Using Social Media to Improve Website Rankings

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For those interested in application development and mobile app marketing, SEO is key to driving traffic to a website. Michael Fleischner shares his tips on SEO to enhance the mobile app promotion strategy for app and software developers.

With the pervasiveness of social media, search engines have identified another way to evaluate Web page authority and determine search engine placements.  According to a recent Infographic from Social Media Graphics, 86 percent of those aged 18—29 use social media websites, so it’s no surprise that search engines use social signals to influence rankings.

There are a number of ways in which social media can influence a website’s ranking.  Using social networks can result in a large number of quality links to a website, blog, or other Web-based asset such as a video or image.  According to research done by Dan Zarella, a social media scientist at HubSpot, social sharing has a positive relationship to incoming links pointing to a URL.

How to Leverage Social Media

The best place to begin is by creating an account on the top social media websites.  Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, Google+, and Pinterest allow users to register and complete individual profiles.  Many of these sites also allow businesses to create their own company profiles, increasing exposure and value.

 When setting up an account, don’t forget to add a link back to your website using your company name or chosen keywords and URL.  Once registration is complete, you’ll have provided search engines with the initial signals needed to indicate that you are now part of the social landscape.  Where most people fail is either not completing their profile thoroughly or abandoning their account without creating any content.

From a search engine optimization perspective, there’s certainly value in creating an account on social networks, but due to the immense popularity and number of registered users, the authority that passes to another website or blog may be minimal.  To get the most from social media, you must focus on content development and distribution which is then shared and bookmarked by others.

Build a Following and Share Content

Once you’ve stepped into the world of social media, the next step is to build a following and share valuable content on a regular basis.  If you have valuable information to share with your target audience, regardless of the frequency in which it’s distributed, your search engine optimization value increases.

Growing your list of social media followers is an important part of leveraging social for search.  This is because the people in your network become agents of distribution, helping to distribute content and build inbound links through link sharing and bookmarking.  As you post updates, share information, or make announcements, individuals in your network share that information with others.  More importantly, they may link to the information and resources available on your website.  As more people share your content and provide links back to your website, search engine rankings improve.

By providing content of significant value on your own website and sharing with your targeted audience via social media, you are leveraging social for improvements in search engine rankings, which we all know are largely influenced by the number and quality of inbound links to your website.  As you receive more inbound links via the social channel, they give your search engine rankings a boost.  Develop content that others want to promote, and make it easy for them to share.  When you do, you’ll be using social media to influence search results.

 This is a guest post by Michael Fleischner. Michael Fleischner is an Internet marketing expert with more than 14 years of marketing experience. He has appeared on the TODAY Show, ABC World News, and Bloomberg Radio. Michael is the author of today's top-selling SEO book on Amazon.com, "SEO Made Simple" and his marketing blog is one of the most visited marketing blogs on the Web. To follow Michael, visit The Marketing Blog or connect via twitter @mfleischner.

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