Have you ever searched for a company and their Facebook page came up in the search results after the company website or even before it? I’m sure you have; we all have. There is no doubt that there is SEO for your Facebook page. This guide will walk you through the steps of optimizing your Facebook page for the best search engine results.
As the rules and guidelines for SEO continuously change, the importance of search engine optimization does not. Internet users are constantly conducting online searches on Google, Bing, Yahoo, etc. to find what they’re seeking, and it’s imperative to incorporate a solid SEO strategy into your marketing plans. It’s important to note that Facebook has a powerful search feature, as well. Optimizing your Facebook page for SEO not only affects search engine results but also affects Facebook search results.
How Facebook fits into SEO
Although there is a lot of debate over the direct impact of Facebook on your website’s SEO, there is plenty of evidence to support that it plays an important role albeit, indirectly. An article by postplanner.com states that it specifically affects SEO by:
- building links through social shares
- driving traffic to your site
- attracting a relevant, and engaged audience
- improving visibility with keyword optimization
When you step back and think about it, it makes complete sense. The bigger your Facebook audience, the more exposure your business gets. This increased exposure leads to more links through Facebook shares, more clicks to your website, and more a more engaged and relevant audience which all affects your SEO ranking. Just as you need to optimize your business website for SEO, the same rules apply to your Facebook business page. Your goal is for people to easily find you on Facebook when they’re searching for your services or relevant products, so let’s look at how Facebook search results are returned to users.
Facebook Search Results
Facebook has a robust search engine on its platform located at the top of the Facebook screen. When a user searches for a product, service, or any other information, Facebook returns a comprehensive list of results. The results are displayed as follows:
Top results are posts, videos, etc. that match the search inquiry most closely and have the most Facebook attention (followers, shares, etc.), and these results appear first in the Facebook search results. When I searched for “digital marketing” in the Facebook search field, the results are broken down into Pages (DigitalMarketer.com came up first – no surprise there!), Groups, Places, Posts by Friends, Featured Posts, Photos, Conversations, and finally Public Posts. These results show up in a list, and as a user scrolls down, they can find what matches their search most closely. Keep in mind: The Top results vary by your search terms. I ran another search for “local restaurants,” and the order for the top results came back Places, Pages, Links, Conversations, Posts from Groups, Posts from Friends, and Public Posts.
Facebook also provides tabs on the top of the search results page to assist the user in finding exactly what they’re seeking. The tabs shorten the search for the user when they know specifically which type of content they’re after. The tabs displayed are Posts, People, Photos, Videos, Pages, Places, Groups, and Events. Unlike the Top results, the tabs on the top will remain the same across all searches.
The Facebook search platform is a powerful tool in Facebook for expanding your audience organically, so let’s look at how to optimize your Facebook page for Facebook search results. Showing up in the Facebook results not only extends your reach, but it ultimately leads to increased engagement and improves your overall business SEO.
Keywords Are Key!
As you did when optimizing your website for SEO, use the Google Keyword Planner to determine the best keywords to include on your Facebook page. You need to create a Google AdWords account (if you don’t already have one) to access the keyword planner, and you can register for free so make sure to take advantage of this invaluable resource. Once you’ve identified the keywords, they should be incorporated into every part of your Facebook page from your business description to you posts. I’ll elaborate more as we delve into SEO optimization for Facebook below. Remember, finding the relevant keywords is the first and most important step in optimizing SEO for your Facebook page.
Create a Vanity URL for your Facebook Page
A custom URL helps users find your Facebook page easily when searching for your business. If you don’t create a unique Facebook URL, the site will automatically create one for you, and it’s typically a bunch of jumbled characters that make no sense. This scrambled URL does absolutely nothing to improve your SEO, so be sure to create one that makes sense for your business. It is important to know you must have 25 likes on your Facebook page before you can create a custom Facebook URL. Don’t fall into the trap of trying to stuff keywords in your custom URL; this is not a good strategy for many reasons. The best option is to use your business name. For example, if your business is Square One Yoga, choose www.Facebook.com/squareoneyoga. It basically works the same way as creating URLs on your website for SEO purposes. In this case, let’s say the contact info website page for Square One Yoga would be www.squareoneyoge.com/contact. Making the URL reflect the content of your page improves search results and exposure.
To create your custom URL go to the Page Info section on your Facebook page and choose Create Page @username.
NOTE: If your business name is already taken, be creative and come up with one that incorporates your business name with something relevant. Let’s use the above example: If Square One Yoga was already taken, change your URL to add the location or a description such as SquareOneYogaCA or SquareOneYogaStudios. Be creative and be sure the URL is relevant to the content of your page for optimal results.
Make Your Business Name your Facebook Page Title
This might seem like a no-brainer, but you’d be surprised that some companies do not do this. Some try to use generic keywords to increase search results, but that’s certainly not the best strategy. Keep your branding consistent and use the name of your official business that matches your company’s website. Again, if the name is already taken, get creative like mentioned above in the custom URL section.
Optimize Your About Section
The About section is a crucial portion of your business page, so be sure to utilize every field of content Facebook offers. Add you About blurb, Description, Mission, Company URL, Business Address and Phone Number, and your Services or Products. This information tells the users (and Facebook) all the relevant information they’re seeking. It also helps your page come up in Facebook search results when users are looking for businesses that offer your products or services. The location information is very helpful for local Facebook search results.
Remember to include keywords in your About, Mission, and Description sections and provide as much detailed information to the users as Facebook will allow. The keyword integration will not only assist users in finding your page but also signal to Facebook your page relevancy when it delivers search results.
Use Keywords in Posts
When people use the search feature on Facebook, they’re looking for something specific. They may be looking for a new restaurant in town, a marketing service for their business, or information on a certain topic. By incorporating keywords in your posts, you improve the odds your post will show up the Facebook search results.
As always it’s important to use keywords wisely. Do not flood your posts with keywords, but choose the most relevant keywords that suit your content.
Add Descriptions to Videos
We all know how much Facebook and its user love videos, and quality videos tend to get a lot of engagement and shares. Be sure to add a content rich description to your video and incorporate the relevant keywords.
Add Captions to Photos
Captions are another valuable place to take advantage of the opportunity to use keywords and improve SEO. As mentioned above, when Facebook returns search results, photos are one of the categories. Include a caption that reflects the image and again, utilize your keywords for best search results and exposure.
Add Your Company URL to Posts
Inbound links are an essential tool for optimizing search engine results for your company’s website. Post blogs on Facebook by simply copying and pasting your company blog URL into the post field. Users interested in reading the blog post are redirected to your site to read the blog, hence increasing website traffic and improving SEO. The beauty of social media is the sharing of information between users, so a compelling blog post may be shared hundreds of times. Think of all the inbound links and increased traffic! Again, incorporate keywords into your blog description for maximum exposure.
Blogs are not the only posts to include your company website. Redirect your fans to your website for more information about your business, events, and any other interesting content your audience is after.
Engagement is Essential!
Always include CTAs (Call To Actions) in every post to motivate your audience to act. Post engagement is crucial in Facebook marketing. As you know, the more engagement your post receives, the more people will see it, and the more Facebook will recognize it as quality content. This again helps with your overall SEO.
You can use CTAs such as, “Like our page now and get 20% off your first purchase!” or “Share and Like for Your Chance to Win!” Create a CTA that reflects your content and will resonate with your audience. Urgency in your CTA increases engagement and action.
Link to Your Facebook Page
Just as in traditional SEO, inbound links to your Facebook page help improve Facebook SEO. Include a link on every page on your company website to maximize on inbound linking. Also, allow users on your site to share your blog posts on their Facebook page by providing a useful link.
Facebook SEO is Alive and Well
Facebook is an incredible platform to provide content and information to your audience and gives your audience the ability to share across their network. The potential reach of Facebook is endless, and every business should embrace the opportunity to maximize the opportunity. Now that you have all the tools to optimize your Facebook SEO, which as we see also improves your company’s website SEO, take the time to implement these tools and reap the benefits!
Any thoughts on this? Do you want to learn more about Facebook, SEO and social media related topics? Just leave a comment below or join our closed Facebook group for further discussions.