This may be surprising as the nofollow attribute has been added to Twitter links. The nofollow attribute notifies the search engines not to follow a link on a web page. However, in a previous interview with Danny Sulivan, the Editor and Chief of Search Engine Land, both Google and Bing confirmed that they do in fact take Twitter into account when it comes to their search results.
In fact, you’ve probably seen tweets that are relevant to your search query show up as unique listings in the search results.
So, the bottom line is Twitter can still become part of your SEO strategy if optimized properly.
Before you go off tweeting about keywords that are relevant to your website, take note that each Twitter account is give a score. This is determined by the authority of the account and the quality of their post. So how can you increase your author authority and use Twitter to your advantage?
Twitter is a great platform for people wanting to share links of interesting articles and content they’ve read to their social network, so remember to always tweet your latest blog or site posts. Take some time deciding on the title of your article. Think about the titles that motivated you to click on the links attached. This is a simple way to drive traffic your way.
I recommend using Bit.Ly to shorten your URL links as it allows you to track the click through rates, as well as the ability to track and report on multiple Bit.Ly’s created for your URL.
Simply put: the more followers you have, the more people will be exposed to your tweets. It is a great way for people to discover your article and reference it in their own articles (which of course will throw some link juices your way). And don’t worry, Google indexes your actual website URL, even when the shortened version of your URL is shared, thus it becomes another way to promote your website.
TweetMeme is another useful service for tracking your links. You can track the amount of tweets by other people containing a link to your website and which of your tweets have been retweeted.
So how do you gain more followers? Perform a Twitter search using a keyword relevant to your industry or business to find people who share your interests. Roughly a third of these people will follow you. After one or two weeks, you can always unfollow those who are not following you using a service such as Just Unfollow. Here you will be able to unfollow Twitter users in bulk (Up to 50 per day).
Another simple, yet effective step is to place a link to your Twitter account on your website homepage through either a simple button or a widget displaying your latest tweets. You can find more information on how to do this here.
You can also include your Twitter link in the Global Footer of each page on your website (This is the information you wish to display on every page such as company information and copyright claims). This drives your Twitter URL up in the search results.
Just like your website, you can list your Twitter account in directories to help people discover your account. Submit your Twitter account to Twitter directories including Just Tweet it and Twellow and your RSS feed to RSS feed directories.
If you have time, there is always the option of creating social press releases that link to your different social media profiles on Twitter, Facebook and so forth to build quality links to your profiles.
As we previously mentioned, tweets now show up in the SERPs. And just like a normal webpage, there are steps you should take to optimize your Twitter page to encourage more followers. Remember these important points:
The above information can appear if your tweet is listed on the SERPs so you can optimize your Twitter page through your:
Username aka Twitter handle
Be sure to choose a name which is relevant to your brand, business, niche or company name. Also try to choose targeted keywords in your username which will help with proper indexing your tweets in the Google Search Engine.
This will turn up next to your profile. It should be different from your username but at the same time help you to promote your company or brand. To determine the most appropriate account name, think about what keywords people often use when searching for your company i.e. Apex Pacific Internet Marketing vs Apex Pacific Pty Ltd.
This is constantly indexed by search engines so choose your description carefully. The word limit is 160 so take advantage of this by using your most targeted and important keywords that users use to find your website.
Another simple way to drive traffic to your website is to place your URL in your Twitter profile. You won’t gain backlinks from it but it is still indexed in Google.
The content of your tweets is what will determine whether people choose to follow you on Twitter and re-tweet your posts. The most important aspect of your tweet is the ‘title tag’ as this is what will often show up on Google (Though your whole tweet will be indexed by Google). This consists of your username and the first 40 characters of your tweet.
You should make sure your important keywords are in the first 40 characters or your tweet won’t be linked to Google searches on your important keywords. There are 2 important considerations in regards to the title tag:
Create tweets that include #hashtags. These are important to your SEO as they are similar to keywords metadata. Using #hashtags is also a great way to capitalize on buzz words and trending topics that people are searching for in Twitter and on Google. This helps you gain maximum exposure for your Twitter account and increase the likelihood you appear in the Google search results.
These twitter SEO tactics are quite easy to implement and we encourage you to try them. Of course, by no means should you limit yourself to just the tactics I’ve mentioned. As the search engines continue to integrate with social media, more twitter SEO tactics will soon follow.
GTP has a twitter page at www.twitter.com/perthwebdesign