How Social Signals Affect SEO

Do social signals really play a big role in SEO?  We know for certain that social media plays an essential role in increasing website traffic and creating awareness for your brand. But can social signals also improve your rankings? Yes, they can.

Social signals are proven to have a direct and indirect impact on overall online visibility with the search engines. The importance of social media and its SEO influence continues to increase with time as our world becomes more social than ever.

What Is A Social Signal

A social signal can be anything from a tweet that mentions your brand name or shares a link to your website, to ‘liking’ your brand on Facebook, to receiving a number of +1s on Google+.  These signals are more direct and straightforward.

 Other types of social signals that are more indirect include inbound links from creating awareness and increasing positive reviews based on community engagement.

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How Social Signals Work

Direct social signals like a retweet or share will send a signal out to the search engines. These types of signals are seen as recommendations by the search engines, giving them a higher value. A high value signal can greatly affect ranking algorithms and in turn affect your SEO.

 These recommendations and referrals build credibility for your website in the eyes of all the major search engines. Don’t rely on them too much, though. Links still have the biggest impact on ranking and SEO, as indirect social signals work by increasing inbound links from visibility and brand awareness.

What Sites Work

Social signals work best for SEO when they come from relevant platforms. Sites that are currently having the most profound affect on search engines are:

  • Facebook
  • Twitter
  • Google+
  • YouTube
  • Pinterest
  • LinkedIn

Improve Your Social Signals

How can you quickly jump in on the social media train for your SEO? Have a presence with every major social networking site possible and make sure that you have a company blog. Integrate your off-site social media accounts with your onsite blog, linking to interesting content that will engage with social users and get them over to your site.

 Social signals are most effective when you can regularly update both your blog and various social media sites. Hire a blogger and social media guru if you are unable to do spend quality time on these sites.

 The more shares, comments, and likes your profile receives the better. This not only helps SEO but will help get more traffic to your website.

The Future Of Social Signals On SEO

Users spend more time on social networking sites than on search engines. This means it will be critical to have a comprehensive social strategy as time goes on. Social signals could very well surpass inbound links as the most valuable for ranking. There is also much discussion about the authors playing a bigger role in ranking signals.

 With the implementation of Google Authorship, the search engine can track authors instead of domain. By associating content with an author across domains the content will be able to rank higher, really changing the game.

The world is becoming a more social place. Kids today are practically being raised communicating on social networks. Today’s youth is tomorrow’s consumer and young users will become accustomed to communicating with their favorite brands online this way.

Discuss This Article

Comments: 2

  • Andy Black says:

    Some great information here and I agree with it. Social signals is becoming increasingly vital with regards to ranking as its real interaction from “real” people. This can also tie in nicely with Google Authorship as all social accounts can then be tagged and associated with the authors content and sites. Great post.

  • Raja Sinha says:

    I firmly believe that Social signals or mentions etc will have a huge impact on search and ranking. For now, we are seeing some advantages to this already. Keyword competition is also another big reason why only social signals arent as effective already today but am sure more Google algo changes will figure this out.

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