Social media platforms and search engines both represent two very important aspects of living in the Digital Age. Social media platforms like Facebook have billions of active users. Search engines like Google see millions of searches every day.
Digital marketers often operate under the assumption that social media and SEO are distinct, and do not have an overlapping impact on each other. While both are very different aspects of the internet, that does not mean they do not impact each other. There may be several ways that you can boost your SEO efforts with a coordinated social media strategy. The opposite may also be true, which is what this blog will attempt to explore.
Ways Social Media Hurts SEO and How to Address It
Nearly every business today maintains some form of a digital presence. Some of them make use of websites, others use social media platforms, while some only use a domain email server for official correspondence. The point is that there are very few businesses that don’t already have some form of a presence on digital mediums. The problem comes when you fail to effectively leverage your digital presence on a social media platform with your long-term SEO efforts. A careful social media strategy can help drive traffic and engagement with your brand.
However, if you aren’t doing it right, there is a very good chance that your social media strategy is hurting your social media efforts. Here are 3 very common social media mistakes that brands make to the detriment of their SEO strategy:
- Not Leveraging Your Social Media Profiles
- Focusing Too Much on Acquiring Followers
- Not Sharing Content That Encourages Clicks
Let’s take a closer look at these below.
Not Leveraging Your Social Media Profiles
One thing you need to make a habit out of is periodically Googling your brand name. If the only relevant result is a link to your website, you may have a problem. Social media profiles offer a valuable way for businesses to amass social capital and engagement.
But too many brands tend to focus just on sharing content instead of maximizing the potential that their social media profiles possess. While the specifics may differ from business to business, many of the following tips can be a good place to start fixing this:
- Having the same profile picture for all profiles.
- All profiles should have links to your website and other social profiles.
- Optimize your social media bio with relevant keywords and phrases.
- Use markups to share your social media information with Google.
- Update profile to reflect changes in address, phone number, website URL, etc.
If this sounds like too much for your already full schedule, you should reach out to a marketing staffing agency that can source people to do the job for you.
Focusing too Much on Acquiring Followers
Then official word from Google is that they don’t measure social signals when ranking websites and webpages. But unofficially, the credibility of your social media account is very important. Unfortunately, too many people place too much importance on acquiring a large social media following.
However, thanks to social media bots, it is very easy to acquire fake followers, meaning the numbers aren’t as important as they used to be. That’s not to mention all the people, friends, and family you can request or coerce into liking your page. In fact, chasing after followers might earn you a large number of bot followers, which can have serious implications such as:
- Tarnished brand credibility.
- Getting your social media profile blocked or flagged.
- Losing a large chunk of organic followers.
- Having a large low-quality audience.
Not Sharing Content That Encourages Clicks
Since SEO and social media lack a direct connection, things like analytics cannot tell you if you’re getting traffic based on links you shared on social media. However, that does not mean social media can’t drive traffic to your website. Many digital marketers and content creators often find themselves clicking on content shared on Facebook that navigates them elsewhere.
This is where you need to consider whether you are sharing content that encourages people to click on it. The same motivators that drive you to click on a Facebook post will apply to your audience. The post itself will create a few promotional lines as well as the link to a website, webpage, or article.
Here are a few ways you can encourage clicks on the content you share on social media:
- Write an informative piece for a publication in your industry, e.g. engineering staffing agencies
- Publish a post on your website or a business associate’s website.
- Create a definitive white paper that drives links and traffic and promote it on social media.
The problem is, too few brands follow the tips above. Instead, they opt for a basic promotional line like “Check out our new post” or “Check out this article written for So-And-So Magazine”. This isn’t just a boring, worn-out way to do things, but it is also ineffective.
What would work better is adding a quote or an important line from the rest of the content that piques your reader’s interest. You can also try listing the benefits a person can derive from clicking on that post. This will help you earn more clicks and drive more traffic to your website.