Larry Brauner

In Social Media vs. Search Engine Optimization, worth a read, I discussed the synergy between social media and search engine optimization.

Today, thanks to heated competition between Facebook and Google, the connection between social media and SEO may become much tighter than a mere relationship of loose synergy.

A More Natural Form of Search

According to the Wired.com article which I referenced in Most Popular Social Networking Sites for Business, “Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg envisions a more personalized, humanized Web, where our network of friends, colleagues, peers, and family is our primary source of information, just as it is offline.”

In other words, the endorsements of both web pages and their authors by people in our personal networks will influence the outcomes of online searches we perform as much as or more than the current system which analyzes external links to determine a site’s authority and relevance.

New Role of Social Media in SEO

Facebook intends to leverage the vast amount of member data stored in its global network to facilitate this type of search.

Facebook is adding tons of new data by the second through its site, as well as via its Facebook Connect API that opens a window into a growing number of other sites such as Digg.com.

Google is pursuing initiatives to develop its own proprietary data through Google Friend Connect and the anticipated releases of Google Wave and Google Chrome OS.

Furthermore, all search providers can mine public web data to monitor additional social media buzz about web pages and their authors.

Let’s consider how big this SEO paradigm shift will be.

Social Media Presence

In the new SEO, your online reputation is an integral part of your overall web presence and influences your search results. Social media enables you to nurture the relationships and shape the opinions that underlie your online reputation and social capital.

So important is social capital today that new products and services such as Sumbaa, by Paden Noble Consulting and Morpholytics, LLC, are emerging to meet a fast-growing need in the marketplace.

Webmasters work to build external links to their company’s web pages. Savvy companies are already beginning to dedicate additional staff to build and manage social capital as well.

High Cost of Complacency

Companies that neglect their social media presence will suffer in several ways:

  • They’ll have no influence over their online reputation.
  • Their customers will view them as backward.
  • They won’t receive traffic from social media sites.
  • They’ll receive less search engine traffic too.

Be Proactive

Build your social media presence right away. Pay special attention to Facebook and Google. I intend to write much more about Facebook and Google in future articles.

Oh, and while we’re on the subject, please take a minute to join my Facebook and Google networks using the widgets on my right sidebar.

Did you enjoy this article? Subscribe to my RSS feed or by e-mail. Visit my About, Services, Media Buzz and Connect pages to learn about Building Your Audience and Brand on the Web. See also my Disclosure Policy regarding affiliations and compensation.

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23 Responses to “The NEW Search Engine Optimization”

  1. DANIEL FROMHOFF on July 26th, 2009 5:59 pm

    Larry,

    Thanks for the input. I will watch for additional info.

    How do I improve my social media presence?

    I am trying to find some affordable help to finish building my website.

  2. Larry Brauner on July 26th, 2009 6:10 pm

    Dan,

    Try Ivo Jackson for reasonably priced website help.

  3. Steve on July 26th, 2009 8:30 pm

    It seems like almost yesterday that no one had heard of Twitter. Now, it’s all over the news. Same with Facebook. It’s those who are just beyond the curve of trends that do the best in business. Readers, take heed!

  4. Larry Brauner on July 26th, 2009 8:37 pm

    That may be true Steve. However, one thing is certain: Those who are just beyond the curve of trends take a lot of arrows in the head too. Maybe that’s why they call it the bleeding edge. :)

  5. Colleen Lilly on July 26th, 2009 11:19 pm

    Hi Larry,

    You are right, Google is now going to rank you according to your social connections and the value of your social connections! So social media and SEO are changing the Internet and how you rank! Isn’t this exciting?! It is truly going to be a social networking internet!! Thanks for your fabulous article!

  6. Larry Brauner on July 27th, 2009 8:11 am

    What excites me the most Colleen is that social media now serves and an additional purpose, and it’s cost is easier to justify, which introduces new opportunities for social media, social networking and web marketing professionals. ;-)

  7. Phoenix2life on July 27th, 2009 9:25 am

    Interesting article. Definitely with entry of Bing, SEO has been changing a lot. Thanks for a cool post.

  8. Larry Brauner on July 27th, 2009 12:15 pm

    I verified for myself that as of now, Facebook is using Bing to search the web.

  9. Debbie Morgan on July 27th, 2009 1:22 pm

    Hi Larry!

    Thanks for a great post. I believe you are on target with this. Social media gives the net a more personal feel and people like that when they’re online. The impersonal nature of the web has turned a lot of people off, especially when they’re shopping.

  10. I.C. Jackson on July 31st, 2009 2:51 pm

    Wow…the “New” SEO…this is big.

    I wonder how this will influence search engine results in the long run. It seems that those who currently dominate the SERPs have a social media presence already, and are likely to get talked up enough on Twitter, Facebook, and the like to maintain their positions of power. So, is this kind of knowledge one more advantage for the little guy in the know, as opposed to the little guy who doesn’t read this blog?

    :-)

    Do you think it will make a huge difference with medium-sized businesses and sites?

    Thanks for your insight, and thanks for this blog!

  11. Larry Brauner on July 31st, 2009 3:01 pm

    I don’t know if it’s necessarily true Ivo that those who dominate the search engines also dominate social media. Traditional SEO builds inbound links, not social media buzz.

    I would say that this change hurts the top dogs, since they only stand to lose, and benefits the underdogs since they can only gain.

    The key point, however, is to start laying a social media foundation now rather than in a state of panic later on.

  12. Ritche on August 2nd, 2009 1:42 pm

    There are just plenty of social media nowadays. But I guess Facebook and Google are two of the most influential. I like the way Facebook integrates a lot of functions such as that of Twitter and blogging, plus other stuff like chatting and meeting people.

    I can sense that either Facebook or another social media will emerge which will become the ultimate interface of all that we do in the internet in such a way that we don’t have to leave that site to chat, search, blog, play games, etc.

  13. Will McCulloch on August 2nd, 2009 3:16 pm

    Hi Larry,

    Yes I’m sure you’re right about SEO changing and look forward to learning more from your future articles about Facebook and Google.

    Best wishes,

    Will

  14. Gry Dla Dzieci on August 10th, 2009 2:30 am

    I would fully agree with you that social networking sites are the new power in SEO. You could add Twitter and maybe some other minor websites that also create traffic on people’s blogs and sites.

    Facebook is the biggest at the moment, but I wouldn’t be so sure that Twitter won’t overtake FB in the next few years. Twitter is just perfect for SEO - it is just like the site was made for that. All tweeting and following is great web marketing tool and that kind of social sites are in my opinion the future of not only SEO but the whole Internet.

  15. Larry Brauner on August 10th, 2009 11:55 am

    The SEO power of social networking sites is not so much in the traffic they drive as in the buzz they create. Facebook and Google will be monitoring the buzz to help rank web pages.

    Given the lead that Facebook has over Twitter and the wide range of functionality, I’d be very very surprised if Twitter caught up to Facebook.

    I do agree that social sites, even if not quite the essence of the Internet, will become portals to the Internet and dominate it.

  16. Get Traffic on August 10th, 2009 3:25 pm

    This is really great information and I thank you for sharing it. I guess I should have seen this coming with Google and Facebook. And I agree with you, Larry. I think (and I hope) Facebook has enough lead that Twitter will never catch up. Facebook has so much more functionality, and it’s always coming up with so much more.

    Keep us posted on this.

  17. Moden Furniture on October 13th, 2009 8:48 am

    There is always New SEO, Search Engine optimization is changing every day, that is why is so hard to stay ontop.

    I think Twitter is getting stronger and stronger.

    Larry, you have been doing a great job on your blog.

  18. Steve on December 17th, 2009 9:10 pm

    An interesting article. Both Google and Facebook are growing. Google is fighting to keep its place while Facebook has bigger ambitions. There is an unseen rivalry that is going along with these two. Google does not like to lose its position in Search leadership and Adwords leadership. On both fronts Google is the Leader without a second. Facebook with its growing addicted membership can raise a banner of revolt.

    Other then that, the points raised by this article are very much genuine. We can ignore social networks at our peril only. We have to move forward and build a presence in these sites to receive traffic and identity.

  19. Webdesign Roosendaal on March 1st, 2010 3:48 pm

    Great post. However, what I do NOT like about social media, is the immense amount of nofollow links. Of course you can use Twitter and LinkedIn, but they won’t help you get your websites higher in the search engine rankings.

    Still, you can get a lot of indirect traffic from these sources to your website. I totally agree about that.

  20. Larry Brauner on March 1st, 2010 8:50 pm

    I agree about the nofollow links.

    Most social media sites that used to be dofollow have changed over to nofollow, presumably because of post and comment spam.

    My experience with business networking sites such as Twitter, and more recently, with Facebook has been very different than yours.

    I have enjoyed lots of direct traffic from both and build relationships that have led to many quality links to my articles.

    How you use these business networking sites makes all the difference.

  21. best seo on May 4th, 2010 11:09 pm

    I said no long time ago that seo is going to die as we knew it and would turn into something new. however, search engines will last, as they are the very core of the internet. SEs integrated rapidly social media search. “Big guys” like Facebook and Twitter have no yet capabilities to replace search engines. besides, social media phenomenon it’s going to melt down at a certain point. the big networks will probably be replaced by smaller communities.

  22. dwain @ trojan remover software on December 5th, 2010 8:34 am

    Thanks for the great post about SEO. Your post brought up a lot of interesting points that I haven’t thought about. I’m looking forward to reading a lot more of your site in the future.

  23. Sheridan Berry on January 5th, 2012 12:00 am

    Today, social media presence is definitely important. If you do not have it, you will be surely left behind and you do not want your company to experience that.

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