The next time you’re out and about, take a quick look around. How many people have their heads down and their eyes glued to a screen?
It’s no secret that social media has, essentially, taken over our lives. The latest data has found that people spend over two hours per day on social media. For small businesses, those two hours equate to a massive opportunity to reach new audiences for free.
Still, only 64 percent of small businesses have an active social media presence, and 22 percent of those who don't say they have no plans to change that fact.
There is no excuse for missing out on all the advantages of having a small business social media strategy.
Let’s take a look at some of the benefits you can enjoy when you decide to incorporate social media into your marketing strategy.
1. Boost Your Search Engine Rankings
One of the biggest benefits of social media marketing is a bump in search rankings.
Did you know Google looks at your social media presence when determining where your business will rank on SERPs (search engine results pages)?
Well, they do, and social media is becoming an increasingly important factor when it comes to SEO rankings.
First of all, social media profiles are usually pretty high on the list of search results.
Let’s use Starbucks as an example. The first result is their website. The next two listings (after local listings) are for their Facebook, Instagram and Twitter profiles.
Wondering what aspects of social media Google factors into your search ranking?
One factor that Google considers is your social media following. Brands with higher numbers of fans/followers are going to appear higher in search results, as long as they have high-quality followers. (So, don’t buy followers.)
Every time a follower shares your post, this increases the number of people who will see your post and builds backlinks at the same time. Creating engaging content that people want to share is key.
Another way an active social presence improves your search ranking is by increasing the number of inbound links to your website. Backlinks are hugely important to both organic and local search rankings.
Check out our introductory link building blog post to learn more.
2. Direct Traffic to Your Website
Along with giving you an SEO boost, social media marketing provides an easy way to drive traffic to your website.
It’s basically impossible to get all of your visitors from search engines alone, and social media opens up a whole other source for inbound traffic.
All of the major social networks offer you a space to promote your website. That alone can drive people to your website if they come across your profile and want to learn a little more about you.
And, every time you share a blog post or promote a service, you’re sending a link to your website out into the world!
3. Get More Conversions
There’s a reason it’s called social media marketing.
Social selling is a great way to get more conversions for your business!
You should look at every social media post as an opportunity for a customer to convert.
Pique their interest with a post about your latest blog article, and now they’re on your website. Keep them engaged, and now they’re checking out the rest of your site. And we know the longer they stay, the more likely they are to convert.
Not every single post is going to result in a conversion, but you’re certainly increasing your odds!
4. Gain Customer Insights
Social media is the perfect place to go if you want to learn more about your customers. Knowing your audience is crucial to the success of your business.
Social media can teach you all kinds of things about your followers — basic demographics, what’s happening in their lives, issues that are important to them or even something as simple as their favorite film.
Check out your page's insights to learn things like your audience's location, gender, age, language and most active time of day. Getting to know who you're speaking to should influence future post content.
5. Drive Sales by Increasing Brand Awareness and Fostering Brand Loyalty
Social media has the power to get your name in front of a huge audience quickly and easily.
Having a presence on social media makes it much easier for both potential and current customers to find you.
Once they’re following you, you’ll enjoy increased brand retention, too!
Your updates will pop up in your followers’ feeds, keeping your name at the top of their minds. And, the more they see you, the more likely they’ll be to think of you the next time they need a product or service you offer.
Building relationships (and customer loyalty) on social media can also be great for sales.
One of the ways you can do this is by engaging with your followers' posts and checking your notifications. If a customer tags you in a post or leaves you a review on Facebook, make sure to engage with them!
A study from The Social Habit found that 53 percent of customers who follow a business on social are more likely to be loyal to them specifically. That’s pretty powerful.
OK, that was a lot of information. Let’s sum it all up.
Social media is a great way to promote your products and services, raise your ranking in search, increase sales and improve customer loyalty. These are all great things.
But if you’re really feeling uncertain or just don’t have the time to dedicate to building a social media strategy, we can always give you a hand!
We have a great team that will create and distribute high-quality original content for the most popular social media channels. Click here to learn about how we can help you with running and managing your business's social media like a pro.
In the meantime, get reading about the latest social media information: