SEO Written by 1

We all know the important roles Facebook and Twitter play in SEO; but utilizing social media for search engine optimization goes beyond that.  There is another category of social media, with several social networking avenues, growing in popularity that plays a role in the SEO world as well: location based social media.

Over the past few years, new social media websites, with mobile apps to boot, have risen that fit the category of location-based social media.  The forerunners for this category are Gowalla, founded in 2007 but now owned by Facebook, and Foursquare, founded in 2009.  Since that time, big websites like Facebook (Facebook Places), Yelp, Urban Spoon, Google Places have jumped on the bandwagon and integrated similar concepts into their sites.  The basic idea behind these location-based websites is this: After creating an account, users can check into the restaurants, retailers, etc. to which they go; they may only check into places if there phone’s GPS reads their location as actually at the restaurant, retailer, etc. to which they attempt to check-in.  Users’ check-ins are then shared with their friends on that social media outlet; additionally, if users have the option to share their check-ins with Facebook and Twitter friends.  In return for checking into places, users generally either get virtual prizes, e.g. badges, or to take advantage of deals that businesses offer through the location-based website.  Therefore, there is both a social incentive and a financial incentive for users to utilize location-based social media services.  What location-based social media means to businesses, however, is something entirely different.  Businesses get:

  1. Free advertisement and public endorsement of their product/service to users’ social networks.  This means increased traffic to businesses’ physical location and website.
  2. More use of their product/service if they offer deals and offers; these are incentives for new customers, and encourages repeat customers and customer loyalty.
  3. Increased potential for ranking on search engines.  Foursquare, Yelp, Urban Spoon, among many others, host free pages with each restaurant, retailers, etc.’s physical address, phone number, hours of operation, and other information.  Businesses may either create their own account on these websites or claim their business’ pre-existing account.  This is the type of content that attracts Google crawlers, and is input into Google’s algorithm for determining businesses’ search engine result page (SERP) rankings.  It also allows business to insert SEO keywords; if done organically, this will also add value to businesses’ SERP ranking.

This guest post was written by Alexis Tate, a writer offering us a guest post about social media avenues to which businesses should utilize. Alexis writes on a variety of topics, but her passion lies in law. After realizing that lawyers represent themselves falsely to citizens in need of legal help, Alexis began writing educational articles to help citizens find a good car accident lawyer.

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