Here are some up-to-the-minute changes in social media.
- Google+, as far as dental practices go, is over. Let me be the first one to tell you that you can stop posting there. Google+ is morphing away from being a social media site, as it failed the “me too” challenge with Facebook. I know, in my book I told you to mirror everything you did on Facebook on Google+. Stuff changes–don’t shoot the messenger! However, you should still request reviews for your Google+ page, as they will still show up in a Google search, and are valuable for SEO and influencing searching consumers. [Thanks to Jason K. for pointing that out!]
- Your activity, likes, and recommendations on your Facebook page are no longer indexed by Google. No one knows exactly when this happened, but it’s over. So you get no Google juice (my term for SEO) out of your activity. This doesn’t mean you stop using Facebook. It’s still the best medium to show the experience of being a patient of yours.
- On April 21, Google is modifying its algorithms (how it ranks websites) with respect to mobile sites. If your mobile site is not responsive or reformatted to play well on mobile devices, it is going to hurt your ranking. Not the first time I’ve told you how important the mobile version of your website is.
- 74% of consumers will abandon your mobile website if it takes more than 3 seconds to load. Not the second time I’ve told you how important the mobile version of your website is. More than 60% of web searches begin on smartphones, by the way.
- Videos now start playing automatically on Facebook as people scroll down their wall. (Unless you turn the function off.) This is engaging FB users in a big way. How big? Well, media analyst Socialbakers’ recent study showed video has twice the organic reach on Facebook as photos. And Facebook also has twice the number of videos with 1 million views that YouTube has. That’s serious.
- Because of this, I maintain that patient testimonial videos are your best marketing tool. Also, make sure you post natively on Facebook, which means don’t link a YouTube video or other URL source, upload it using Instagram or straight to Facebook with your computer or device. If you don’t know how to get them done, read this blog post.
- Physicists now believe that gravity can leak into parallel universes, creating tiny black holes, and that the Large Hadron Collider may be able to detect them. This may not seem important now, but wait 50 years. You’ll be saying, “Yeah, I knew about that back in 2015!”
That’s it for now. But expect more changes. Social media is a rapidly moving target. And of course, if your website isn’t playing right on mobile, check out WebDirector.
And Jack Hadley, from My Social Practice, had this important point to add:
Fred, your statement under #2 is only partially true, “So you get no Google juice (my term for SEO) out of your activity.”
Cyrus Shepard, a super-smart SEO guy at MOZ, wrote the following just a couple of days ago… “The basic argument goes like this: ‘Google says they don’t use Facebook likes or Tweet counts to rank websites. Therefore, social activity doesn’t matter to SEO.’ This statement is half right, but can you guess which half? It’s true that Google does not use metrics such as Facebook shares or Twitter Followers directly in search rankings. On the other hand, successful social activity can have significant secondary effects on your SEO efforts. Social activity helps address two of the major tasks facing SEO: 1) Search engine discovery and indexation 2) Content distribution, which leads to links and shares.”
I wholeheartedly agree when you say, “It (social) is still the best medium to show the experience of being a patient of yours.” Spot on! However, in addition, there ARE SEO benefits that result from social media activity. We see it with our clients all the time.
Oh, BTW, if anyone wants to read Cyrus Shepard’s post, here is the link: http://moz.com/blog/seo-myths.