SEO in 2011: Focus on Backlinks or Social Engagements? Search Engine Optimization | May 19, 2011 | By Aaron Schoenberger

The days of simply relying on backlinks and massaged website content for high rankings in search engines have come to an end, however a new era of search engine optimization has begun.

In 2011 and beyond, social media will play an integral role in Google’s search engine algorithm, and the same applies to Bing, Yahoo, and the other usual suspects. The quantity of social engagements, namely Retweets, directly relates to search engine placement, which makes the use of social media imperative.

The ultimate question is: Should you focus more on building backlinks or spurring social engagements?

According to my research, backlinks are still very important, especially for long-term results, though social engagements are equally valuable and produce more immediate gains. For example, I’ve written articles centered around highly competitive keywords and within 24 hours they’re ranking on the top of Google.

At first I was stumped. Yes, the articles raked in hundreds of Retweets, but they had no backlinks (at the time). How were they placing on the top? I just didn’t get it. Then, after tracking a variety of articles from May of 2010 to June of 2010, I realized that Google’s search engine algorithm had covertly changed… or shall I say became social.

Moving forward, my suggestion for businesses and SEO companies is to utilize a blend of social media and search engine optimization. I’ve been saying this for over a year now, and my nose isn’t growing. I speak the truth, grasshoppas.

Aaron Schoenberger
The Brainchild Group

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