Any small business with a web-page knows that promotion is all about balancing limited time and funds. In order to maximize your site’s exposure you want it to rank highly for relevant terms in search engines and have a large number of incoming links from high traffic and relevant sources. The problem is that this isn’t particularly easy, and it’s made more difficult by the fact that it is what your competitors are also trying to do.

Google is increasingly valuing what it deems to be relevant links and rewarding sites with lots of original content. The SEO era of submitting a site to blog directories with little relevance to your niche is largely over. Google is also penalizing low quality posts and sites. With this in mind, it is a good idea to make social media sites and relevant incoming links the cornerstone of your strategy.

PageRank of Social Media Sites
PageRank is the measure that Google gives a site according to its relative authority and popularity. What you may not know is that there is next to no point in getting an incoming link from a spammy site with low PageRank, or a site with no content relevant to your particular niche. However, there are sites with high page rank that you can easily submit to for free and relatively easily. These include Twitter (PageRank of 10, the highest of any site on the internet), Facebook (PageRank of 9) and Google’s own plus service.

It’s also noteworthy that Google seems to weigh results from Plus disproportionately in terms of traffic, so it should be considered as a potential source of traffic and perceived authority. By becoming an author tied to the Google plus service, you will add credibility to your pages and receive a boost from Google. In short, while Plus may not be the next Facebook, it’s still worth looking into.

Getting Content Shared on Social Media
Of course, submitting to these sites won’t mean you are on the front page of them for everyone and that you will see a surge of traffic. But being shared on them will give you the double benefit of being seen by a lot of people (leading to traffic from the sites themselves) and also raising your ranking in Google (which will give you more traffic from organic searches).

Facebook is a particularly popular social media site both in terms of users and marketing. Facebook allows you to create your own page on the site, but it is in the sharing of your Facebook site and links through users’ statuses that you will be seen by the most people. Having a product or brand that they want to be associated with is one way to do this, but a lot of companies gain exposure by running a competition associated with “likes” of their page or posts. This causes the link to be promoted in users’ streams and also for users to repeatedly link the site, building a head of steam.

The use of existing and emerging social networks can greatly increase your brand’s presence and website traffic. Because of the nature of social networks, you can find your site shared and viewed by different demographics that will share your content for you by gender, age, geographic location and interest, all without much concerted effort on your own part. The marketing implications are obvious, making social media marketing perhaps the single best way to spend your limited funds and time.

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