Don’t Buy Fake Followers: The Importance of Organic Growth
Ninety-two percent of marketers find social media to be an effective strategy to increase SEO, and search engines, such as Google and Bing, look at the following these social media accounts have when determining SEO, according to Brafton. With each update, Google places more emphasis on the importance of organic growth and transparency. While buying followers and likes may have been a way to launch your business’s SEO and following in the past, Google now looks not at the number of followers, but at the habits of those followers to determine their legitimacy, according to Forbes.
One crucial aspect of your audience Google looks at is the location of your followers/fans. If you company is based in the Midwest, yet has majority of its followers are in India, Google reads that as a red flag. Most of these “pay for followers” programs use these vacant accounts located overseas, so while you may have added thousands of followers to your account, this means nothing to Google and your company loses its legitimacy in SEO rankings.
Another aspect of your followers and fans Google looks at is their sharing habits. These vacant accounts will not retweet, favorite or share posts, and Google knows this. Involved, interactive followers are what Google looks for when determining your company’s popularity legitimacy.
Google isn’t the only one looking for organic interactions from consumers, but review sites are also on high-alert for fake reviews attempting to boost a company’s ratings. These websites look at things like the review’s IP address and can determine if multiple reviews are sent from the same location, which send them a red flag and often, those companies will be penalized for those fake reviews.
This new crackdown on social media mirrors Google’s similar penalties to companies that used loopholes to increase their SEO– and these companies dropped off the search engine results after the update. The best way to avoid this is to generate an organic following due to the compelling, original, story-like content you publish that engages your followers. To find out more about how to create this content, read our past blogpost here.