Gone are the days when SEO alone was the key to success for search engine results listings. User behavior is changing and studies show that approximately 31% of consumers now use social media channels to find answers to their questions. Millennials and Generation Z are at the forefront of this change and it is expected that the trend will continue.
If you are developing your business and its digital presence, this is the right time to understand social media SEO. It will help you create a loyal community of followers and promote your page and business.
We have compiled an updated list of the best tips you should know before you start optimizing your online presence.
What is SEO for Social Media?
Social media SEO is all about optimizing your social media channels to maximize your reach and visibility, helping you generate brand recognition, build trust and help generate leads. Through optimization, you can end up higher on the search engine results lists, which leads to more clicks on your profile and your content.
The essence of SEO is to direct the audience towards the most relevant content, companies and individuals. SEO for search engines and social media are equally important in creating a credible brand identity.
Your audience is more aware than ever and makes decisions based on careful research. By optimizing for search results, you can get your social media posts and profiles to appear in their search results across all channels. And repeated exposure to your content and your strong presence on the platforms will make them choose you over the competition.
To effectively promote your services, your e-commerce business or your Shopify store, effective social media SEO strategies can significantly improve your online visibility and attract more potential customers.
Here's a list of top tips for getting the most out of your content creation efforts:
7 Proven Tips for Leveraging Social Media SEO
You need to take basic and advanced steps to secure the top position on social media search results. Here's how you can target your efforts for maximum reach and visibility
1. Optimize your social profiles for search
Any social media platform, whether it's LinkedIn, Instagram, X or Facebook, has a search function. By optimizing your profile title, your account will appear in the first positions and get more clicks when your potential customers search for your service, product or industry.
Here's an SEO-friendly profile title template for you:
Results you have generated or noticeable experience you have had | Your role at Company/Industry | Competence/Product/Service that you offer | Call to action
Sam Browne, who offers coaching services at LinkedIn for entrepreneurs, has used the same format for its LinkedIn title:
This template lists all the important details about what you do and how you help. You can use industry standard keywords and grab attention with your unique achievements. This method is one of the most important strategies for LinkedIn marketing.
Tips for founders: If you're building a product or service, don't forget to add it to your title.
Here are two ways it helps:
- Attracts people towards your journey: Audiences love transparency and really connect well as they witness the highs and lows of the process. Actually building publicly is a great way to attract beta customers and clients.
- Invites engagement, opinions and reviews: It encourages comments and engagement on your content, increasing your SEO. When you launch your first offer, you will have enough positive comments and good word of mouth to drive initial sales.
Tim Hanson does the same thing. He builds an AI tool for writing and collects his first batch of users using a discount. Take a look at his title:
2. Build a strategy for keywords and content clusters
A well-defined keyword strategy helps social media search engines understand the topics of your expertise and rank your content and profile for those searches.
For example, keyword research shows that search volume and competition are high for "personal branding" and relatively low for "black entrepreneur personal branding." If you belong to the black community, you should target the latter, as it is less competitive and will yield results faster.
Your keyword strategy will depend on your:
- Product or service offering and USP
- Overall marketing goals
- Your current position on the SERP
- The target group you want to reach
- Competitors with similar offers
- Search volume and intent with the rich keywords
- Your resources such as time, budget, skills and tools
As part of your social media strategy, make content clusters under each topic using keyword analysis tools like Ahrefs or Semrush. Here is an example:
Imagine you are the founder of a time management software and one of your content players is time management. Under this category, you can create content around longer and shorter keywords such as:
- Time blocking
- Productivity for entrepreneurs
- Techniques for time management
- Tips for goal setting
3. Use hashtags strategically to increase visibility
Hashtags are not dead, as most would like to believe. But the way you use them has changed. Those were the days when every Instagram or LinkedIn post had 15 or more hashtags and people used them based on popularity and what was viral.
Now it's completely different. As the algorithms get smarter, they reduce the number of impressions for the posts that have too many spammy or unrelated tags.
Here it comes – hashtags exist to help social media platforms find the most relevant pieces of content for their audience. You need to use social listening to find the most relevant hashtags for your audience.
Use these extra tips to find the best ones for you:
- Don't use too many of them. Aim for three to five in each post.
- Eliminate spammy or banned. They will get your posts deleted or simply not appear in people's feeds.
- Use the most relevant hashtags – the ones that best describe your post
- Avoid using too long or extremely crowded tags.
Alternatively, you can use hashtag generating tools and reduce guesswork and time spent on research.
4. Add links to direct users to your site
There are several reasons why you should add links to your website on your social channels:
- It increases the traffic and visibility of your website
- Improves the customer experience by helping them find and choose you
- Increases brand authenticity
Even well-known brands such as Semrush swear by adding links:
You don't necessarily need to link to your site's home page from your bio. Here are other options and why they work:
Option 1: If you run specials or offers, add a link to your web page that displays the offer.
Why it works: Adding offer links reduces resistance for your users and makes it more accessible.
Option 2: If you've reached a milestone and created a case study for your readers, link it to your social media page.
Why it works: This establishes authority and generates leads for your business.
5. Include social sharing options for website content
You spend tons of your resources creating website content like blogs, white papers, use cases, and case studies. But if it's not shareable, you're reducing your efforts.
Every day, your audience searches through the search engine to find relevant information. If they find something valuable on your website and want to share it on their social media or with their teams, you should make it easy for them.
In addition to increasing SEO, you can maximize the return on each piece of content and attract leads with your content efforts.
Akiflow, a time and task management tool nails this by adding social media links at the bottom of every blog post. Have a look:
6. Increase the frequency of content publication
If anyone says that quality is the only thing that matters, then they will be far from the truth in 2024. Quality and quantity are two sides of the same coin, and you need both to win the SEO race.
Quality ensures you address pain points, meet search intent and develop trust with your audience by delivering guaranteed value.
Quantity means showing up frequently on your social media channels to make an impression on your audience while telling the algorithm that you are active, relevant and care about delivering quality. Start by posting three to five posts per week and build up to posting every day.
Justin Welsh's LinkedIn is a great example to understand the impact of consistency. He posts daily:
Justin has grown his LinkedIn following close to 500k by pairing his strategy with a consistent posting frequency.
Here's how to set yourself up for consistency:
- Prepare a social media strategy to start with. It will determine your main topics, posting frequency and approach to driving engagement.
- Analyze your USP and your competitors' content. Based on these insights, start creating content in advance.
- Schedule posts in advance using management tools. It will reduce the chance of missing the post time.
The next time you hear of a company or individual with a large post reach and a large following, know that a large part of their strategy has been to ensure consistency.
7. Publish search-optimized content
Here's what a publishing journey looks like: Publish—Track—Analyze—Repeat!
Once you've published SEO-friendly content on your pages, the next step is to track KPIs for your posts. The secret is to track and analyze your social media pages and your best and worst performing posts. You'll be able to see what format, hook, CTA, post time and visuals work for you and what doesn't.
On top of that, you need to measure these metrics for a holistic idea:
- CTR (click through ratio)
- Bounce rate
- CPC (cost per click)
Make sure you compare these numbers to your competitors' numbers and industry standards to get a better contextual idea.
Alternatively, you can use social media tracking tools to create, schedule, track and analyze numbers. Here are some tools worth considering:
- Hootsuite: It's a marketing and management tool to help you track organic, paid and web metrics side-by-side.
- Sprout Social: It's an all-in-one tool to guide your social media strategy as well as analyze numbers.
- Mention: It brings all metrics to your fingertips and enables teams to monitor related data.
- Buzzsumo: It helps you research and generate ideas, track metrics, find influencers for brand deals, and automate your tasks.
Build your social media SEO strategy today
SEO is your key to maximum visibility among the right audience. When combined with social media, SEO can amplify your brand message and build a community of happy customers.
With the right strategy, research, and tools, you can become a social media SEO master and become an industry-leading brand. Maximize your marketing efforts by optimizing for SERPs and social media, both. There is no better time to do it than now.