Leveraging Social Media for SEO (Search Engine Optimization)

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How to use various social media sites to build content, votes and links that will boost your search engine rankings and support your SEO (search engine optimization) efforts.

Includes blogs, social networking sites (LinkedIn, Facebook, Plaxo, MySpace), microblogging (Twitter), video & photo-sharing (YouTube, Flickr), social bookmarking (Delicious, StumbleUpon, Digg), content sites (Squidoo, Wikipedia, HubPages, Knol) and social media press releases.

Presented by Stacy Williams of Atlanta search engine marketing firm Prominent Placement.

Published in: Business, Technology, Design
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  • As usual- very detailed, specific and relevant presentation info! Great job Stacy! Have your girls take you out for ice cream. Wish you were at the OMS in SF. Hope to see you soon! -Brooke
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  • Very useful information and right on time for our marketing focus now. Thanks for the comprehensive and non-mind boggling way you always present the ideas and facts.
    Cari
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  • Thank you, everyone, for the kind comments and for spreading the word about my presentation around!
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  • forgot to tell you - I like this so much I've put it on my blog - and sent around thru Twitter and FB - great info

    Phyllis Khare @phylliskhare
    http://phylliskhare.com
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  • Thank you for posting this, Stacy. I've been looking for information that connects social media marketing with SEO for our online nonprofit. This is great information.

    Valarie
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Leveraging Social Media for SEO (Search Engine Optimization)

  1. 1. www.prominentplacement.com 1.888.SEM.MKTR (1.888.736.6587) Lever aging Social Media for SEO Pur poses by Stacy W illiams June 10, 2009 © 2009 Prominent Placement, Inc. All rights reserved.
  2. 2. Obligatory Social Media Slide #1: Incredibly Fast Growth
  3. 3. Obligatory Social Media Slide #2: Huge Number of Sites List of over 400: traffikd.com/ social-media- websites/
  4. 4. Obligatory Social Media Slide #3: Amazing Business Benefits Influence sales Fast & affordable Build your brand Get feedback – listen to Develop a conversations community Enhance Thought corporate leadership personality Communicate with Reduce prospects & customer customers service costs Increase engagement Get your & create fans message out Market research quickly Third party credibility Increase media coverage Recruiting
  5. 5. SEO = Search Engine Optimization Goal: high organic rankings
  6. 6. WHY Leverage Social Media For SEO Purposes? Direct AND Indirect Benefits Source: TopRank Blog
  7. 7. WHY Leverage Social Media For SEO Purposes? (Direct) • Content • Votes • Links
  8. 8. WHY Leverage Social Media For SEO Purposes? (Direct) • Content • More content to optimize beyond the website • Take up more real estate in the search engine results pages
  9. 9. Personal blog Business blog LinkedIn profile Video sharing site 3rd party blog Twitter profile 3rd party blog Facebook Organization Ning social media site
  10. 10. WHY Leverage Social Media For SEO Purposes? (Direct) • Content • More content to optimize beyond the website • Take up more real estate in the search engine results pages • Search engine reputation management
  11. 11. Search Engine Reputation Management
  12. 12. WHY Leverage Social Media For SEO Purposes? (Direct) • Content • Votes
  13. 13. Votes • Beauty of social media is its interactivity • Users comment, repost, thumbs up, retweet, digg, bookmark, rate, review, etc. • Search engines are increasingly including these “votes” in their ranking algorithms • “Wisdom of the crowds” – generally accurate and hard to fake/spam
  14. 14. WHY Leverage Social Media For SEO Purposes? (Direct) • Content • Votes • Links
  15. 15. Quality Links Help Boost Your Site’s Organic Rankings
  16. 16. But All Links Are Not Equal… • Some links are redirected or “nofollowed” so they don’t pass “link juice” Roll over this link with your mouse… …and see the real URL is redirected through MySpace’s site
  17. 17. “Nofollow” • Some social media sites “nofollow” the links that go from their site to other websites • Search engines are not supposed to pass any “link juice” to sites where the link is “nofollowed” • Search engines do actually follow the links and index the web pages they’re pointing to • Some people think that they also do actually pass along some link juice (Ask.com ignores “nofollow” completely) • One method to see if links are “nofollowed”: • View > Source • Ctrl – F (for “Find” function) • Search for “nofollow”
  18. 18. Determining If a Site is Using “Nofollow” (Method 1)
  19. 19. Determining If a Site is Using “Nofollow” (Method 2) Using the Firefox browser, install the Greasemonkey plug-in and one other small script. “Nofollowed” links will be highlighted in your browser (IT’S EASY – I PROMISE!) Instructions: http://blog.bubble.ro/easily-highlight-nofollow-links-in-firefox/
  20. 20. WHY Leverage Social Media For SEO Purposes? (Indirect) • More online awareness of your brand leads to more online mentions, posts, tweets, links, etc. • Which leads to more searches for your brand • And more visitors to your site • Search engines may be including search volume and traffic levels in their ranking algorithms, so your site’s organic rankings may be boosted
  21. 21. WHY Leverage Social Media For SEO Purposes? (Indirect) …AND: • Tags and categorization that other people add gives the search engines trustworthy context so they know what your content is really about • Links on social media sites may help content get indexed by the search engines faster • Links on social media sites to deep content help more pages to get indexed by search engines
  22. 22. Now Let’s Get Down To Brass Tacks…
  23. 23. HOW Can You Leverage Social Media For SEO Purposes? • Blogs • Social networking sites • Microblogging sites • Video & photo sharing sites • Social bookmarking sites • Content sites • Social media press releases
  24. 24. Answer: APPROPRIATELY • Do not spam social media sites! • Submit valuable, quality content only • Don’t blatantly market or sell • Become a part of the community • Give, don’t just take • Lurk at first to learn the culture, expectations and unwritten rules
  25. 25. Blogs – Your Own • Domain, platform & hosting • Don’t host on Wordpress.com, Blogger.com, etc. • But use Wordpress as platform on domain you own • Separate domain: www.blog.com + www.site.com • more real estate in SERPs • more link juice from blog to main site • Main domain: www.site.com/blog OR http://blog.site.com • consolidated link juice from other sites • blog won’t start on a new domain, which may be slow to rank high
  26. 26. Separate Domain = More Real Estate in SERPs Main site Blog
  27. 27. Blogs – Your Own • Content • Optimize it like any other web page (keywords in copy, possibly headline too) • Also use keywords in each post’s webpage title tag • Wordpress plugin: “SEO Title Tag” • Links • Links to blog from other sites will help its content rank high (and link juice will trickle down to main site) • Link from blog to main site with keywords in anchor text • “Click for more information on keyword” NOT “Click here”
  28. 28. Blogs – Others’ • Blogs in your industry / on similar topic are most helpful • Add quality, useful, valuable, helpful comments • Don’t spam! • Include a link back to your site • First ensure blog isn’t using “nofollow” on links
  29. 29. Social Networking Sites
  30. 30. Social Networking Profiles • More content to show up in SERPs • Personal profile • Business profile • Optimize them – use keywords where you can • Change URL to include name / keywords • Build links back to main site • Check to see if links are “nofollowed” • Use keywords in anchor text where you can
  31. 31. LinkedIn Personal Profile Appears in SERPs Control anchor text Links pass juice
  32. 32. LinkedIn Business Profile Appears in SERPs No way to change Links pass juice anchor text here
  33. 33. Facebook Personal Profile Appears in SERPs Can’t control anchor text. No link juice
  34. 34. Facebook Business Profile Appears in SERPs Can’t control anchor text. No link juice
  35. 35. Other Social Networking Sites • Plaxo • Very limited public profile appears in SERPs • Can change profile settings so more/all info (including optimized content) appears in SERPs • Links don’t pass juice
  36. 36. Plaxo’s Default Public Profile
  37. 37. Plaxo’s Public Profile After Changing Settings
  38. 38. Other Social Networking Sites • Plaxo • Very limited public profile appears in SERPs • Can change profile settings so more/all info (including optimized content) appears in SERPs • Links don’t pass juice • MySpace • Profile appears in SERPs • Links don’t pass juice (they’re redirected, not nofollowed)
  39. 39. Microblogging Sites
  40. 40. Twitter TIP: search Twitter for conversations about your industry – reach May appear in out to those people SERPs. Can’t with quality control anchor content to get text. No link juice retweets & links (supposedly)
  41. 41. Video & Photo Sharing Sites
  42. 42. Optimizing YouTube Videos • Keywords in video title, description & tags • Include URL in description with http:// to ensure it’ll be a live link Other factors that influence rankings of YouTube videos: • Inbound links • Embeds • Comments • Shares Appears in SERPs • Subscribers • Age of video No link juice • Ratings • Channel views • Favoriting • Views • Flagging • Number & quality of sites that host or point to video TIP: Also add your videos to your site, one per page. Optimize the page and perhaps even include a video transcript (with keywords in it).
  43. 43. YouTube Videos in SERPs
  44. 44. Optimizing Flickr Photos Keywords Keywords in in account photo title name (don’t need hyphens) Keywords in photo description and anchor text Keywords Appears in SERPs in tags Can control anchor text. No link juice (supposedly)
  45. 45. Social Bookmarking Sites
  46. 46. Delicious Bookmarks May appear in SERPs. Can control anchor text. No link Keywords in juice bookmark titles/links Keywords in bookmark descriptions Keywords in bookmark tags
  47. 47. StumbleUpon May appear in SERPs. Can control anchor text. No link juice TIP: “Thumbs up” web pages that link to your site too! Keywords in title/link, review & tags
  48. 48. StumbleUpon Stumblers see this in Google’s SERPs. Stars are based on the number of “thumbs up” ratings from other Stumblers
  49. 49. Digg May appear in SERPs. Can control anchor text. No link juice Number of Number of Keywords in Keywords in “diggs” is comments title/link description critical helps too
  50. 50. Digg • Real value: • Articles with 50-100 diggs can appear in SERPs • Usually Digg listing appears first, then it’s replaced with the real article • Traffic generated from Digg site leads to more direct links from readers • Only post real news / articles – nothing commercial • Digg has many tech users who hate SEOs and will “bury” posts so be appropriate and don’t overdo optimization
  51. 51. Content Sites
  52. 52. Squidoo Lens URL: http://www.squidoo.com/ paid-search-predicting- success-for-pay-per-click- campaign Appears in SERPs Change anchor text Links pass juice
  53. 53. Squidoo Lensmaster Profile Appears in SERPs Change anchor text Links pass juice
  54. 54. Other Content Sites • Wikipedia • Articles appear in SERPs (usually ranked high!) • Links don’t pass juice • Submitting to Wikipedia is tricky and others can add negative info • HubPages • Hubs appear in SERPs • Links pass juice if HubScore is >75 • HubScore based on original content, amount of traffic, number of thumbs up votes, quality of the Hubber (author) • Google Knol • Knols appear in SERPs • Links don’t pass juice (except for some particularly “trustworthy” Knols)
  55. 55. Social Media Press Release: Optimize It Content is optimized Link to site with keyword in anchor text
  56. 56. Social Media Press Release Blog This Share This Comments Photos Technorati Tags Bookmarks Navigable Site Embedded
  57. 57. SERPs: Google News
  58. 58. SERPs: Google Main Results Optimized press release Optimized website
  59. 59. Adding Keywords To Anchor Text Some of these sites require you to use basic HTML to change link anchor text to include keywords. IT’S EASY! Just follow this for mat: <a href=“www.site.com”>keyword anchor text</a>
  60. 60. Taking This Back To Your Desk Ideal: Develop a social media strategy that considers your corporate goals and target audience Realistic: Dive in, play with it, learn, adjust, tweak, chip away at it Where should you start?
  61. 61. Fast Tactics That Provide Direct Results • LinkedIn Profiles • Personal • Business • Squidoo • Lensmaster profile • Submit existing articles + create a lens for your business/product • Social Media Press Releases • Optimize your releases • Use PRWeb at the $200 level (which allows you to control anchor text)
  62. 62. Fast Tactics That Provide Some Or Indirect Results • Facebook and Plaxo (maybe MySpace) profiles • Personal • Business • YouTube & Flickr • Repurpose existing videos (corporate, product, training, interviews) and photos (product, facilities, executives, events) • Set up a YouTube channel and Flickr account for your business • HubPages & Knol • Upload existing articles
  63. 63. Tactics That Take Time But Are Worth It • Corporate blog • Twitter • YouTube & Flickr • Create videos/photos based on in-demand content or targeted keywords • StumbleUpon • Squidoo, HubPages & Knol • Create new content regularly
  64. 64. Tactics That Take A Great Deal of Time and/or Offer Less Value • Posting comments on others’ blogs • Takes time to find worthwhile blogs and posts for comments, one at a time • Digg • Takes serious participation and engagement in the community to see results • Delicious • Doesn’t take much time but doesn’t offer much benefit
  65. 65. Personal blog Business blog LinkedIn profile Dive in and someday this Video sharing site could be your 3rd party blog brand! Twitter profile 3rd party blog Facebook Organization Ning social media site
  66. 66. www.prominentplacement.com 1.888.SEM.MKTR (1.888.736.6587) For a copy of this presentation or to subscribe to our free monthly enewsletter on SEM topics, please email Stacy Williams at stacy [at] prominentplacement.com My blog: www.searchadvisory.net © 2009 Prominent Placement, Inc. All rights reserved.

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