By John Merse
Marketing Manager, Union Street Media
It's not surprising that after Google took the reins off their newest Social Media platform, that REALTORS® would start to consider what effect it would have on their websites’ search engine rankings. You can bet that Google will place more value on its own social media platform rather than Facebook and Twitter.
You’ve probably had everyone telling you that you need to be on Facebook and Twitter, and to integrate their Like/Share/Retweet buttons into your website and blog. While I still maintain that Facebook and Twitter are important for Social Interactive, Google+ will remain a winning SEO tool for REALTOR® websites. There has been a slow adoption of Google+ but many have reported seeing increased search results. Being the first onto this bandwagon could be the difference from ranking on page one vs. page sixteen.
How Does Google+ Affect SEO?
Profile Content: Google+ allows you to create and add great SEO content into your business profile and posts. Using keywords that are important to your SEO marketing will allow you to increase the exposure of your information in search engines and tie it back to your website
Completely Indexable: Facebook actively prevents Google from crawling most of its content and limits information from regular profiles. Now that Google+ has entered the social game, this policy puts Facebook results at risk of dropping in rankings and losing important search real estate.
+1 Social Recommendation: Google has implemented this handy icon on all its organic and paid search listings. The more consumers bookmark or share via the +1 icon, the more authority you’re URL will gain. This button is Google’s form of reviews and/or recommendations on sites like Yelp. Make sure your office, friends and clients all take the time to click on this icon, and that it is conveniently located on your website.
Google Search+: The increased interest in Personal Search now forces you to become more involved in social media sites like Google+ as well as your website. Organic results will now start to be tailored to a users pattern and/or history. Having social sites and posts integrated directly into SERPs makes you realize that having a Google+ page, and promoting it, is a must.
This isn’t traditional search engine optimization, but it can’t be ignored. Optimizing for Google+ and content sharing is a new strategy that involves the participation of user’s that might be out of your control. Now more than ever, you will have to focus on providing the best customer experience possible and encouraging +1 recommendations everywhere you can.