Thursday, January 12, 2012

What is Social Bookmarking & How Did Reddit Gets 2 Billion Impressions in December?

Reddit Gets 2 Billion Impressions in December, Leaving Digg in the Dust

Social bookmarking is an important and powerful part of SEO and your company should be doing it. The big sites in social bookmarking include Reddit, Digg, StumbleUpon and Delicious as well as scores of other sites. As the headline suggests, these are powerful websites with substantial traffic and SEO influence, so your company needs to be in the social bookmarking game. These are free websites so you can sign-up for as many of them as you desire and for SEO purpopses, the more, the better.

So what is social bookmarking? Just like you save bookmarks (also called favorites) on your own computer, social bookmarking is all about 'virtually' bookmarking web pages online on these popular websites. Because these virtual bookmarks are online and shared publicly, that's where the "social" part comes in. These sites allow others to 'favorite' or endorse your bookmarks if they like the article you've bookmarked. People might also 'follow' you so they're automatically updated on new bookmarks that you add. Also, if many people have virtually bookmarked the same web page, then that page and it's booGraphic from Onlywire.comkmark will rank higher within these social bookmarking websites and on search engines.

So how does it help SEO? As the article suggests, with just one of those social bookmarking sites, Reddit.com, getting 2 billion page views in one month, that represents a lot of traffic and potential clicking through to the bookmarked web pages. And the search engines like Google consider these social bookmarking sites to be high quality and very relevant, because it is real people making real endorsements of particular web pages by bookmarking them. So Google views those bookmarked links with high value, thus boosting the search engine rank of any particular bookmarked web page.

There are lots of social bookmarking tools available. Some are downloadable software that you have to install on your computer. Some are online SaaS (Software as a Service) applications.  Ping.fm is a free online bookmarking service where you can simultaneously bookmark a web page on dozens of social bookmarking websites. Of course, you'll need to have accounts with each particular social bookmarking website and then enter those credentials into Ping.fm. But once you set it all up, you're ready to roll. Enter a webpage into Ping.fm once, and then it automatically and simultaneously shoots out to dozens of your social bookmarking accounts.

Another good tool is OnlyWire. It is a hybrid system that is part virtual and part software download. It also shoots out your bookmarks to your social bookmarking accounts automatically and simultaneously. Onlywire has a small monthly fee. Onlywire and Ping.fm each reach a large number of different bookmarking sites. But there is some overlap, so you have to be careful to not duplicate accounts on both services. Other online bookmarking tools include Social Poster and Social Marker.

There are also many downloadable software packages for social bookmarking. One well known option is BookMarking Demon. Another is Social Bot and the company behind SocialBot has many other related software options. Downloadable social bookmarking software works the same way as its online bretheren. The primary difference is that with downloadable software, you pay only once instead of having a monthly fee like some of the online versions.

One other very important note about social bookmarking websites (Reddit, Delicious, StumpleUpon, Digg) is that you shouldn't only bookmark your own web pages. You also regularly bookmark other interesting sites, articles and blog posts that you find. This won't hurt your SEO at all and it will boost your credibility on the bookmarking websites. Basically, the bookmarking sites don't want self-promoters. They want members who will add significant value and variety from sites beyond their own. So bookmark other sites as much as you bookmark your own website pages and blog entries. And yes, you should always bookmark your blog posts so that you get lots of backlinks from many sites back to those posts.

But regardless of which method(s) you use for social bookmarking, the simple point is that you need to do it. And you need to do it on a steady and continual basis rather than just one big blast when you first sign-up. And if you can't do it on your own, then you need to find a partner company, like BaerMarketingNetwork.com that can set-up an entire semi-automated system and/or can do it for you.

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by Brian Baer, BaerMarketingNetwork.com
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