Monday, July 06, 2009

How Do Social Media Sites Help Your SEO?

Social MediaOne of the biggest questions on the minds of website creators and such these days is how much do social media sites like Facebook, Twitter, Myspace, Digg, YouTube and others affect the SEO for your website? The most important thing you can do for your website and your business is to create a crawler-friendly website that uses the keywords that most people use in their internet searches. Doing this helps people to find the products and services you are offering. But that is only half of the job. You also need to put good content on Social Media sites like blogs. Then you have to engage in communication and promotion through these sites which can create a lot of synergy.

Basically, with SEO you want to build your website so search engines can read your websites for certain keywords that people are looking for when the search engines send out their web crawlers. Social Media sites are probably one of the best ways to promote your website, product or service. You need to involve social media sites by creating good content, interacting with it and promoting it. Social media sites are one of the easiest and fastest ways to get your content out to the public. YouTube has done this for many companies, most notably the company Blendtec, whose YouTube videos of a man blending different interesting objects has gotten over 3 million views per video with some videos reaching over 6 million views.

People used to be all about getting their web page links on sites like Digg and Reddit. But now the tide has turned and many companies, including some very large and productive ones, are using sites such as Twitter, Myspace and Facebook as PR sites for their content. In the SEO community, it is believed that social media sites like these will be a major source of ranking signals of future search engines. What this means for SEO is that the breadth and depth of different skills and tactics that are required to succeed in an SEO project is growing. This just means that a plethora of added data for search engines to use which is good for them. However, this makes an increased challenge for SEOs.

Companies that are looking towards the future are investing in social media sites for a number of different reasons. Some of these reasons include gaining a decent advantage over rival companies through the relationships that are built, content created, and capturing the mindshare. This provides a distinct advantage to companies using social media sites to connect with their customers. In a survey of the Top Digital Marketing Tactics for 2009 by TopRank Blog had 6 out of 10 tactics being Social Media tactics.
1.) Blogging - %34 - Social Media
2.) Microblogging(Twitter) - %29 - Social Media
3.) SEO - %28
4.) Social Networking Participation(Facebook, Myspace) - %26 - Social Media
5.) Email Marketing - %17
6.) Social Media Monitoring and Outreach - %17 - Social Media
7.) Pay Per Click - %14
8.) Blogger Relations - %12 - Social Media
9.) Video Markketing - %10 - Social Media
10.) Social Media Advertising - %7 - Social Media

Marketingsherpa's Study of Social Media Marketing and PR reported that social media was top marketing budget item for an increase in 2009. This is likely so due to the benefits offered by the different social media sites like build thought leadership, improved recruiting, improved search engine rankings, influence of sales, improvement of customer relationships, reduced customer service costs, and an increased media coverage. The use of social media sites for companies is new ground for most. But promotion is one of the most important things you can do for your content. Bottom line is that the companies that take the time to invest in finding out how to best utilize social media in their websites will have a definite advantage over those companies who don't.

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