Marketing Six
July 10, 2023

How SEO and Social Media Are Integrated

Understanding the Relationship Between Search Engine Rankings and Social SEO

With the rise of platforms like Facebook, Instagram, and YouTube, many people wonder if SEO and social media are integrated and how they can work together. If you are trying to market your business online, the ability to benefit in both areas from a single piece of content can become critical. But what you don’t know can hurt you. Here we discuss the relationship between SEO and social media and how to use each one to boost the other.

Do Social Media Interactions Affect Search Engine Rankings?

One of the most common questions people have is whether a high-performing social media post that links back to a blog or a piece of content affects how a search engine ranks it. While Google once admitted that it does affect their rankings, they have more recently denied it. However, other platforms, such as Bing, have admitted that social signals are used to determine search results. 

Even without Google’s admission, we can use data to determine whether a blog that is shared on social media affects rankings. And if we had any doubt, a 2018 study by Hootsuite found that there is a “positive correlation between social engagements and change in rank.” The study found that there was a 22% increase in SEO results when content was boosted on social media.

It makes sense that rankings would increase when a high-quality piece of content is shared and promoted on social media since link clicks on blogs go back to the website, increasing page views, time spent on a page, pages visited on the website, and bounce rate. In order to calculate these things, it is important to ensure that social media posts link back to the website. This provides critical data that can help show you how content is performing.

Are Social Network Platforms Search Engines?

According to the Search Engine Journal, while Google remains the most popular search engine with over 86% of the market share, social network YouTube comes in second, and Facebook ranks fourth. While the rise of Instagram and TikTok will likely change these rankings in the future, it goes to show that social platforms are becoming search engines within their own right, creating a new vein of SEO.  

Search Engine Journal’s top five most popular search engines:

  • Google
  • YouTube
  • Amazon
  • Facebook
  • Microsoft Bing

Learning how these social platforms rank content is essential and should guide your posts with the use of things like captions, alt text, subtitles, and closed captions for video content. 

What Is Social SEO?

With the idea that social platforms are becoming viable search engines, it is necessary to understand how the two concepts work together.

Combining SEO and Social Media:

  • SEO - deals with the intentional discovery by users using search on search engines like Google, Bing, or Yahoo.
  • Social Media - deals with the unintentional discovery of content by an algorithm.

Social SEO, therefore, deals with a mix of intentional and unintentional discovery based on an algorithm and search. While social networks becoming search engines is a new breed of SEO, it also presents the opportunity to create content that is mutually beneficial in both areas. 

How High-Quality Content Sharing Boosts SEO

High-quality content sharing can boost SEO by increasing potential search algorithm factors like page views, time spent on a page, and pages visited with link posts. It can also extend the life of content with evergreened social media posts. Ultimately, the more brand reach you can get on social media, the more likely your website will show up as a high-quality backlink on someone else’s website, increasing your site’s authority.

What You Need to Know Going Forward

Ultimately, in order to truly utilize social media to increase search rankings, you need to be producing high-quality shareable content. It is also essential to work with a company that is on the cutting edge of this new vein of SEO having departments that work together, sharing information to take advantage of the benefits that strong content can have in both areas.