Beyond Google and Bing: Optimization for Social Media | Blue board | Open mic

If you only optimize for mainstream search engines, you’re going to miss the opportunity to reach a much larger audience – those who use social media platforms. Google, Bing, and other popular search engines can deliver great results, but they’re not the end of SEO. In this how-to guide to digital marketing, you’ll find out which social media platforms you should optimize your site for as well.

Search engines are pretty much everywhere, even in places you might not think about. When we talk about search engines other than Google, you probably think of common alternatives like Bing, DuckDuckGo, or Yahoo first. However, you have to think beyond these more traditional search platforms if you want to see the best results.

Look at it like this: If you created a perfect baking recipe, you wouldn’t just use it in one or two recipes. Instead, you would want to use it for every recipe that requires baking. The same principle applies to SEO. If you only apply your skills to Google, you are not maximizing your investment in that content and potentially losing a lot of traffic.

SEO for social networks

Social media optimization has been important to businesses for several years. However, the Covid-19 pandemic has seen a further increase in social media engagement. Additionally, it has changed the times when consumers are most responsive to ads and posts. With over 3.6 billion users worldwide, you have enormous potential to reach a much larger audience.

Optimization for Facebook

Facebook has 2.89 billion active users every month. If your ideal clients are here, you need to find a way to stand out and attract them.

Like most SEO practices, to optimize for Facebook, you need to focus on keywords. Facebook Ad Manager is a great tool to use to see what keywords your target audience is focusing on.

Facebook Ad Manager’s detailed targeting tool shows how many people are interested in a particular topic, which can be an indication of its search volume.

In addition to the Ad Manager tool, the standard keyword research tools are also invaluable. They show you the terms people are looking for in your industry. Typically, consumers will use the same type of search terms on Facebook as they do on Google.

When you have a list of important keywords, you can get down to business optimizing your content and profile. You can easily place them in the following:

Your Facebook page:

  • About the section
  • Contact details – You need to keep them up to date to keep showing up in search results
  • Page Name – This is basically a meta title, including specific keywords

Your content:

  • Status updates
  • Meta titles
  • Descriptions of External Shared Articles
  • Image captions

Optimization for Pinterest

Pinterest has about 2 billion searches per month on average. Marketers see the platform as a visual search engine. So how can you make sure your business is found in these searches?

The platform displays the best optimized pins to meet each user’s query. Like Google and Facebook, it starts with a good keyword research tool.

You have several options when it comes to keyword research. You can use popular tools like SEMRush, or you can manually use the search bar on the site and search for autofill suggestions. Other options include the Pinterest Ads Manager and the Pinterest Trending Tool.

Pinterest trends show the search interest behind particular keywords

When you have the right keywords, use them throughout your profile. You should also use them on your pins, as well as your boards.

Like standard SEO practices, keywords should be used naturally in the following areas:

Your pins:

  • Image alt text
  • Pin Description – 500 characters
  • Pin Title
  • Pin overlay text to images (if using)

Your profile:

  • Account description – 160 characters
  • Display a name

Your boards:

  • Names of boards
  • Table descriptions – 500 characters
  • Board cover (if used)

Once your content is fully optimized for the right keywords, you’ll need a good pinning strategy. You’ll want to focus on a variety of pin styles, rather than just static images. It is also recommended to pin regularly, even if only once a day. Also take the time to determine the best time of day to make a pin. You can use Google Analytics to help you here.

The trick is to experiment with new tactics. Once you’ve tried a few, you’ll know which one is best for your business.

Optimization for Instagram

Instagram has around 1 billion users per month. If you want to make sure that your content is delivered to the right people, you need to understand how the platform’s search function works.

Again, the solution begins with keyword research. KeywordTool is a good tool to use here which can show you the monthly keyword research volumes in Instagram’s database.

Using the site search feature, you find content and accounts based on many factors. These include a brand’s username, associated hashtags, and the location of a tagged post. Recently, it has been updated to include suggested research topics as well. This shows results based on engagement and content interests.

You can use keywords to optimize your Instagram content in the following ways:

Your content:

  • Site
  • Captions
  • Hashtags – You can include up to 30 in a standard post and up to 10 in a story

Your profile:

Unlike Google, which doesn’t look at the number of clicks on your site, Instagram displays content based on its level of engagement. This means that the difference between getting noticed on Instagram and traditional search engines is “engagement metrics”.

You need to make sure you’re posting at the right time. Do this when most of your audience is online if you can.

Optimization for Twitter

Did you know that Twitter now has around 353.1 million monthly active users? Google also lets you extend your Twitter reach even further.

In 2015, Google gained access to live tweet data from Twitter. This allowed the search engine giant to index and present the tweets most relevant to a user’s question in SERP search engine results pages. This is great news because it means that once your Twitter profile and content is optimized, you are more likely to be found on both Google and Twitter.

Initially, hashtags were used as keywords on the platform. However, this is not as prevalent on the site anymore. That being said, researching hashtags is crucial when it comes to choosing which ones to use for your own content.

The good news is that KeywordTool has a database of keywords, as well as potential Twitter hashtags that you can use. This will give you a good idea of ​​which ones you should be using for your site.

You can also manually search for Twitter hashtags on the platform if you want to see what is currently in use. It can help you create trending specific content.

When you have your best keywords, you can fit them naturally into these parts of your profile and content:

Your tweets:

  • Hashtags – Don’t use too many as it will look like spam, aim for around three hashtags maximum
  • Text of your tweets

Your profile:

  • Bio – Remember to keep it up to 160 characters
  • username

In summary

While it’s important to optimize your content for sites like Google or Bing, these search engines shouldn’t be your only goal. SEO for social media can help you increase your reach and sales to billions of daily users.

So, the next time you put together your digital marketing plan, be sure to launch your SEO much more broadly than traditional search engines.

Finally, Google is reportedly working on deals with Instagram and TikTok to index their video content in search results. So, keyword research and optimization of video content on social media will likely be more important than ever.

By Anna Hall, SEO Manager at Blue Array.