A study released by BrightEdge suggests that the majority of ‘big brands’ are failing to optimise their social media pages for SEO.

Around 70% of the 200 analysed brands’ social media pages (Facebook & Twitter) did not show in Google’s top 20 results for brand specific searches.

BrightEdge CEO, Jim Yu explained, “Brands today are pouring countless resources into social media channels—and are creating great content that will help them engage with consumers”

“Optimizing these for SEO purposes is a crucial way to drive exposure. Brands may be missing critical customer connection points if consumers can’t easily discover their social media pages in search.”

A fair point, but perhaps a little short-sighted.

Yes, visibility is important, as is great content and engagement. But as soon as you optimise social media pages for Google and not for people, you’ll find yourself in trouble.

It’s not how they find your Facebook or Twitter page that’s important, but what they find when they do.

Take Nike as an example. Do a brand search and you’ll be presented with nike.com, the Nike Store, Nike Plus and  Nike’s Wikipedia page amongst others. No sign of Facebook or Twitter.

But does this really matter?

Click on any of the top results and it won’t take long for you to find a link to any one of their social media pages;

Capture

Clearly Nike does have a social media presence and the option to follow them is right there in-front of you.

So what do you get if you search ‘nike facebook’? – the obvious query if you’re looking for Nike’s Facebook page.

Exactly what you’d expect, and more;

nike facebook

These, in our opinion, are the results that count. Nike’s Facebook pages presented to you as a direct response to your query.

Social media pages are important, but more important that the brand’s websites? or blog? or news?

Optimise for people, not the search engines.