Social Signals and SEO: How Are They Both Connected

POSTED BY , UPDATED ON March 28th, 2014

social signals and seo

There’s an awful lot of buzz in SEO circles these days about social signals and SEO. Search engines use social signals to help determine which websites or pages should rank highly in search engine results pages. In order to convince the search engines that your site is worthy of a boost due to the social signals it sends out, you need more than simply a link from Facebook or Twitter pointing to your site. Rather, you need to produce good quality content that will entice your website visitors to share the content in their social networks. The more social shares your content has, the more powerful the signal is to search engines that this content is of good quality and is being shared by influential people, thus making it worthy of a high ranking.

 

Social Sharing can Help You Acquire Quality Links

Social sharing is a terrific way to get good quality inbound links. A few years ago when SEO was much simpler, you earned links by putting up lots of good content wherein you hoped your visitors liked it enough to link to it. This method worked well but today it’s not enough. Social media has taken over the internet making it more important to focus on putting up buzz-worthy content rather than just lots of content.

If you start to run your content through social media by Tweeting it and posting to Facebook with a good link embedded and that content goes viral, you’ll obtain plenty of quality links to your new content.

 

Today the Focus is on Natural Links 

Today, any good SEO guy or gal will be quick to tell you that one certain thing that is always rewarded in organic search is a ‘natural’ link. Google’s quality guidelines indicate that only natural inks are useful for the indexing and ranking of sites. So what is natural link building anyway? A natural link is one that other people link back to your site without you asking or paying for it.

A few years ago, every site owner and his brother were busy asking for links or buying links. Today that is considered by many SEO savvy individuals to be a waste of both time and money and even risky as Google could slap a site with a stiff penalty if it appears that its links weren’t acquired naturally. This is where social sharing comes into play.

If you want to rank high in the search results today and do it naturally, you had better share your content with others on social networking sites and put ‘Tweet This”, “Pin this” and “Google+” buttons on every page of your site or blog to increase the chances of your content being shared.

Remember, positive social signals and SEO should both work together – there wouldn’t be any substantial benefit in SERPs if an article has weak SEO elements but strong social sharing activity!

 

Buzz Worthy Content is King

We’ve all heard the phrase “content is king”. But instead of simply creating tons of content, you need to produce viral content that others will want to share.

You will obtain or should we say earn natural links by blogging and adding share and connect buttons to your site and of course, by continually adding fresh, relevant content. And, every time you publish an article, you are providing your domain with more content and more opportunities for it to rank for related search queries wherein you can accrue natural inbound links.

The focus today is on creating content real people will want to share and recommend. When you do this, you will send social signals to Google and the other search engines which indicate that your content is share-worthy and valuable.

 

Social Signals and SEO are Going to Get Seriously Integrated Together

With reports about the upcoming Author Rank coming in now quite frequently, it is clear that social signals would eventually become the most valued ranking factor for several reasons. For one, people are becoming more social online and are routinely communicating with one another on social network sites. As time marches on and more companies join social networking websites, an increasing number of consumers will be interacting with their favorite brands on these sites (specially on Google+).

Secondly, people tend to put more trust in websites recommended personally by their acquaintances than trusting search query results they obtain. Thirdly, sites with a strong social presence are easy to find and to share. The search engines look at these shares as recommendations and in turn boost the rankings of  these sites.

It is therefore quite clear that in the future, social signals and SEO would play more hand in hand in SERPs than ever before!