Google weighs in: Social Media Buzz is Good SEO
“Google figures that if your links are truly legit, there should be some social proof.”
The SEO industry has been in an uproar the past few weeks unlike I have seen since the Panda Farmer Update in Feb of 2011. The issue? The deindexing of blog networks and other common link building strategies by Google in their latest algorithm update.
Back in October 2010, I posited the question “Is share more important than search?” in a blog post that was discussing how Facebook had overtaken Google as the most visited site on the web. A couple of months after that, Matt Cutts put out this video in which he acknowledged that Google does use social signals from Twitter and Facebook in their ranking results:
I point this out to show that it has been no secret for a while now that Google pays attention to social signals. What amazes me, is that amongst my peers in the internet marketing business, there is still such a seemingly myopic focus on links. There is no doubt that links are important when it comes to ranking in Google. But links cannot be the only thing you focus on when you are crafting an SEO strategy. Think about it this way—if you have enough links to rank #1 in Google for a particular term, but there is no one out there talking about your actual content, that raises a red flag-If you are so popular, why aren’t people talking about you? In other words, Google figures that if your links are truly legit, that there should be some social proof. In January Google even started to include social results in the SERPS by introducing search + your world:
The takeaway is that you need to focus less on spending your time building tons of links in suspect places, and instead start focusing on creating more content that is unique, remarkable and buzzworthy–and make sure that it is easy to share with others. I think you will find that your brand ecosystemSM will be much more robust. I am not saying stop all link building activities, I am just saying—expand your definition of what good SEO is. Here is a really good video from Google on creating good SEO and pretty much lays out the difference between quality optimization of your site as well as 5 common mistakes that Google sees businesses make when marketing on the web. Enjoy! 🙂
With over 20 years of experience in the digital media world, Matthew has worked for and with Fortune 500 businesses and has built companies from the start-up stage to exit strategy. He recently helped develop a data insight engine to bridge the gap between search, social, and mobile marketing to maximize the visibility, relevancy, and predictive success of online businesses. Matthew is the founder of MINT Social, an award-winning digital marketing company that accelerates online marketing results to help businesses get found and thrive online. Matthew has developed an educational curriculum for Universities on social media for businesses, is a founding board member of the Arizona Innovation Marketing Association (AZIMA), a board member of HeroZona Foundation and on the advisory board (Vinnies) for St. Vincent de Paul - Phoenix. Matthew is a mentor with ASU Entrepreneurship and Innovation Group, a speaker on social media and digital marketing, and is a subject matter expert with many online portals.