Clicks on organic links make up about 70% of clicks from searchers online. This means that the “shelf space” that organic links take up on a search engine results page is valuable territory. So, how can your business own more of the shelf space for your business keywords online? Claiming, optimizing, and posting content to business profiles on the top social media sites can help your business own more of this important digital space. Here are a few tips on how to optimize your presence on top social media sites like Facebook, Twitter, Google+, and Pinterest so that consumers find your business when they search online.
Optimize “About” Copy & URLs for Search
When it comes to helping your social media profiles rank well on search engines, the more relevant content you provide about your business, the better. So take advantage of the places in social media where people expect you to talk about yourself, like the “About” section and your URL. Without keyword stuffing, you should update your introduction on Google+, bio on Twitter, and the About sections on Facebook and Pinterest to accurately describe your company. Make the copy in these intros reader-friendly, while using 2-3 business keywords you think people will use when looking for your types of products or services to help it rank in organic search. In addition, provide a link back to your website, which can help create inbound links to your website and boost its SEO. For Google+, you can even link a particular keyword in your introduction back to your website.
Another key to your search rank are the URLs you choose for your social media sites. Each URL should contain your business name so that these sites will show up when someone conducts a search for your business online. On Twitter, your Twitter handle will be your vanity URL, so try to choose a handle that’s as close to your business name as possible. For Facebook and Pinterest, you can create a unique vanity URL through your profile settings. Google+ is still rolling out its vanity URL function, but soon enough everyone will be able to change their vanity URL. Keep your usernames and vanity URLs as consistent as possible to make your social media presence user-friendly, consistent, and scalable.
Craft Social Media Content for People & Search Engines
Did you know that your social messages on your Facebook fan page, Twitter profile, and Google+ page could strongly affect how those pages rank in search? When brainstorming and crafting content for your social media sites, remember to factor in some SEO best practices. Here are a few things to remember for boosting your presence in SERPs:
First, create content that’s entertaining and engaging for social users. Your goal with social media content should be to create emotions that will drive social engagement and shares. The more users interact with your business online, the more authority you create for your business within each social media site. Major search engines look at this authority to determine how your business’ social pages should rank in search engine results. Also, share photos, videos, infographics, and other engaging items on your social profiles, because this can help boost the authority of your profiles.
Additionally, including an important, relevant keyword and your geographic location in your social media content can help drive SEO for your social sites. Don’t use the same keywords over and over again in each social media post, because this can make your content much less reader-friendly, potentially limiting its reach and authority. So be sure to use a variety of messaging techniques, keywords, and topics.
Post Regularly to Your Social Media Profiles
It’s no secret that search engines like fresh and updated content, so post consistently and frequently to all your social media sites to get them to rank on the search engines. Keeping your social sites updated will not only keep the search engines happy, but also your audience. But make sure not to go overboard! Even though posting frequently is important, you don’t want to over-post and irritate your audience. So, monitor and measure your social posts and their results in order to determine the times that work best for your business on each platform. Experts say that on average, it’s good to post to Facebook 5-10 times per week. One study showed that posting to Facebook more than 7 times per week created a 25% decrease in interaction rates. Post more regularly to Twitter, where people can see content in real-time in the feed and has a shorter lifespan. On Twitter, you can try using hashtags, which provide a 21% increase in engagement when used a maximum of twice in a post. For Google+, it’s recommended to post 2-3 times a day, but make sure the posts are spaced throughout the day.
All in all, there are many factors that search engines consider when ranking your social media sites organically. With these tips, you’ll be able to boost SEO results for your social sites and increase the chances for consumers to find them when looking for information about your type of business.
About the Authors:
Ashley Stalnaker is an experienced Web Presence Professional at ReachLocal. Her expertise in SEO and social media marketing make her a valuable asset to her clients at ReachLocal.
Lindsay Paramore is an expert in online marketing and branding for business owners. She also works as a Web Presence Professional for ReachLocal.