The world’s market is becoming more and more digital these days, and if you don’t have your own rest top on the information superhighway, you’re missing out. But it’s not as easy as just throwing up a website and suddenly having visitors appear — you need to nudge people in the direction of your digital presence. That’s where the ancient and venerable (read: at least a few years old) art of small business SEO comes in.
Until just recently, small business SEO was a pretty simple thing: you build some backlinks to your website, research some good keywords that you can easily attach the name of your business’ neighborhood onto, and put those keywords all over your website. In the last several months, however, the game has changed a bit — the search engines have started paying close attention to where your backlinks come from, and it turns out that they really like backlinks from social media sites like Twitter and Facebook.
That’s the modern small business SEO is all about the social media — one link that comes from a positive review on Facebook or even a “Digg” or other social bookmarking reference means significantly more than the same link from a blog comment or a forum post somewhere.
But it’s easy for a business to fake a link or two from the social media sites — the search engines have a tolerance for 1 or 2 ‘planted’ links. They certainly can’t argue with a dozen or more backlinks to your site from a pile of different social media accounts. That’s why your business should give your employees every chance to say what they think about you on Twitter, on Facebook, on Pinterest — wherever they want to, really.
The best part about the social media world is the power of one positive opinion. All it takes is one person who likes your product or service enough to say so on his Friendfeed, and that can realistically turn into a dozen new customers. Encourage your clients to use social media in addition to whatever your SEO company is doing — just be sure you’ve some kind of incentive to offer them, and you’re golden.