Social Activity Equals Traffic, but Doesn’t Help in the SERPS

23 Sep
2013

Social Activity Equals Traffic, but Doesn't Help in the SERPS

So, as some of you might be aware of, I’ve exclusively posted the last eight or so posts only on social media sites. I purposely didn’t try to get any links in the traditional sense.

Results?

Traffic on the day of and day after the post on the social site, then zero.

For some, they think all a site needs to to is simply pump out content on all the social profiles you own and traffic will come like a bee to pollinate a flower.

But after testing this theory on multiple sites, it’s simply not true. Now, since this isn’t Moz, I’m not going to dive into the details and my test settings.

Just know this:

One site was well established (since 2007)
The other site was launched this year (registered 2012)

So, we had one site that had domain age and tons of links pointed to it versus a new kid on the block. It made no difference in the amount of traffic sent via social networks. Reddit didn’t care that the new site was only a few months old, it was giving them something to talk about for 5 minutes.

Just the same was for the old site that gave them some content to churn for about 5 minutes too. Both sites ended up keeping the links in each respective sub-reddit, and both had about the same number of people in each one.

Moving on to Stumbleupon, the results were just about the same. Again, no one cares about the age of a website, except for Google and us SEO people.

LinkedIn didn’t care either.

But what about the “social” links the sites earned? Surely they would have some value right?

Well, for the established site, it helped keep the posting on the first page for about two weeks longer than the new site. The topics were similar, and neither had any mention in the national news, so I felt they were pretty even in that perspective.

After two weeks, the older domain’s ranking dropped to the second, then third page of results, and that’s where it sits today.

From this test, I ran a similar experiment getting old school links for each posting on the new and old sites.

Results?

The rankings stuck for BOTH sites.

So, my totally un-scientific conclusion is what’s reflected in the title. When you need traffic to your site, social will definitely get you some. When you need a ranking to stick, you still have to get some old fashioned, hard earned links to keep it there.

Anyone else out there that wants to verify or defy this claim?

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Paul
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Get his thoughts at his blog (www.ranksurge.com) or follow him on Twitter (@semconsulting) G+ (https://plus.google.com/+PaulBliss3)

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