If you have a website then chances are you’ve heard of SEO or search engine optimization.  SEO is one of the first things you’ll do on your site in order to get more traffic and gain visibility among your target audience.  Keep in mind, however, that SEO is only the first step when it comes to increasing your visibility online.  In addition to optimizing for the search engines, you’ll also want to optimize for social networking.

SMO or Social Media Optimization,  is the implementation of a company’s social networking strategy throughout their website with the goal of increasing social business, maximizing sales & enhancing web visibility & traffic.  Implementing both SEO and SMO can take your web visibility and bottom line to an entirely new level!

Here are 3 simple tips you can begin utilizing today that will help optimize your website for social media.

Tip 1–Social Media Plugins: Adding social sharing buttons to your site is a critical step in the process of optimizing your website for social networking. Other plugins you might be interested in adding will help you analyze social media performance or offer your visitors a way to follow you on the various social networks.  There are many good social media plugins but here are a few we wouldn’t want to be without!

  • Sociable–Offers your site visitors the ability to share all of your content to most of the top social networks.  The plugin is updated regularly and is easily configured with many different customization options.  Some of the options include; floating icons, icons displayed at the top & bottom of each page and opening links in new tabs instead of in the current tab.
  • Social Media Widget – Offers link to your social media profiles so your site visitors can follow you and find content to share with their friends.  Many services are offered through this plugin and the icons are completely customizable with 3 sizes and 5 icons packs available.  You can also customize the message above the icons and add custom services if the social network is not included in the services offered.
  • Social Metrics – Analyze the performance of your posts and pages on the different social networks.  The information provided by Social Metrics is easy to read and provides clear understandable data that can be filtered by category and by month.   Understanding what your audience finds important can help you provide content they will share more frequently.

Tip 2 – Create & share better content:  One of the best ways to increase traffic to your website is to provide valuable, insightful and interesting content.   Are you creating blog posts or videos that answer your core market’s questions?  Especially important to remember is that videos, infographics & concise articles are shared more frequently than longer comprehensive content. Many articles are being viewed on a mobile device so long drawn-out content is hard to digest.

Tip 3 – Pursue Customer Feedback:  Do you regularly ask your audience what they need?  What questions do they want you to answer?  What services do they wish you would offer?  Are you meeting their needs?  Involve your community by creating a poll where they can vote on their favorite services.   Asking users to participate can make them feel more involved and encourage sharing!

These are some of our favorite tips for creating a social website that generates traffic!  What are yours?