Barry Schwartz, Rusty Brick/ SMX
Bing and Google both use social media factors such as +1 and liking in their ranking algorithms. But they are limited in that, the content will typically (currently) only move up if the searcher has friends who +1ed or liked that content. The main factor is that the more content shared by people, the more likely people read your content, the more likely people link to your content. Links…
Shaun Anderson, Hobo-web
I sat with someone the other day who said social links were the new page rank. Bollocks . I've looked at a lot of link profiles. Social media signals don't beat LOTS of the "old" seo methods that aren't' supposed to work any more. Going forward – you will definitely need a mix. Then again – you should be using social for the benefits of social – not just organic Google SEO.
Will Critchlow, Distilled
I guess there are three main avenues: direct "share as ranking factor" effects (which are controversial and hard to measure), social SERPs factors I mentioned above where someone in your network drops a page directly into your search results along with their avatar and social –> links effects where social is the medium through which you spread the word about link-worthy content.
Honestly, we are still probably getting the biggest impact from the third factor – particularly twitter popularity converting to links from tumblr or other blogs.
We also like StumbleUpon. We are experimenting more and more with paid social media – e.g. FB advertising and paid stumbles.
Grant Whiteside, Amber Green
Social creates brand awareness and authoritativeness; this clearly influences conversions and many other signals that relate to search visibility. Search never really has worked in a vacuum and it never should have, at least google is growing up a bit.
Jane Copland, Ayima
Regarding Twitter, I am positive that Google has a very easy time differentiating spam from natural activity on Twitter. Analysing connections on Twitter would be a very simplified version of analysing connections on the Web, and they’ve done pretty well at that. There is no way that they can’t accurately map Twitter spam and weed out sites that are actually being passed around and talked about. They are smart to build their own social properties, but Twitter is still so much bigger and more active.
Neil Walker, SEO Mad
We of course use the standard such as LinkedIn, facebook and twitter but the key here is that forum are still a form of social media and we find that looking at engaging in comminutes is what tends to work best for SEO.
Neil Pursey, Web Growth
We are seeing it really important for two reasons:
1. Networking within the respective industry helps us to build relationships, which then results into links received from 3rd party websites.
2. Sharing content to get it exposed to your network has helped to bring engagement onto client sites.
We are using Facebook, twitter and stumbleupon to share content. We are finding that over the long term, stumbleupon is a great indirect link building platform. People find our content and then mentioned it on their own websites linking back to us (clients).
The better the content, the more viral it gets, the more inbound links you can get. Making standalone cornerstone articles on specific subjects is a great way to deserve links from other high reputation bloggers. I use mostly blogs and Twitter. Youtube and Slideshare also works fine. Most of all I use it for personal brand reputation building and to see what people find most interesting. If I have a product in a certain category I seek out the most prominent forums (read: high ranking) discussing related issues, put some good advice or info about my product, leaving some backlinks to my product (if allowed). If not I ask If any have tried anything like it, looking for ways to find an opportunity.
Have been experimenting a bit with Amplify and other services, they give great linkjuice, but for me being solo it can tend to be too many channels sometimes.
Steve Lock, Analyticsseo (iseo)
It is because of social ranking signals that I would recommend a key focus for anyone to target relevant bloggers as it touches traditional SEO link building, social and the other point is that so many influential bloggers are also authoritative from a traditional marketing perspective too.
Paul Rogers, GPMD
I think that unless you get a really significant level of social attention, it's unlikely to have a substantial influence on your rankings – although I do believe that the thousands of Twitter scraper sites will help improve rankings (at least in the short-term) as they generate lots of links to socially active websites.