The answer to this question is ‘yes’, Facebook ‘Likes’ do have some affect on SEO. Both Google and Bing have admitted that they use ‘social signals’, such as Facebook ‘Likes’, to help rank search results.
In fact, if you have a popular Facebook Fan page with a great deal of fans, it will certainly rank higher in the search engines than a Facebook Fan page with very few fans.
Additionally Google has a Beta test version of social search under its Labs tools that directly signals which social media outlet it has pulled results from, as well as the “+1 button” which is it’s answer to the Facebook “Like” button.
In SEOMOZ’s white board, Rand Fishkin revealed hard numbers that SEOMOZ had obtained from recent testing which gave direct correlation evidence regarding Facebook and Twitter activities and search results. This study shows that comments and shares appear to have more impact than Facebook ‘Likes’, but all showed a correlation, including Twitter.
So from all this, you can say that Facebook ‘Likes’ do affect SEO.
But the real question is this: How much weight does a Facebook ‘Like’ carry in SEO?
Facebook ‘Likes’ Affect SEO | How much affect does it have?
If you are a web master, where do you rank Facebook ‘Likes’ and the role is plays with SEO with other SEO strategies?
The answer is that focusing on Facebook ‘Likes’ is probably the least important strategy for SEO. Focusing on proper linking techniques, for example, weighs far heavier on SEO rankings than Facebook ‘Likes’.
Facebook Likes may be slowly working its way into the Google search algorithm but all this truly means is that you should not put all of your eggs in one basket and have a more diverse approach to search marketing. Good unique content and a strong link profiling are still the foundations for a profitable ranking and your social media marketing should work almost parallel to traditional SEO practices.
Facebook ‘Likes’ will promote social proof that you have good unique content and may help not only increase the likelihood of the visitor reading your article, but will impact whether or not they will share your blog.
Facebook ‘Likes’ Affect SEO | What’s the value?
Our company, Black Box Social Media, has tested the effects of Facebook ‘Likes’ generating more ‘Likes’ on an article. Each week, we send out a newsletter to our readers with 5 popular articles. Some of these articles are freshly written, and as such, have less than 10 ‘Likes’. Then we’ll send out a link in the same newsletter to a more seasoned article that has over 100 ‘Likes’ on it.
What we’ve found is that an article with less than 10 ‘Likes’ won’t have many more Facebook ‘Likes’ added to the article. But the article with 100+ ‘Likes’ will increase it’s ‘Like’ count anywhere from 20-30%. As such, our analytics show that these ‘seasoned’ articles will have more views than the newer articles on the same newsletter. Why is that?
When these articles are ‘Liked’ they are then shared on other Facebook pages and viewership of the article increases, thus leading to more ‘Likes’ and more views. So while focusing on Facebook ‘Likes’ may not move you up significantly in the search engine rankings, they can certainly help increase your viewership and clicks to your blog page.
And isn’t this the point to social media marketing?
About Black Box Social Media: Black Box Social Media (BBSM) is a ‘managed for’ social media marketing group. Social media allows an unprecedented opportunity for businesses to connect and interact with their current and potential customer…if they effectively utilize social media. We specialize in creating and implementing proven, successful social media marketing plans for their clients. BBSM has also created Social Media in 7 Minutes (SMI7M) is a revolutionary do-it-yourself online training program designed to not only educate small business owners on how to apply social media into their marketing plan, but also to provide a practical tool which will allow them to implement their marketing plan in just 7 minutes a day. This product is designed for small business owners who want to learn and implement a social media marketing plan for themselves without paying thousands of dollars for employees or outsourcing companies.