Understanding the Link Between Social Media & SEO

While you may not realize it, social media is actually an important tool for effective search engine optimization (SEO). This relationship may sound a little counter-intuitive considering they are very different channels. But as a marketing manager, it’s important to understand how the two complement one another. With some research, planning, and mindful execution, you can combine these disparate parts of the digital landscape to boost the overall efficacy of your marketing efforts.

The Relationship Between Social Media and SEO

Social media is a powerful tool for businesses, providing marketing managers with opportunities to keep track of trends and boost consumer engagement. Social media’s accessibility makes it a cost-effective addition to any campaign.

social media channels

However, there’s a particularly strong connection between social media and SEO. Gaining a good understanding of how social media signals boost rankings and how social posts may help you generate backlinks enables you to bolster your strategies.

1. Social media signals

In it’s most basic form, a social media signal is a sign that someone has engaged with your content. While there is still some debate about whether signals directly influence rankings, data indicates that there is some correlation.

When social media users like, share, or comment on your posts, this can make them more visible on the channel. Signals can also suggest to other users that the content is of reliable quality or credibility. In turn, this may drive traffic to your website and other materials in ways that directly influence ranking.

2. Backlink generation

Backlinks are one of the primary tools in the SEO toolbox. Backlinks are created when other websites include links to your web pages in their content. When multiple sites backlink to your pages, search engines can interpret this as a sign that your site is valuable or credible. By promoting content on social media, more site owners and content creators can see it. This means more websites may place backlinks to it as a credible source. As a result, your ranking could experience a boost.

Creating SEO-Friendly Social Media Content

Harnessing the link between SEO and social media isn’t a passive activity. While signals and backlink generation can help, your marketing team still needs to take an intentional approach to these elements. One of the primary ways to do this is to create content that both reflects solid SEO best practices and boosts the engagement of social media users.

seo-friendly content

1. Keyword usage

Keyword research should be performed not just related to popular search engines, but you should also consider how users look for information on social media. This research allows you to optimize the relevance of the keywords. Don’t just place these mindfully in the body of your content, though. Be sure to incorporate keywords in the post-text when you share the content on social media. It’s also important to include keywords in any hashtags you use.

2. Optimizing format

The format you ultimately choose for your published web content is a vital consideration for SEO-friendly social media content. After all, there’s a scrolling behavior culture on social channels, so the format needs to be able to stop the scroll and encourage the engagement that leads to social media signals and backlinks. For written content, this should include elements that support readability, such as white space. For videos and podcasts, it should involve eye-catching thumbnail graphics.

Leveraging Social Media for Content Promotion

One of the primary benefits of social media for SEO is how effectively it can drive traffic to your website, video streaming channels, and other key assets. Nevertheless, simply posting your content on social media doesn’t guarantee engagement. You need to adopt strategies that use the key advantages of social media to effectively promote your content, thereby maximizing the cumulative impact.

1. Build influencer relationships

Influencers tend to cultivate groups of engaged followers. Niche micro-influencers (10k to 50k followers) also maintain positions of trust and their recommendations hold weight. Building collaborative relationships with influencers can boost your content promotion, encourage meaningful engagement from relevant audiences, and strengthen SEO campaigns.

2. Engage meaningfully with users

Part of your strategy for promoting your content should include taking the time to genuinely engage with your social media followers. Interact with them when they leave comments beneath your posts and get involved in conversations about your content topics. These interactions encourage interest in your other SEO content and sharing of your posts.

Monitoring Social Media Metrics for SEO Insights

social media metrics - divvyhq analytics

DivvyHQ’s Social Media Metrics Dashboard

Making the most of the link between social media and SEO isn’t just about applying general tactics. It’s an ongoing process of assessment and adjustment. A data-driven approach to social media marketing enables you to make more informed decisions about your SEO campaigns. This process involves gathering metrics from various sources. Social listening results, engagement data, and website traffic — among other metrics — can give you actionable information to better direct your strategies.

1. Gather post-engagement insights

One of the benefits of employing social media in your SEO campaigns is that you have access to real-time engagement metrics for each of your posts. Regularly keep track of such data as likes, shares, and even click-throughs to content or products. Listen to what users are saying in their comments about your content and brand. These insights can help you to better understand what content is genuinely resonating with audiences in ways that impact SEO rankings.

2. Assess referral traffic

Referrals from social media posts to your website content are important actions that directly impact your search engine rankings. After all, these are among the aforementioned social media signals that can suggest authority. Therefore, it’s important to regularly review your website metrics via a content analytics platform to identify where traffic is most commonly being directed from. Look at which of your social media posts are generating the most referral traffic and how these differ from those that aren’t performing so well.

The Connection is Meaningful

There’s a strong connection between social media and SEO. Social media signals contributing to rankings and generating backlinks are just the tip of the iceberg. It’s important to use these tools intentionally by both creating SEO-friendly social media content and using the features of social platforms for effective promotion. Remember that maintaining good rankings using social media is an ongoing process that can be most effective when it’s data-driven

Start improving your campaigns today by examining your social media data with an SEO mindset and identifying areas of focus to boost engagement.

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