Social interactions like +1s on GooglePlus, Facebook comments, likes, and shares, etc. are called social signals.
Social signals impact search engine rankings and Google has been elevating the importance given to social signals as part of its ranking algorithm since late 2010.
Note: Google encourages website owners to build their social presence as a long-term investment to drive qualified traffic, rather than aiming for short-term benefits like search ranking placement. Matt Cutts, the head of Google’s own web spam team has stated that Google takes a cautious approach when it comes to social signals, as social trends and relationships can change at a moment’s notice. Without a full ‘map,’ Google is understandably reticent to assign more importance to the social sphere over other aspects of their search algorithm. In summary, Google’s strategy is a sensible one - “wait and see” how things develop over time, as sites that provide value develop longevity, trust and authority, and these are the websites that Google naturally wants to display higher in its search listings.
Social Signal Sources
Social sites that search engines like Google look to for measuring social signals include:
With almost 2 billion monthly active users, Facebook is the largest social media network in the world. Research shows that an average post can reach up to 150,000 users, so even if it seems like Facebook is not driving droves of customers to your site, you should not be quick to dismiss Facebook as an important part of your business strategy, as Google processes social data and information from Facebook to help determine your search rankings. In fact, Facebook seems influence search rankings more than other social media sites, like Twitter orGoogle+.
(Number of monthly active Facebook users. Source: Statista.com)
After Facebook, Twitter is the next largest social media site in the world, with over half a billion tweets sent out every day. Twitter has a significant amount of influence on the cybersphere and places great importance on tweeting posts that provide great value to readers over the number of tweets sent …
(Over 500 million tweets are sent each day. Source: InternetLiveStats.com)
Google’s own social networking site naturally carries great authority online, even if it has not reached the same level of growth and take up as Twitter and Facebook.
(More people are interacting socially on GooglePlus every year. Source: InternetLiveStats.com)
In addition to the big 3 social media giants listed above, there are a number of other social sites worth getting to know, like Pinterest, LinkedIn, StumbleUpon, Digg, and Reddit.
(A number of social media sites provide important signals that can affect your search rankings)
Social Signals – Which Ones Should You Pay Attention To?
Search engines track various social signals, including:
- Facebook – e.g. how many Facebook likes, comments, and shares you have, growth rate of shares and likes, etc.
- Twitter – e.g. how many tweets and retweets your site has, the authority of the person sending a tweet, trending topics, etc.
- Google+ – e.g. who is following you (influential users), how many people are following you, number and authority of +1s, etc.
- Other sites – e.g. growth rate of Pins and re-Pins on Pinterest, comments on StumbleUpon, etc.
- Not so obvious signals – In addition to the above, there are other not so obvious social media-related factors that can indirectly influence search traffic and rankings. These include desirable and negative factors, such as age and authority of your social media account [positive], and whether your site is deemed to be of poor quality by other users [negative].
As a business owner, it’s not only important to find ways to grow your social media presence, but also to be able to track and analyze social signals in order to improve your business results.
(Using social media marketing can improve your business results)
Social media monitoring allows you to find insights into your brand’s online visibility on social media, spy on your competitors, measure the impact of campaigns, avert crises, and identify market opportunities. It can also provide you with vital data about emerging trends and what clients and consumers are thinking about specific businesses, topics, brands, or products.
As a business intelligence tool, being able to track conversations and activity on social media is invaluable. Using social media monitoring as a form of business intelligence, however, is a complex undertaking, typically carried out by various people including market research, digital reputation managers, marketing professionals, professional sales reps, social marketing agencies, and social engagement and community personnel. Typically, smaller businesses do not can’t afford to pay a social media monitoring service to continually track their coverage in the media.
Fortunately different technology companies have developed a range of tools that facilitate the active tracking of a variety of social media channels, enabling companies to identify and even predict consumer behavior around their products or brands so they can respond proactively to conversations and engage with online users in a timely fashion.
Go here to learn more about social media monitoring tools and technologies that you may want to check out:
(Are you measuring your social signals effectively?)
This article discusses a simple, yet effective plugin for WordPress-driven sites for tracking social signals and growing your social media influence online.
Our Recommended WordPress Product Is …
Social Metrics Pro – Social Analytics WordPress Plugin
SocialMetricsPro is an easy-to-use social media analytics premium WordPress plugin that is designed to make improving your social media exposure uncomplicated. It is built on a simple premise – SocialMetricsPro measures and tracks how each signal is performing and returns either a red or green indicator. The site owner’s goal is simple … convert more red squares into greens.
(A standard operating procedure that anyone can operate … turn all the reds into greens!)
Colors indicate relative popularity. This simplifies your social analytics. Posts that get shared the most show up green. Posts with low social media activity are colored amber and red.
The plugin developers tested Social Metrics Pro on a network of 2,000+ websites over a period of 3 months. During this period, all they focused on was turning the “reds” to “greens” and then keeping everything “green”. According to the plugin developers, they were able to notice that their top 10 best performing sites saw an improvement of up to 360% more traffic, 410% more keywords ranked in the first page of Google and they also experienced a 310% increase in revenues.
(According to the plugin developers, focusing on improving your social marketing campaigns can affect your search engine rankings, traffic and revenue!)
Benefits Of Using SocialMetricsPro
Below we have listed just a few of the benefits of using Social Metrics Pro to track Likes, Tweets, +1s, Pins and more directly from your WordPress Dashboard on your website:
Ready To Use In Minutes
Social Metrics Pro installs just like every other plugin. Just upload it to your Plugins folder via your dashboard and activate.
Very Simple To Use
As mentioned earlier, your job is to turn reds into greens. SocialMetricsPro tracks and measures social signals so you know where to put more effort and which need to be better optimized.
Track The Social Signals You Care About
SocialMetricsPro lets you track and monitor social media activity across leading social networks like Facebook, Twitter, Google+, Pinterest, StumbleUpon, LinkedIn, and Digg.
SocialMetricsPro helps you get answers to questions like:
- Which social networks work best for my site?
- Which posts are performing the best on these social networks?
- Which are my most popular posts?
- And more …
With SocialMetricsPro, all this information can be accessed with just one click.
(Social Metrics Pro actively tracks the sites that you care most about!)
Social Metrics Pro provides WordPress users with a number of great features. Below we have listed just some of these features:
- Quick and easy to install and use. Ready to go to work in very little time.
- Social Metrics Pro Is Widgets And Extensions Ready. You can extend the plugin’s functionality using built-in and external widgets. Access the latest stats right on your WordPress admin bar, display social content on your sidebar or anywhere in your site using widgets.
- One-click auto-upgrade functionality. Update Social Metrics Pro with a single click via the WordPress Updates page, or update it manually. You can also choose to be notified via email when a new version is released.
- Plugin uses minimal server resources. Reporting is fast, consuming little server resources. Report generation also displays the amount of time used to retrieve information and the server resources consumed when gathering and compiling data.
Additional plugin features include:
- Sort, Search & Filter Features: SocialMetricsPro allows you to sort, search and filter the information however you like. You can perform keyword searches to study topic-related posts, and even filter the results by post type, category, post authors, or publishing date.
- Export Data To Excel: You can export and plot filtered, sorted data and custom queries in Excel for further analysis. Data can be exported in tab-delimited and comma-separated file formats, and imported to the spreadsheet application of your choice.
(SocialMetricsPro is really simple to use … just change all the reds into greens!)
Feedback From Users
Here are some of the testimonials that plugin users have published about the SocialMetricsPro plugin:
”Our entire marketing strategy relies on social media. Each post on the site has viral potential, but we needed one place to see which social networks are performing the best for us…We went ahead and got the PRO Version of Social Metrics.” Syed Balkhi, Founder of List25 and WPBeginner.com
”Social Metrics is one of the recipes for Social WordPress. You can integrate it quickly and easily on your WordPress site to view your performance on social networks” Jean-Francois Arseneault, Arseneault Consultation
SocialMetricsPro – Useful Tips
A step-by-step, practical guide showing you how to optimize your campaigns and improve your social media strategy (i.e. turn reds into greens) is also included.
The plugin is well-supported, and comes with free lifetime updates and support, backed by a risk-free, 60-day, 100% money-back guarantee.
Product Licensing Pricing
Social Metrics Pro plugin is available in two editions:
- Single Site Licensing – This license enables you to set up SocialMetricsPro on 1 web site only. Includes free lifetime updates and support. Price = $27.00 (one-time).
- Multi-Site License Edition – This lets you run SocialMetricsPro on unlimited sites that you own. Cost includes free lifetime updates and free support. Cost = $47.00 (one-time).
Note: Price details for the product can vary, depending on whether there are any promotions or limited-time special offers. Currently, the product is selling for the pricing shown above. This may not be the actual price set by the software developer when you visit the product site and you may be shown additional upsells or one-time offers after you’ve purchased.
Check the plugin’s website for the current pricing information here:
SocialMetricsPro requires a self-hosted installation of WordPress and can be instantly downloaded after purchase.
As mentioned earlier, with the rising importance of social sites like Twitter and Facebook, search engines like Bing and Google now take into account a range of social signals when determining a site’s ranking.
No website owner can afford to ignore the importance of social media. Social Metrics Pro solves the problem of how to find a simple, time-saving solution that gives you instant feedback on the success of your social marketing strategy and shows you where and how to improve your results.
Social Metrics Pro is ideal for beginners and advanced WordPress users alike. It tracks Tweets, Likes, Pins, +1s and more right from your WordPress admin area.
We recommend getting Social Metrics Pro if you own or manage WordPress sites and would like to avoid wasting resources on over-optimized social media campaigns.
For full details, check out the plugin here: SocialMetricsPro – Social Analytics Plugin For WordPress