It’s the question that anyone using social media as part of their web marketing wants the answer to: Does social media impact search engine rankings?
Most SEOs agree that social media marketing itself has very little direct impact on rankings. That means that doing X via social media rarely results in rankings going up.
But that doesn’t mean that social media doesn’t have any value in regards to SEO. In fact, the opposite is true. As far as we know, search engines are currently not using direct social media signals as part of their ranking algorithm. However, the benefits received from social media often do translate to those things that the search engine algorithms care a great deal about.
Let’s say you create a really cool tool and you want to use social media to promote it. Great idea! If you’re smart, you’ve already optimized the tool’s landing page for specific keywords. At that point, there isn’t much more you can do except to make sure the search engines know about the page.
So you start promoting your tool by linking to your landing page via your social streams. That doesn’t necessarily help the page rank any better, but the more you socialize the page,the more traffic you get to it (hopefully). People are responding to your shares via their social channels both by engaging with you about it and passing the link on to their friends.
This produces more traffic and, sooner or later, you start seeing some mentions of your tool on other websites. Those links leads to more traffic, more interaction, more socialization, and more links.
As the search engines read the sentiment of web users interested in that tool, they begin to see that there is benefit in getting that page to rank. Why? Because other sites are linking to it and people are talking about it. If you continue to provide a good landing page and a good service, the value of your page continues to climb.
The higher the value the higher the rankings.
Think of social media marketing as authority building. [Tweet This] Authority isn’t built on the number of tweets or retweets, it’s built on providing web users and searchers what they want. And that is a sure way to build search engine rankings.