In today’s digital age, social media has become more prevalent than ever before. It’s no longer used as a means of simply connecting with personal friends or family, but it’s now a way to access a world of information and people.
While this can keep you busy in your own life, the various platforms are helpful to several businesses as well. Social media contains a vast amount of data, insight, and potential customers that could help to grow any company. So naturally, businesses include themselves in social media.
However, navigating the world of social media can be a challenge because the algorithms behind each platform are very intricate. There is no perfect formula that gives you the most followers, engagement, and sales conversion rates. However, there are several tactics and tools that you can utilize to make your content and products as visible and engaging as possible to your followers on Pinterest, Instagram, Facebook, and Twitter.
You can even use your accounts to improve your site’s overall SEO and ranking. For some tips on how to do this, keep reading.
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Pinterest is a very powerful platform when it comes to SEO both on and off the platform. About 97% of the traffic on Pinterest is non-branded meaning there is a tremendous amount of opportunity for organic traffic to your account and engagement with your content.
It is used by over 300 million people ranging in ages, professions, and interests; allowing it to be useful for many industries. The key to Pinterest SEO, just like any other platform, is to fully optimize your account, content, comments, shares, etc. Essentially, every part of the platform can be used to better your SEO for your brand.
With Pinterest, it’s very important to keep in mind that it has its own search engine that is utilized by thousands each day. So, just like with Google, it’s important to do keyword research on Pinterest and draw data about what words and phrases will bring you the most traffic and engagement. However, Pinterest’s keywords are very different from the keywords you may use in google searches.
On Google, a user looking for a coffee table for their home may use specific search terms and phrases like, “IKEA’s coffee tables”, “What is the best coffee table this year?”, or “coffee tables near me.”
While they are each looking for the same product, they are using identifiers like store name, location, or phrasing their search into a question. However, on Pinterest, users generally use much broader search terms that produce much more niche-based results. This could include, “marble coffee table”, “coffee table DIY”, and “coffee table ideas.”
All of these are much more general terms than what is used in Google’s search yet they will direct you to a specific niche of product. So, when doing keyword research for Pinterest, be sure to consider the Pinterest language members use and find keywords within a niche that will bring you the most traffic. Include your decided keywords in bios, descriptions, and titles to make sure that your content is appearing in your target audience’s search results.
An essential part of optimizing your Pinterest account is dedicating time to focus on images.
Pictures are very much the backbone of Pinterest making the quality of each image so essential to how well your content does on the platform. While the keywords are very important, it’s important to understand that Pinterest users pin content to the boards on their accounts and will be able to see that pin constantly. Meaning if re-pinned, the image has the opportunity to make a good impression on the user multiple times afterward. Even considering components as simple as the color of your images is pertinent.
Typically images with an array of vibrant and dominant colors get over 3 times more re-pins than monochrome images. You’ll want to consider the size of images as well to ensure the best user experience.
Lastly, you’ll want to consider the fact that visual search accounts for about 600 million of the monthly searches performed on Pinterest, and the features used are rapidly increasing in popularity. Knowing that it’s important to treat the quality and optimization of your images as valuably as you treat keywords.
Additionally, be sure to build on the backend of your Pinterest images by adding things like alt text to optimize images. A Pinterest optimization tool could be very helpful in this process to streamline the array of tasks you may have to implement to improve Pinterest SEO.
Facebook’s algorithm is quite complex which can make understanding how to drive organic traffic difficult. Unlike some other social media platforms that are driven almost completely by keywords, some would argue that Facebook businesses drive organic traffic through incentivizing and active user engagement.
Incentivization is essentially using products or offers to encourage followers to share, like, and promote your product or page.
Posting contests, giveaways, and promotions for your followers to see is a great way to drive users to your brand. When setting up a Facebook contest or giveaway, be sure to establish guidelines for entry to ensure that you are reaping the SEO benefits of the strategy.
Commonly, this includes the requirements of following the page, sharing the post, and tagging friends on the post. By the user following your page, they are more likely to see your content and products. By the user sharing and tagging friends in the comments, they are bringing free traffic to your page and content.
Contests and giveaways are also perfect opportunities for collaboration. By tagging and working with other brands across Facebook, you open up the opportunity for their followers to view and interact with your page as well.
Engagement is key when it comes to driving organic traffic on your Facebook business page. Not only does engagement with followers and customers improve your brand reputation, but it can also help improve your content’s visibility. By replying to those who comment on your posts, you are driving new activity to that post which can give it a higher likelihood of being visible to the rest of your followers.
To quicken the process of incentivization and engagement on Facebook, Mentions’ social media management and monitoring system is the perfect solution. With the technology, you can monitor and analyze data from Facebook mentions and tags and use that information to create more engaging content for users.
Before entering the app, it’s important to remember that Instagram posts are not indexed by Google like Pinterest and Facebook.
This means that any keywords within photo captions and alt text will not come up within search engine results. Google only indexes Instagram accounts so it will be within your best interest to include an organic level of keywords within your account name and bio.
Aside from that, all organic traffic to your Instagram content will have to be driven from your in-app strategies.
One of the best ways to drive organic traffic on Instagram is to use relevant and quality hashtags.
Similar to a search engine, Instagram allows users to search for keywords and phrases in the form of hashtags. When a user comes across a hashtag, they are able to view all photos and videos that used that hashtag.
However, before just throwing many hashtags in your Instagram captions and stories, be sure to do research on what hashtags are the most relevant to your audience and will produce the most engagement for your business.
You’ll want to consider the content you’re showcasing, the relevancy of the hashtag to your niche, and whether or not you will be able to compete within the hashtag. Competition can be a very big hurdle to cross if you don’t understand how to tackle it. Here are some tips:
- Consider the number of posts attached to the post. In this example, the hashtag, “business” holds 66.2 million posts which is extremely competitive
- Take a deeper look into the photos “above the fold” (Meaning the first 9 photos you see without scrolling down the page)
- Average the likes and comments of those 9 photos and compare those with your own content engagement. If your average likes and comments are close to or above the average of those 9 photos, you’ll likely be able to compete within the hashtag. However, if they are below the average, try finding a similar but less competitive hashtag to use instead.
- In this example you can see that the hashtag “business sales” falls within the same niche, however, it has far less competition. Once again, average the number of likes and comments on all 9 posts above the fold in the new hashtag and compare them until they match your average engagement.
While they can be very impactful in driving users to your Instagram account, hashtags can be quite challenging to navigate because no one knows the ins and outs of Instagram’s algorithm. However, many companies invest deeply into the processes and analyses of Instagram’s SEO by implementing an intelligent automation or artificial intelligence system into their workflow.
This is extremely helpful because unlike other social media automation systems, intelligent automation doesn’t rely on instructions and data inputs. Instead, it uses machine learning to understand what methods and strategies work best for you on its own. The more time and data that is input into the system, the more accurately it can develop strategies and other tactics that may be helpful to your brand.
However, it’s necessary to consider how competitive each hashtag is as well. Similar to a keyword in a search engine, the more content, and posts under a hashtag, the less likely a user is to see it even if it is very relevant to your audience. However, if you’re able to find hashtags with lower competition yet still very relevant, this is the perfect approach.
Twitter is another social media platform with a great opportunity for improving “social media SEO” both on and off the app.
Tweets and Twitter accounts can be indexed by Google so keyword implementation is necessary. Also, similar to Instagram, proper hashtag usage is key. The challenge is finding a method that will produce the best results for your brand.
The quality of your tweets can make or break your in-app and search engine SEO for Twitter.
First, you want to make sure that your tweets are as “tweetable” as possible. For example, the length of your tweets, inclusion of images and links, and relevance to your target audience all play a role in how likely someone is to share your tweet.
Most importantly, are you tweeting information that others would want to share by retweeting, or will it be considered irrelevant to readers? While this seems hard to decipher, it’s very important to evaluate as 78% of engagement with a brand’s tweets come from their retweets.
You want to put an immense amount of focus on the language and verbiage you use in your tweets and maybe even run tests to see how successful certain elements are for your company. Small phrasing changes like the use of “Retweet” vs. “RT” within your post can drastically change its likelihood of being retweeted from 23 times as likely, down to only 10 times.
Depending on the industry you are in, phrasing tweets in a socially conscious and trendy manner may drive customers outside of your target to your page as well. In the example below, Wendy’s tweets and uses a video to reference the remote work that many are now doing due to the global pandemic.
By tweeting with language and imagery that is representative of current events and relatable topics, they can drive an immense amount of traffic to their platform.
In some cases, phrasing tweets to be conversational will help to drive engagement as well. Starting conversations and questions around topics that your target audience finds interest in will help to get them retweeting and replying to your tweet. Of course with more activity and engagement on a single tweet, you are much more likely to see increased traffic to your page as well. Adding images to your tweets can help to double your engagement and can provide each viewer with an enhanced experience.
Optimizing keywords within your tweets and on your account is pertinent since Google crawls both to appear in search engines. You’ll likely want to decide on a few target keywords and phrases to go after and distribute them frequently throughout your tweets. Including the main target keyword within your profile name or bio and building links to your Twitter page using that keyword will help to drive traffic and increase ranking in search engines.
As you may already know, hashtags are certainly a large component of Twitter.
Every day, Twitter showcases some hashtags that are considered trending and compiles all tweets that use said hashtag. This gives users access to all tweets within a topic.
Aside from those that are trending, users may search hashtags to find a collection of tweets under one subject. Commonly, tweets with hashtags drive twice as much engagement as those without. However, those with three or more hashtags show about a 17% drop in engagement. Finding that happy medium is key. Similar to Instagram, you’ll want to evaluate the relevancy and competition within a particular hashtag in order to optimize your chances for maximum impressions.
Also, consider starting your own hashtag to start a conversation around your brand. This will create a central place for users to access information about your brand and add tweets to the hashtag. Be sure to include your hashtag on all packaging, business cards, ads, or banners to ensure that customers can add to it.
Navigating “social media SEO” can be challenging. Understanding your platform and the behavior of your followers is key to optimizing each of your accounts. Considering keywords specific to each platform, image use, incentives, engagement, and hashtags will help to drive traffic to your pages and attain customers.
While there are several other tips you can try, start with a few of these and continue to evaluate and conduct research to understand how best to optimize your SEO across social media.