I was asked recently to give a presentation and speak at William Paterson University as part of a program on Marketing Techniques and Social Media.  But as I broke out an existing PowerPoint presentation I had used late in 2011 I quickly realized how much had changed in the world of SEO in just a few short months. 

In fact, many of the SEO principles like inbound linking have changed radically since as recently as 2010 and with the release of the new Google Search Plus Your World algorithm released earlier this year, social media has had an enormous impact on search engine marketing.

WHAT’S A BUSINESS TO DO?

The main problem I find for many small and medium-sized businesses regarding SEO and Social Media is not only keeping up with the fast-changing search landscape and various techniques within SEO but trying to decipher what the renewed emphasis on social media means and how it’s impacting SEO.

Why Your Business Needs to Care About SEO & Social Media

  • Social Media’s influence on SEO is growing
  • Search engine searches as a lead generator are growing
  • Social Media:  It’s where your customers and prospects are hanging out
  • If you don’t care your competitors will.
  • Growing evidence that social media is the new search (YouTube is the 2nd most active search engine after Google, never mind Facebook)

 The Future of SEO is Social

In a recent article published by Search Engine Watch, they go on to say: “The increased prominence placed on social media content, seeding, and sharing (social media optimization) has meant social signals are now a standard part of any search optimization techniques. The convergence of SEO and social media has really meant that change is no longer imminent, but upon us.”

And what they mean by “social signals” is the Facebook, Twitter, Google+, LinkedIn and other social media share buttons and widgets combined with activity among those properties via links, shares, embeds, etc.  Integrating social media properties into websites with updated content, and giving readers the means to share it all, is the new online marketing. 

My advice?  Update your website to include sharing capabilities if it doesn’t have it already, at the very least, and proactively focus on two or three social media platforms and get out there and participate on a steady and consistent basis.  And if you don’t already have a Google+ account, get one.  The jury is out at this point on where Google+ is headed but I get the feeling that Google won’t let it fail and increasing it’s impact on social media and SEO is only going to increase.  Grab it with two hands and hold on!