Personal Small Business Enterprise
SEO-social

SEO Gets Social. Are You Ready?

This entry is part of a recurring series on optimizing your website for maximum visibility online. The process is called search engine optimization, or SEO, and we first touched on it in our earlier blog entries, including:

-       The 10-minute-a-day tip for search engine referrals
-       The SEO journey continues
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Do I need an SEO expert or can I learn it myself?
-       Four SEO tips for business owners

As SEO is a fast-evolving area of expertise, we’ll continue to revisit it in future additions to the Bell Business Blog. This time out, we take a look at social media’s impact on SEO.

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It’s no longer enough to rely exclusively on conventional advertising strategies to get your business message out there. Your customers and prospects are using search engines and social media tools to find you, so you’ve got to be visible on these emerging platforms too.

Search engine optimization, also known as SEO, is an increasingly important competency that involves maintaining your online presence to maximize its ability to attract the right kinds of customers. If you’re selling non-marking rubber eyeglass holders, for example, you want to come up at the top of the list of results when customers search for anything remotely related to non-marking rubber eyeglass holders.

To get to the top of the heap requires careful attention to how your web site is built and updated. Your pages have to be structured and formatted properly – with appropriate use of linking, tagging and metadata. Your content also has to be updated regularly, because static, aged content is the quickest route to search engine oblivion.

These basics of SEO have been around for a while, but the growth of social media is now adding another wrinkle to the SEO process. Integrating social media presences into your website further enhances SEO visibility in the eyes of most major search engines. Simply put, they tend to rank sites with tight social media integration higher than those without. In fact, search results from major search engines now often include links and responses culled from your – and your friends’ – social media activities.

Beyond the back-end benefits, using dedicated pages on Facebook, Google+ and LinkedIn, along with Twitter handles and hashtags to redirect visitors’ attention toward your web site can open your business to an entirely new audience. That’s because when shopping for products and services, a growing number of consumers increasingly open up their social media tools first. Twitter, Facebook, Google+ and LinkedIn are, in some respects, becoming de facto search services for online users.

If your company’s current approach to SEO doesn’t include social media, you may want to consider contacting Bell. Bell offers many website services for businesses that can help you not only establish a professional-looking presence online, but do so in a way that ensures the right customers will beat a path to your door.

The bottom line
As the barriers between traditional search and social media continue to break down, it becomes increasingly important for all businesses to consider this ongoing evolution when building a web site and considering a social media strategy.

Stay tuned for our next post on social media and SEO, which will provide you with comprehensive tips to help you start integrating social media into your SEO initiatives.

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