Social Media and SEO
Everyone is talking about Social Media and using it for their business. The benefits are pretty clear; you should be using social networks to market your organization, but how does that affect your search engine ranking?
Links from relevant and important sites have always been a great way to get traffic & acceptance for a website, but how does Google rate links from platforms like Twitter and Facebook to your website?
Google treats all links the same. They take the page rank of a site (which shows how reputable the site is on the Internet) and use that to calculate how much a link from the site is worth (granted, there are dozens of other calculations that go into this, but this is the basic idea).
If thousands of websites link to your site, you’re going to have a high page rank. This doesn’t have anything to do with keywords and hardly anything to do with the content of your site (although it does, who would link to you unless they had a good reason to). Google gives you a score of 1 through 10 and calls it your Page Rank. It doesn’t matter if the links are coming from a .gov, a .com, a social network, a blog, etc. Of course, Google can only follow links it sees; private Facebook accounts probably won’t be followed, although you may still be getting traffic. Twitter is known for applying a tag to links that often Google cannot follow. This may seem like bad news, but the reality is that you are simply taking advantage of two separate systems to earn traffic.
Any social marketing campaign should have the ultimate goal of engaging your followers, which in turn will get them to your site at some point. Google (and the other search engines) will certainly find your Twitter feeds and Facebook pages which can show up in organic search, although chances are they don’t directly affect your page rank very much. Still, social media is a fantastic way to improve customer relations and get viral, and even if it doesn’t help your rank all that much, it’s still a great, targeted source of traffic and a means to communicate directly with your customers.