Can Influencer Marketing Improve Your SEO?

  ●   June 25, 2024 | SEO, Social Media
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June 25, 2024 | SEO, Social Media

We explore the impact of influencer marketing on SEO to see if you can reap the same benefits as collaborating with influencers on social media.

You’re probably already aware of the countless benefits of influencer marketing in the realm of social media. In fact, you’ve probably witnessed this first-hand, scrolling through your feed and seeing nothing but Love Island stars advertising your favourite products. A HubSpot report found that 25% of marketers used influencers to market their products or services in 2023.

It is reported that 69% of consumers trust influencer recommendations over information that comes from friends and family, or even the brand itself. Moreover, 81% of consumers say that seeing social media posts from influencers works at piquing their interest in a product or service.

But the question is: can influencer marketing have the same positive impact for your SEO?

Is influencer marketing beneficial for SEO?

In short, yes. Influencer marketing can be beneficial both on and off-site, meaning that it can help improve your SEO efforts. Used effectively, influencer marketing can improve site engagement metrics, drive quality traffic, build backlinks, boost rankings in the search engine results pages (SERPs), and improve customer trust.

7 Benefits of influencer marketing for SEO

While more commonly associated with social media, influencer marketing has many benefits for SEO, such as:

1. Backlinks and authority-building

A backlink is an online link that points from another website to your website. Digital PR and blogger outreach are some of the best ways to earn backlinks organically, through creating newsworthy content that journalists will cover in their online publications. These backlinks serve as a vote of confidence in the eyes of Google and will help improve your chances of ranking highly in the SERPs.

However, this doesn’t just work with journalists. Many influencers have an online presence beyond social media, such as their own blogs or websites.

This means you can nurture relationships with influencers in your industry and engage in content collaborations to earn organic backlinks.

Learn more about the importance of backlinks and Digital PR for SEO.

2. Increase website traffic

When influencers share your content and link to your website from their social media accounts or on-site, you’re likely to receive referral traffic from engaged audiences. Higher traffic signals search engines that your site is valuable and relevant, potentially improving your rankings.

3. Social signals

While not a direct ranking factor, engagement on social media (such as shares, likes, and comments) can indirectly impact your SEO. High social engagement can lead to more organic searches and interactions with your website, which can positively influence search engine algorithms.

4. Expand content reach

Influencers can help amplify your content, enabling it to reach a broader audience. This exposure can result in more people sharing your content online and via social channels, further increasing its reach and the likelihood of acquiring more backlinks and traffic.

5. Boost brand awareness

Influencer marketing increases brand visibility and awareness, at the top of the marketing funnel. When more people know about your brand, they are more likely to search for it, leading to an increase in branded searches. Branded searches can positively impact your SEO as they indicate to search engines that your brand is authoritative and trusted.

6. Improve engagement metrics

Engagement metrics such as time spent on page, bounce rate, and click-through rates can improve when influencers drive targeted traffic to your site. When picking an influencer, go for someone who is relevant to your brand, shares similar values, and whose audience is likely to be interested in what you have to offer. People who are actually interested are likely to stay on your site for longer. Better engagement metrics can signal to search engines that your content is relevant and valuable, potentially boosting your rankings.

7. Content quality and E-E-A-T

Similar to social signals, E-E-A-T is not a direct ranking factor, however, is still important if you want your content to rank highly in the SERPs. E-E-A-T is an acronym created by Google, which stands for Experience, Expertise, Authoritativeness, and Trustworthiness. Demonstrating these four qualities will ensure that you’re fulfilling Google’s definition of high-quality and relevant content. So, how do influencers come into this?

Well, the first E stands for experience, so Google wants to know that your content is based on first-hand experience. So, you could send out your product or let the influencer try your service to understand their personal experience and include this within your content. 

The second E, for expertise, determines the level of expertise the writer has on the topic. For example, if you’re writing a blog that gives veterinarian advice, you could collaborate with a vet influencer to get their take on the subject.

A is for Authoritativeness and has a lot to do with the quantity and quality of inbound links going into your webpages, which is another reason link-building is so important. 

T, trustworthiness, is arguably the most significant of them all. When it comes to influencers, you must select those who are authentic. They should not give false reviews or make unsupported claims, and always disclose advertising relationships.

An example of how to work with influencers and bloggers for content success

Working alongside leading kombucha brand ‘Equinox Kombucha’, Semetrical organised numerous collaborations with leading influencers and industry specialists, including nutritionists James Hudson and Rosie Henderson, recipe creators Ginger Vegan and Martha de Lacey, Athletes Logan Nicol and Vicky Fleetwood, and Mixologist at the Clockwork Rose, James French. 

E-E-A-T is especially important for your-money-or-your-life (YMYL) content, which includes any content that can directly impact a user’s life – health included. As such, these expert partnerships were particularly important for the trustworthiness of blogs that discussed health-related topics, such as the health benefits of kombucha.

We created author bios for the new blog contributors and made sure to include reputable references throughout.

Overall, we achieved a 599% increase in monthly organic traffic, 314% increase in keywords ranking in positions 1-3. These successes lead to the win Best Integrated Campaign at EU Content Awards 2020, and we were also shortlisted for Best Low Budget Campaign at the UK Search Awards 2022.

How to choose influencers for your brand

To choose influencers for your brand, first define your goals and target audience. Look for influencers whose followers align with your demographic and are likely to be interested in your brand. Assess their engagement rates, authenticity, and content quality. Ensure their values and style match your brand’s image, and check their past collaborations for professionalism and effectiveness.

Remember that the following count is not everything. Relevance is far more crucial! Influencer marketing can take up a significant chunk of your budget so there’s no point paying for macro-influencers or celebrities with millions of followers, if their followers are unlikely to care for your brand. In most instances, a micro-influencer with a hyper-relevant audience and close-knit online community will be far more beneficial to you. Google loves relevance!

How to measure the impact of influencer marketing on SEO

Measuring the impact of influencer marketing on your SEO can be tricky and involves tracking various metrics to assess how the campaign influences your search engine rankings and online visibility. Here are key steps and metrics to consider:

1. Monitor backlinks

Use tools like Ahrefs, Moz, or SEMrush to monitor new backlinks from influencer content. Delve deep to assess the domain authority and relevance of the sites linking to you.

Remember to add UTM parameters to links shared by influencers to track the exact impact of their content on your site.

2. Analyse search rankings 

Use the same SEO tools to track your rankings for targeted keywords before and after the influencer campaign. Also, look closely at the volume of searches that include your brand name, which can increase due to higher brand awareness.

3. Keep and eye on website traffic

Use Google Analytics to track referral traffic coming from the influencer’s website or social media. Alternatively, look at the wider picture and compare website traffic before and after the campaign to identify any spikes or sustained increases.

4. Track social signals

Monitor engagement metrics on  influencer posts featuring your brand, such as likes, comments, and shares.

5. Measure conversion rates

Track conversions from the traffic driven by influencers. Depending on the stage of the funnel, you can then go on to calculate the return on investment by comparing the cost of the influencer campaign to the revenue generated from the conversions. Campaigns targeted more at the awareness level, at the top of the funnel, may not be easily attributed directly to revenue. Yet, that does not make it less important!

Is your website ready for an influx of referral traffic?

Before you invest significant time and money into influencer marketing, it’s crucial to ensure your site is well-optimised and provides a seamless user experience. There’s no point directing traffic to your site if users arrive, see no engaging content to educate them about your offering or guide them through the funnel, have a poor experience, and go elsewhere.

You’ll have a few things to think about, like the SEO fundamentals, site health, navigation, and analytics set up for attribution. And remember that considerations will vary depending on your brand. For example, for B2B, be prepared for a longer sales cycle. Make sure you’ve got all the assets you need for a smooth customer journey, such as blogs, whitepapers, reviews, and case studies. 

This preparation will maximise the return on your marketing investments and ensure 

you’re ready to capitalise on traffic to your site, for instance from influencer campaigns.

Ready to get your site into shape? Get in touch with our experts to discuss the best SEO strategies to achieve your digital ambitions!

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