While we may not know for certain how much weight a tweeted link carries with it in the search algorithm, there is more than enough evidence to suggest that social signals due influence your organic search presence in one way or another.
And in the wake of the Google Penguin updates is link building on the way out?
Here’s what Julie Joyce of Link Fish Media had to say,
“I don’t see any evidence that suggests that a tweeted link counts as much as an actual text link. I’d prefer a text link but I’d accept a tweet though, because I do think that good social signals can raise a site up in the rankings even if it’s temporary, and the traffic is good.
“I imagine you can get better traffic from a good tweet than you can by many links on sites that no one goes to. I do definitely think that more social activity can make up for less link building, absolutely.
“I think it has to be done well though. You can’t just decide that tweeting a post once is as good as building links to that post through some other method. If you’re going to try and have the same effect as links would give you, you have to work harder. Tweet it more than once, a few days later, and tweet it to influencers who can retweet it. Tweet it a month later. That’s all assuming that you have something tweetable of course.
“If you don’t have anything to say, I don’t think social is the magic bullet.”
I came across this great blog post that quoted a lot of SEO experts that we’ve interviewed here on the Brick Marketing blog including Eric Ward, Eric Enge, and Ian Lurie that discussed tweeted links vs. regular links.
Some experts said that regular links will still be just as powerful in the future as they are now, albeit the algorithm will be more influenced by social signals, while others said that social shares will eventually usurp links as a better way to assess relevancy and authority.
This is a classic example of why site owners shouldn’t think it’s SEO OR social media. Rather, a strong inbound marketing campaign needs to include SEO AND social media.
Even the top SEO experts can’t say for sure where SEO and online authority is heading in the next few years so the best course of action is to do whatever you can to set yourself up for success no matter what.
We know that social authority is having some kind of impact on SEO (even if we can’t definitely prove that more tweeted links or Facebook shares equals better rankings) but we also know that links are still very much the bread and butter of SEO. Even in the wake of Penguin links still count for something, it’s just that now the quality of those things is tantamount and not the quantity.