How many social networks do you use? Research would suggest, if you’re an average Joe, then two is about the right number – chances are if you’re reading this then you’re involved in marketing in some capacity and will be active on a few more too. A popular network with PPC and SEO specialists is Google+. While no-one is privy to Google’s inner workings, we are all aware of updates to its search engine algorithms as our domains yo-yo up and down the results pages.
What we do know is that sharing on social networks is becoming an increasingly important factor when ranking the value of content, and Google appears to be rewarding domains associated with posts that are shared far and wide. However, some social networks would appear to be more equal than others and the +1 function in Google’s very own social network, Google+, was rated as the most important Google search ranking factor in research conducted in the US earlier this year. But what else should the SEO beginner know about Google+...
Social signals from all social networks, not just Google+, will become more important in determining search results. As mentioned, the Google+ +1 will become a crucial factor for Google when determining the validity and importance of content. Taking that a step further, it’s been suggested that not only are some social networks more equal than others, but some +1s will result in more SEO juice than others. It all depends on who shares your content. If it’s consumed and pushed by an individual with a more influential social profile (which itself is determined by a myriad of factors), then Google will assign more importance to the content.
Back links (followed links from other sites to yours) have always been the holy grail of SEO. The number of back links and the domain authorities of the sites they originate from, have up to now, been considered the most important search engine ranking factor. However, research shows that they’ve now been knocked into third place by +1s and Facebook shares. This is hugely important. It shows that Google considers the actions and endorsements of real life human beings the most important SEO ranking factors. Other social suggestions in the top ten most influential search ranking factors include pinning content on Pinterest, tweeting it and liking it on Facebook. Needless to say, if you want Google to rank your website higher, then produce interesting, shareable content...or get a leading B2B content marketing agency to do it for you!
On the topic of content sharing, if you post everything you produce while your target audience is asleep then it won’t get shared much. Identify when your key target audience is most active on social networks and then time content distribution using nifty Google tools like Timing+ which will help you analyse your shares to achieve maximum impact.
It’s been argued that those that use Google Authorship tend to average a full page rank higher than those that don’t. Being on page one of Google’s search results rather than page two could be the difference between thousands of sales and no sales. Basically, it’s really important. But what is this mysterious authorship I hear you ask, desperate for an answer; well, you know when you search for something on Google and a result pops up with the author’s picture next to it? Yes? Well that shows they’re a certified author – Google ranks this content higher than un-authored content. Here’s a good post on how to secure Google Authorship quickly and easily.
So that’s it for now folks. A beginner’s guide to SEO and Google+ - there are some basic lessons to take from this post - start implementing these tactics and measure how far you move up the search engine rankings. Some of the above may make more of a difference and if you think you’ve cracked the rankings puzzle then do let me know in the comments box below!
Image courtesy of Stuart Miles / FreeDigitalPhotos.net
The B2B PR Blog is a resource for both PR professionals and people working in B2B industries on how to devise and implement successful B2B PR campaigns. The blog is managed by b2b pr specialist Heather Baker, founder TopLine Comms, an inbound marketing and B2B content marketing agency and takes contribution from anyone sensible in the industry with something intelligent to say. Follow Heather on Twitter @TopLineFounder or contact her via email on [email protected].
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