Social signals play an important role in a blog’s organic SEO structure. Multiple studies from Moz and Search Metrics explore the connection between SEO rankings and social signals. The fact that social signals play an important role is increasing with time; 2015 and subsequent years is going to be watershed year as more blogs and websites go ‘social’.
Social signals improve the blog SEO structure directly and indirectly. When people like the blog’s Facebook page, share blog posts, follow on Twitter, retweet, re-pin on Pinterest, follow on Google+ and more, it has a direct impact.
The indirect impact of social shares come from higher time on site, repeat visitors, lower bounce rate, improved citations and inbound links that enhance the blog’s social visibility. All these factors play a prominent role in the eyes of major search engines, improving the blog’s authority over a period of time.
In 2015, businesses are allocating higher budget to improve social search and visibility. This is also a year when blogging is going to reach newer heights. It is practically impossible to succeed in blogging. You need to build a blog brand to draw any tangible and non-tangible benefits and social signals should be an important aspect of blog and business growth.
Increasing Social Signals to Your Blog
In the article, I will highlight ways to increase a blog’s social signals. All these processes require time and though, there are tools to automate the process, manual works the best for long-term results.
Before that, see this video where Matt Cutts stresses on the role played by social signals.
1) Activate Social Media Accounts & Network:
Obviously, the first step is to create an account with all the popular social media sites, which are Facebook, Google+, Twitter, Pinterest, LinkedIn and Instagram. Go to this site and you will find a list of all social and business sites where you can claim username for your blog or business.
I suggest that you use that tool and claim all the username accounts for two benefits; first, you protect the blog / business brand name and second, the accounts create backlinks which will act as strong social links to improve blog / website authority.
Use these accounts only for professional use. While it is time consuming, try to be active on some of these accounts. In fact, you can schedule access. For instance, Monday could be for Facebook and Tuesday for Google+ and so on. Like this, you spend a considerable amount of time on each network and learn to market the blog.
Remember that social media activity is not only about dropping your blog links on them. You need to network with niche influencers and share blog posts from other bloggers too. Blogging is a niche which depends on sharing. You cannot exist solely. If you’re launching a brand and the blog is intrinsic part of the brand, hiring a ‘community manager’ is a good investment because you cannot operate all the social accounts actively, on a daily basis.
2) Add Social Sharing Buttons on the Blog:
This is necessary. While the addition of social sharing buttons might make the blog slow to load sometimes, depending on the plugin used or coding installed, but you cannot avoid this.
If you have a WordPress blog, install the Jetpack plugin. The Jetpack is a comprehensive console offering a variety of blog marketing and monitoring services, social sharing being one of them. You can link the social media accounts with Jetpack and whenever any post goes live, they are automatically shared on them. If your blog is multi-authored, they too can add their social media accounts for maximum reach. The placement of social share buttons on the top of the post or horizontally works best.
As I said earlier, plugins can slow down a blog. Using WP Total Cache plugin will improve blog speed and you can amplify further by using a content delivery network (CDN) like MaxCDN and CloudFlare.
3) Improve Content:
Give importance to quality over numbers. Publishing endless posts daily doesn’t guarantee better social signals if the content quality is poor. Whether you are a sole blogger or hiring a team, give stress on producing quality content even if it takes a lot of time.
Informative and relatable content not only gains higher organic search result but better social share counts too. See blogs like Mashable or Social Media Examiner, every post has hundreds of people sharing it. This is all due to the content quality.
4) Request others to Share & Link to Other Influencers:
Major search engines give optimum value to natural links or organic links. These are links which were created naturally and not via any link building methods.
One of the best ways to boost social signals to your blog is to link out to other blog posts. While webmasters and search engine specialists are divided on the best linking methods, linking out to influential bloggers do work. When you do, contact them and share your blog post, and request them to share with their audience. This strategy helps to amplify reach. If the bloggers you linked to like your content and the way you mentioned them, they will surely pass on the favor and share your blog with their audience.
This strategy helps to improve blog branding as more authority influencers come to know about it and if you network with them well, they will surely help to promote socially.
Featured Image Credit: cardamonemarketing.com
Over To You
The connection between social signals and SEO has come a long way over the past few years. You should concentrate on social signals. Apart from social signals, there are other factors too, which will play a key role in blog’s SEO.
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