Nowadays everyone is talking about Social media networking / social media optimization(SMO). Most of the people have joined these social networking communities. Recently I was reading an article: Companies planning to increase their social media spend. Having a profile in social networking websites is becoming necessity nowadays which also helps spreading word of mouth publicity about your brand...No doubt SMO is a great tool to spread brand awareness, seek advice and get noticed in the social media. But one thing which really bothers me is how SEO and SMO interact with each other. Let's find out what they are and how are they related:Search Engine optimization (SEO) is the process of analyzing a website and modifying it to enable search engines to read, understand, and index it correctly. This dramatically increases the traffic to the web site.Social media optimization (SMO) consists of a set of methods for generating traffic on any website through social networking websites, business networking websites, online communities and blogs (macro blogging as well as micro blogging).
SEO and SMO both can be used to drive traffic to your website which in turn generate substantial leads your business
SMO is done to impress human being and SEO is done to impress search engine spiders. So in SMO we need to write impressive content to seek the attention of social media, whereas in SEO we write content for the website with proper usage of keywords grab the attention of search engine spiders.
For SEO we need to change the titles, metas headers etc of a website so the website gets modified whereas for SMO we use social networking websites to spread the brand of our website.
SEO has been emerged long time back whereas SMO has come into existence recently after 2005.
Any person with a little bit of knowledge of internet can do SMO whereas quality SEO can only be performed by SEO expert. Google really gives importance to Search engine optimization as it is directly associated with the page rank, which demonstrates the importance of the webpage in search engines whereas SMO is not at all related to the importance of the webpage.
The structure of the website is not so important when doing SMO, which is an essential aspect of SEO.
There are certain rules (which keep changing by Google) to perform SEO (example title, meta description, meta keywords, headers, alt tags etc), whereas for SMO there are no rules laid as such. Only thing one should keep in mind while doing SMO is that SMO is done to interest human being so one should never use social networking websites to directly sell something rather it should be utilized to make relationships with the prospective clients. Make it personal and interesting for others so that people would like to connect to you. So the key point is while doing SMO "keep it human"
SMO costs you nothing or it costs you very less whereas to get effective SEO services requires a lot of in-depth study as well as hard work so one should be ready to pay a fairly good amount for SEO of their website. Even though there are many cheap SEO companies have appeared recently in the market who barely knows anything about SEO but they provide cheap SEO services. They would just write metas and title and metas for their client's website without doing any competitive analysis of keywords. Whereas expert SEO companies search out profitable keywords for the webpage. Profitable keywords are keywords that have a more amount of searches, but slight competition. This requires experience, lots of in-depth studies and analysis.
SEO is a long term strategy. Initially to get the results of SEO will take some time, but once you start getting visibility of set of keywords in the first page of search results, even after you stop taking the SEO services the results will stay there. Whereas SMO is an ongoing process you need to stay connected using social networking websites and keep doing macro blogging in order to be in search results.
Search engine gives you instant result on any query whereas if you are asking some question through Social networking websites it will take some time, so if your website is well optimized you will get noticed quickly through search engine which is an added advantage of doing SEO.
When to initiate SEO and SMO: The basic aim of both SMO & SEO is to enhance traffic to the website which will help you grow your business. But the basic question which arises in one's mind is when to start what? The answer is simple. One should start SEO first to ensure the first page visibility and then slowly dig into SMO, so that when your SMO users start looking for you have strong web presence in the search engines.How to increase the web presenceThere are various methods to increase visibility in Social media websites (Linkedin, facebook) like one can join various groups of common interests and then part take Q and A and discussions board etc. Or you can start following other people in social networking websites like tweeter and regularly post the tweets. By doing this you can establish yourself as a brand and personalize their relationship with their prospective clients.What is important SMO or SEOIn today's age search engine has become bare necessity to find information on products, services or any other information. Still common man generally goes to search engine to find information on anything and then further refer Social networking websites to get feedback from different people.So Social networking websites can be used for brand monitoring, you can use social networking websites to keep track of what has been said about your company and so you can respond those feedbacks to give a personal touch to your customers and their opinions could be further used for discussions in your company.Now we can say that the importance of SEO will remain there. Social networking websites can be used to as a backup to get opinions, spread contacts which can get converted into business in future. Basically using SMO you can create a personal feel which is otherwise very difficult for you to create using SEO alone. SMO gives you opportunity to personally talk to your prospective clients and solve their queries as human being, which is really essential to get business but at the same time strong visibility in search engines is also essential.Combine SEO and SMO to grow your online businessSo we can conclude that optimizing your social media presence can positively trigger organic/natural search engine listings as search engines are paying attention to social networking websites. But without doing SEO the webpage doesn't seek importance in search engine spiders.So my view is to combine SEO with SMO is the smarter way to grow your business. Do let me know your views, information about how SEO and SMO can be linked together in order to gain maximum output.