Social media is becoming increasingly important as a strategy for building links and optimising for search engines. However, there are strict limits to how much this or any other single tactic can really achieve, as all good SEO professionals and web designers will tell you. What follows is a summary both of the merits of social media as an SEO link building tool and its limitations.

candidate-30004-2013-08-12-11-30-26

Image Credit

The Merits

One of the merits of social media is that it’s a source of links that the major search engines have been putting more emphasis on lately. The reason search engines value links in the first place is because the people behind the algorithms reason that the kind of content that attracts links is the kind of content that people find useful. The same can be said of social media – people share and link to content that they find useful, interesting and engaging. As social media has grown over recent years, so search engines have recognised its relevance as an identifier of quality content and placed it more and more prominently in their ranking algorithms.

Social Media is also useful because it integrates well with other established tactics for SEO and online marketing in general. A social media presence is a great way to share quality content such as blogs, and these are also good for optimisation in and of themselves. It also helps your business look more professional – providing it is well-done – and can be a great way to engage with customers directly, and to maintain a point of contact to ensure you stay in their minds for future business.

The Limitations

Most of the limitations of social media are the result of things not being quite so simple in practice as they sound in theory. A good website from a reputable design firm such as Viziononline and quality content are essentials, but even with those you may be surprised how hard it is to get links. People are very good at sharing funny cat pictures and celebrity gossip, but even professionals are not so quick to share useful business articles.

In short, the key point to remember is that while social media is incredibly useful as a complement to other marketing methods, it is not an all-encompassing solution on its own.