What is Recommendation?
Social Signals were not important until recently the smart search engines changed their ranking criteria and added feathers to the likes, shares, tweets, re-tweets and Top Social Media Signals ! For instance, let’s know how often we people take recommendation from people that are in our networks? Ummm quite often! Yes we do it often and before making any online purchase we try to consult friends, relatives, experienced personnel and expert individuals from the field in our network. And moreover, we do get the best results and good advice from such parties that help us in decision making process and act on it.
A recommendation is much like a VOTE for us which influences our decisions and steps in a particular direction. This recommendation, if taken digitally from the eye of search engine is called as a social signal. It seems Social Media Channels Are Search Engines best tools now. The concept of recommendation all started from social signals and it has clearly indicated that for iconic search engines the human factor (You) is the most important, crucial and organic than ever before. And how it works is based upon Likes, Tweets, and Shares.
Who are the Recommenders?
Of course the human element i.e. You, are the recommenders. Search engines are solely focusing to improve user experience every instance and that’s why they are being powered by some step or other. There is no need of someone who is thought to be a leader and whose recommendation is sought to be expert. In reality, any average social media user can be a leader and his recommendations are important as well as counted. Indirectly said, Your vote counts! Though it is true that recommendation from though leaders holds higher weight age than a usual recommender. In fact, the whole scenario can be explained like that you are consulting a lawyer or a doctor to get your issue solved for legal or health issue and just not relying on a novice for the best help! The best expert choice is always recommended.
What are the Means?
Social recommendations and Top Social Media Signals are everywhere now days. Surf any web page over the Internet and you can easily find social signals like Facebook, YouTube, Google+ and more somewhere on it. Recommendation there can be in the form of Facebook like, YouTube share, Re-tweet or any other way via social media bookmarking site. You are just telling people the worth of the information on the site and improving search results.
Though the trend is very common yet people are still trying to find how strong the role of these social signals has in SEO? Social Media Channels Are Search Engines for many people on regular basis. And with time their importance is increasing. But it begs a few questions:
- If Social Media Channels Are Search Engines actually?
- What’s the future of social signals in regards to SEO?
- How and why social signals improve ranking?
- How Social Signals Impact Search Engine Rankings
How and Why?
Social Signals have both direct and indirect impact on the social engines ranking. Direct impact comes from:
- Number of people who like your brand
- Number of Twitter followers
- Number of Facebook shares
- Number of re-tweets your brand has
- Number of people in your circles
Indirect impact comes from:
- Inbound links
- Positive Reviews
- Decreased bound rates
Why SEO via Social Media Signals?
World is becoming social and more social and today’s kids are tomorrows consumers. While they are prone to using social media platforms like Facebook, twitter etc. it is obvious in future, they will be used to spend more time on social platforms and interact with their brands on their Web. The search engines are far less popular than social networks now and the gap will increase in future as well.
A website that is trusted by your friend is personally more preferred as per the suggestions from search engines. This brings credibility to a website and better conversion rate plus loyalty. Words of mouth and referrals lead to more positive reviews as well as inbound links. There are 2 elements for SEO:
On site elements:
- Share buttons (like, recommend, tweet, bookmark, etc.)
- A blog
- Connect buttons (Like a Facebook page, Follow on Twitter, Follow on LinkedIn, etc.)
- Facebook page
- Twitter account
- LinkedIn company page
- Pinterest account
- Youtube account
- Guest blog posting
- Other social media platforms
Agreed by Top Search Engines:
Google, Bing, Yahoo unanimously agreed that they are adopting this method and trying to get recommendations via users through +1. Social media share from other social media networks and this fact is utilized by search engines in the same manner. The overall purpose of a +1 is to get human involvement. This impacts search engine ranks and which ultimately results in best quality search results. And since we are mentioning the +1, it does not necessarily means that Google + is the major player only. A thumbs up, a re-tweet, a link follow up YouTube Design Template, etc are all linked. The major difference is that they are not present next to the results from Search engines.
And is this actually required?
This change came out due to humans’ relevance and their preferences. None of the search engines wanted it unless they found the reality striking. Gone are those days …. When back linking was taken for granted. Back linking is an antique now and is pushing it all! It was before the introduction of Facebook, twitter etc. Google used to consider back links as a determinant factor for ranks. That time Votes, Likes, tweets etc. were complementary to back linking but things changed with time.
Social Signals came out as a new vote and web changed with the introduction of new profiles every day. The list goes on as Facebook, Google Plus, LinkedIn, Pinterest… and more. Things evolved with blog, discuss, comment, share, create profiles and network with other users and so on and the readers cold now participate, comment and have their own views published.
- Earlier: Write the quality content and provide a useful resource to get new Internet links to the content.
- Now: Get as much means as you can by any how: (profile links, commenting, forum signatures, social bookmarking, link exchange etc.) Get ranked in search results.
There are numerous benefits as well as disadvantages of such practices. Following such practices have led to growth of new and useless websites. They can get high ranks even though they are poor or useless. With Google update released, the Google itself affirmed that they are using such principals now. To be called a high quality website, you need right measure. Let’s have an example:
- Do you trust the information presented in this blog?
- Is this article written by some expert, who knows the topic or nature or is it just a shallow knowledge?
- Will you recommend this sort of knowledge to your friends?
- Are you getting what piece of information you had expected?
The major player is Trust Factor
The higher the trust factor is, the greater the possibility of being recommended and the higher the rank will be high. Trust is directly related to the reputation, quality, and authority of any website and can be improved by offering social votes, quality of content and positive reviews. Social media is composed of real people and search engines cannot ignore it.
How ranking is done?
Spam profiles, fake profiles etc also exist but that has not impacted much and real social media is least bothered about them. To improve the entire experience, search engines are promoting new ideas of evaluation where in a number of real human beings are set to evaluate websites, profiles and then rank their recommendations. Automated artificial intelligence are than created as per the behavior and techniques of human evaluators and how they did it. After that these automated modules are responsible for raking that now days we see in daily use.
What else can be better than humans themselves evaluating the quality of content and recommending it to others? Social Media is perfect place for such testers and advice seekers. People are smart now days and share only those information that are actually meant to be shares, revealed or worth it! High quality or relevant information, this is what we all love to provide. We share things that we have found interesting at some point of time be it a joke, a story, a news, or occasional information. Since we care about such events, social media usage has started influencing the search engines. Now, they can’t ignore social media. A site with lots of social media shares and recommendation tell Google that hey this is interesting and people love this stuff. Promote it! This gives signal that content there on that link is useful and relevant and they have to show it! And same goes for YouTube videos that show up automatically on search result pages many times.