SEO), in brief, is today’s most promising way to get in front of the target audience. For a business having a presence on social media channels, makes it more visible to the audience who are following them on social platforms. In the era of e-commerce, the entire world is surfing the web somewhere for some reason. Marketers explore new ways to attract consumers through these platforms.

Organic search engine optimization

Marketing is two-pronged now when everyone wants there business to be really visible through paid marketing and social media at the same time it has become obligatory to rank higher in search engines. Ranking better than your competitors and finding a top place in search results is what has become the prime focus of SEO. Similarly, SEO is not that simple now that to stuff some keywords and mislead the search bots. Over the years search engines have become smarter and now they depend on more search signals than simple keywords. In all this context where social media and SEO fits in, is the question.

Social media impact for brands is all gauged with quality of content and quantity of shares. The ranking of products or services, marketed through websites, is yet set with the degree of shares a product or service gets online or through social media platforms. Some more factors determine the social media and SEO value of a business.

Visibility

The first and the important factor is to be more visible over the web. If an online business has pages on social platforms then they do appear in search results. Search any brand with their name and you would find results including their top social media pages. You would see that along with the website links there are video results, and appearance of social media pages such as Facebook, Twitter, and LinkedIn. This makes the verdict even stringer that social media secures the top search space for a business and is a ranking factor. Businesses earn customer loyalty through social media platforms. They publish creative content on social media to attract potential customers to their platform. This visibility and being an active business on social platforms is one of the ranking factors.

Website Traffic Impacts Search Ranking

Social media is the key driver of website traffic today. Almost all of the businesses use links to their website in social media shares. A prime objective of SEO and social media is getting more visibility and attracting more visitors to the website. Social media and SEO can easily spike the traffic to a website and the time visitors spend on the page is also a detriment of search ranking. Users share their content on popular social media websites like Twitter, Facebook, Instagram and more.  This traffic makes a huge impact on the ranking of a website. So, indirectly traffic referral from social media pages helps to rank higher in search engine results. The very trigger to ascertain the effectiveness of social share so is the number of clicks the social posts are getting.

Links from Social Media

Another ranking factor on search engines is the quality and quantity of inbound links. Social media sharing provides the opportunity to get inbound links for a web business. The inbound links that a business gets through social media sharing impact the search rankings.

Social Search

Other than Google and Bing, all the social media platforms are in fact search engines as well. Social media users do not go to a conventional search engine when they search for something. They would search a video right from the YouTube search bar, they would look for hashtags to pull up the relevant information they are looking for. Facebook, Instagram, Tumblr, and Reddit have their dedicated apps that allow the users to search right from their interface. Social search is something which is not dependent on conventional search engines rather have their search and ranking algorithms. This way, social ranking is not all about ranking on Google rather today it’s all about optimized ranking through the web.

Social Indexing

Although it’s very difficult to ascertain that Google and other search engines give importance to social media as a ranking factor. Google’s take on this is very secretive and they do not openly pronounce anything about social media and its role as a ranking factor. But one thing is obvious that Google indexes social content and shows them in search results. This indexing by the Google of social media content proves the role of social media as one of the ranking factors. Today the web is more than a simple search repository of indexed pages. It is now a mix of search bots, apps, social media apps, and dedicated search bots. Ranking on search engines has become more than a well-devised content of keyword phrases and search terms. The web has become more humanoid and realistically social where users do not solely rely on the search results provided by one search giant. They search through multiple channels, follow, share and engage with the social content. This social engagement is the ultimate value that businesses are interested and I would say social is the new ranking factor.