Want to get a better understanding of how social and SEO can work together? Or just want to learn more about SEO in general? We’ve put together a collection of resources and general tips to help you out!
First, here are some general helpful articles to get introduced to SEO and its relationship with social media:
How to improve SEO with social media:
Social Media Optimization: 6 Tips to Steal from SEOs
Great strategy for using social and SEO together to improve rankings and get traffic:
Next, here are a couple ways you can directly use social media to help out with SEO. We’re focusing on YouTube, Pinterest, Twitter, and third-party publishing sites like Medium and LinkedIn, since they have the biggest benefit:
YouTube & Pinterest
While there isn’t a direct correlation between social media and Google rankings, there is a slight exception for two networks: Pinterest & YouTube.
Content on YouTube and Pinterest consistently ranks in Google for certain queries, particularly “how to” content for YouTube, and queries with “ideas” or lists for Pinterest.
YouTube is the second largest search engine in the world, and owned by Google. With that, we’ve seen an increase in the number of YouTube videos that rank well in Google for certain queries, particularly “how to” searches.
While brands tend to think of Pinterest as a platform just for food or clothing brands, it’s much more versatile. A good example is the book publishing company Penguin Random House. Their Pinterest boards alone (excluding individual pins) rank in Google for hundreds of keywords:
While it might not work for every industry, Pinterest, it’s worth exploring. Try to think of the type of content your target audience might search for on Pinterest, and create boards and Pin content related to it. If they’re searching for it on Pinterest, they may also be looking on Google as well.
How to Rank in Google Using Pinterest
In 2015, Google and Twitter struck a partnership. One of the benefits of that deal was that live Tweets now show up in Google search:
The Tweets show up for some brand searches, as well as searches related to popular/trending topics. Right now, there is no guarantee that your brand’s Tweets will appear in search results, but there are some things you can do to help increase your chances:
- Tweet consistently: Part of Google’s algorithm it uses to determine what to display in search results is something called “Query Deserves Freshness”. This basically means that for certain queries, Google wants to surface the latest related content. Someone looking for information on a brand or a trending topic would probably want to see the latest information (including Tweets) from or about that brand.
- Talk about trending topics: In addition to brand searches, Google also embeds Tweets about trending topics:A good place to start is to use our Hashtag Holiday calendar to find upcoming holidays to Tweet about. Make sure you use the relevant hashtag as well.
- Add schema to your website: This is something your developers will likely have to do for you. Schema is special markup you can add to your website to help search engines understand more about your website. You can use schema to let Google know what the official social media profiles are for your brand. While this doesn’t guarantee your Tweets will show up for branded searches, it’s a simple way to help Google understand the relationship between your brand and social media profiles. More info here: https://developers.google.com/search/docs/data-types/social-profile
Medium & LinkedIn
While they’re not looked at as “traditional” social networks, Medium and LinkedIn’s publishing platform are a great way to combine social and SEO efforts. Create long form content on either of these channels, or republish existing content to them.
Marketer’s guide to Medium
Top topics for Medium:
How to hack the LinkedIn Pulse algorithm:
10 LinkedIn Publishing Tips: We Analyzed 3000 LinkedIn Blog Posts
Lastly, SEOs love tools. But a lot of the tools used for SEO can also be beneficial for all marketers. Here are a few we use here at Sprout that you should consider.
Yoast SEO Plugin
If your site is built on WordPress, the Yoast SEO plugin is a must-have. It gives you the ability to do some basic SEO functions like add meta titles and descriptions to every page on your site, as well as enable Open Graph data for Twitter, Facebook and Pinterest.
More info here: https://yoast.com/social-media-optimization-with-yoast-seo/
This is the industry standard for checking backlinks (sites that link back to you). A good way to get social and SEO to work together is to identify bloggers, brands and other sites that are linking to you, and then engage with them on social media.
Ahrefs is also helpful for doing competitive research. Spy on who’s linking to your competitors and start fostering relationships with them through social media and email conversations.
Buzzsumo is great for identifying topics that are popular among your audience. One of their newest features, question analyzer is the perfect intersection for SEO and social media.
Type in a keyword or topic related to your industry and see the questions people have. Buzzsumo finds questions on forums and popular Q&A sites like Quora. Create blog posts that answer these questions, then whenever you see the questions asked on Twitter, Facebook or Q&A sites, you can answer them and provide a link back to your article.
Not only does this help build social media engagement, but you’ll also start building up a library of helpful content that can rank in search engines. Search engines love content that answers specific questions or solves problems.