Small business owners sometimes overlook the connection between social media and local SEO (Search Engine Optimization). Both aspects of digital marketing are closely connected, and each complements the other.
The Connection Between Social Media and Local SEO
Time is limited so you may struggle to juggle social media and local SEO activities. It turns out that each amplifies the other. Major search engines like Google and Bing index social media posts and profiles giving you another opportunity to reach potential customers.
Also, for most brands, social media networks are where consumers hang out. According to a Nielsen survey, in 2016 the average adult spent 5.5 hours a week using social media sites like Facebook, Twitter, and others. This number rivals and may even surpass the time adults spend watching television. Tapping into popular social media networks provides access to consumers in your local area and beyond.
Since social media networks are among the most popular websites, search engines like Google and Bing include social media content in results. Furthermore, it appears that when people share your content on social media, it may provide a signal to Google that your content is high in quality.
Integrating Your Website With Your Social Media
The first step is to coordinate your social media channels and website. Ideally, you want your social media presence to look like an extension of your business website.
As a small business owner, you may not have time for each social channel, the common advice is to focus on a couple of channels that reach your customers. However, we recommend that you open a business account on Facebook, Twitter, and Pinterest even if you don’t plan to focus on those channels. The main reason is so you can integrate your website with your business page for SEO purposes.
Many small business owners treat a social media profile as a static ad or directory listing. This approach is better than nothing and can help with local SEO. However, you will see your best results by maintaining an active presence and engaging with potential clients, customers, and partners. Sharing relevant and useful content helps raise your profile as a thought leader and expert in your local area and beyond. Sharing your own content helps amplify that content and may even boost your SEO social signals.
Optimize Your Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest and Other Social Media Profiles To Enhance Local SEO
- Include your website and other business contact information including your business phone number
- List your street address if you have an office or storefront.
- Write a keyword rich description of your business, location, and services you offer. Different channels allow varying amounts of space so your description on Twitter must be shorter than your Facebook page description.
- Complete all the fields possible to make the best use of the search functions both within the channel and on major search engines. Pins, Tweets, Google+ posts and Facebook pages are all indexed by major search engines.
- Marketing Land published a Social Media Checklist for startups and small businesses.
More Tips On How To Integrate Your Social Media and Local SEO
- Try to claim the same username on each channel and choose one that closely mirrors your business name or your website domain name. Professionals, realtors, artists, consultants, and authors may wish to claim their actual name or pen name.
- Choose a consistent profile image or avatar for each channel. Some prefer to match the image to the channel while others use the same image. Either way, you want people to associate your profile with your website, brand, and other social channels.
- Create or commission coordinating cover photos or background images for Facebook, Twitter, Google+ and any other channel you plan to use that allows a custom background (such as LinkedIn, YouTube, etc.) The image should be consistent with your branding and website design.
- Link your website to each channel by listing it on your profile. Also, set up integrations for each channel including Rich Pins, Twitter Cards, and a Facebook app. This step helps you better control how your content looks when a user shares it on those social networks!
Bonus Tip: If your ideal username is already claimed, check to see whether the account is active. If not, you could reach out to the owner to purchase it just like you might do for a domain name.
Social media and local SEO are part of a comprehensive digital marketing plan. Sometimes business owners find it more effective to hire an agency to oversee their digital marketing. Contact Brandgy to build your brand and your business.