Search and social are linking more than ever
There are many ways that SEO and social media can overlap, using social channels like Twitter to find guest blogging opportunities, for example, or just for raising awareness of your content. The way that social shares and bookmarks affect ranking is not unknown, but now that Google+ shares and profiles are becoming integrated in search results, the lines between the two areas become even more blurred.
With the arrival of Google Search Plus Your World, the search giant have made it clear that they are very serious about social search, so you should really consider having a social media strategy as part of your overall SEO plan.
I would say that now is as good a time as any to get involved, here’s why:
History with Google matters
Historically, Google has given older websites weight over newer ones. It makes sense really, as an established site will have more of a track record online than a fresh one that nobody really knows about. Older sites also have the benefit of having a historical backlink profile (whether gained naturally or by SEO).
It should make sense then that the same applies for a social media profile. As a Google+ account is designed to tie all of your online and social activity to one person or company, it lets you establish a digital footprint that will include a range of activity from shares, +1s, being circled and vice versa.
The size (and quality) of your network matters
I would never say that the number of fans, followers, likes etc. that you have is the only thing that matters in social media – the real focus should be on the level of engagement with your audience. But – with Google+, the size of your network does have a direct impact on how many people will see your recommendations appear in search results.
Naturally, not everyone will be able to generate a network on Google+ the size of the likes of Mashable or certain celebrities – but that doesn’t matter if you approach it in a strategic way. The more, and sooner, that you are interacting on Google+, the sooner you can begin growing your influence. You can also think creatively for ways to find people related to your business (FindPeopleonPlus is a great resource for this).
What you do now matters!
Like all things involving SEO and social media, results won’t come overnight and you will need to place time and effort in to reap the rewards. Google+ offers such an advantage right now, though, that getting involved early and learning the ropes will be great ground work for a solid strategy that involves both social and SEO.