New Frontiers: Facebook Social Graph Search & SEO

After Facebook’s Social Graph Search’s debut in January, the Graph Search has been gradually rolling out to the masses this July. Since unveiling, the social graph has made waves in the industry with the numerous benefits the social search can hold for search engine optimization. With Google’s recent emphasis on SEO social links, Facebook’s Social Graph Search directly affects SEO efforts. As social media and search continue to become further intertwined, marketers can now leverage brand media tactics to help brands improve visibility in graph search engine results.

But exactly what is Facebook’s Social Graph Search? Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerburg wanted to create a new search interface that provided a direct answer to a user’s query. Instead of going on a traditional search engine and getting keyword matched to results, Facebook Social Graph Search presents results culled from exclusive content shared on Facebook’s billion-strong user database. In other words, Facebook’s Graph Search is personalized based on the user’s social connections. In order to maximize SEO opportunity from the social graph, there are a number of social and search based strategies and tactics that can be utilized.

Facebook’s Graph Search’s Emphasis on Local Search and Small Business

Facebook’s Social Graph Search amplifies a word of mouth marketing approach to the masses. This natural form of search is similar to the cores of SEO. The graph search completely revolutionizes the way people search with the social graph’s intuitive natural language. Facebook Social Graph Search can help target business needs, such as understanding a specific demographic and identifying specific people at a certain employment.

Since the social search operates on personal data, the search engine blends together social and content data for individuals, which simultaneously impacts small businesses in a huge way. The graph search has a strong emphasis on local search rather than brand pages, since users are more likely to search locally for recommendations. Now small businesses with local pages will be on the same playing field as brand pages.

Optimize Business Facebook Page with SEO Best Practices

With Facebook Graph Search’s concentration with local businesses, SEO efforts should be focused on optimizing local pages. To ensure that your business’ page is included in the graph search, fully complete your business’ page. Verify your business’ location to make sure that it is correct. Rather than presenting the Facebook page as a singular brand page, focus on the individual locations the business might have to take advantage of the local search features with the Graph Search. In addition, content such as photos and videos can also be optimized. Post photos and videos to take advantage of the photo and video searches while minimizing your links. Likewise, encouraging likes and check-ins adds more exposure to the page. As always, practice good SEO by creating high quality content that people want to share to increase your reach. Search results are usually based on likes and engagements and with SEO; content is still king to make sure that the site ranks highly.

As Facebook maintains its status as a social media giant, it has an immense amount of information at its disposal with its platform still in the lead as one of the strongest and social networks today. With a clear understanding of how the graph works, take the steps to develop a SEO strategy to help you reap the benefits of Facebook Social Graph Search.

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