Editor’s Note: Optimizing your nonprofit’s Facebook Page and other social media presence is critical. So for that reason, I’m happy to have Gisele Navarro Mendez guest blogging here again! This week, she’ll show you how to individually optimize your nonprofit’s Facebook Page, Twitter account, and Google+ presence. Today, we’ll focus on just Facebook, but check back tomorrow and Thursday (at the same time) for Twitter and Google+ SEO tips!
If you’ve been following Mightycause’s blog for long enough, you probably know by now that social media can do wonders for your nonprofit. In addition to opening doors to social interaction and relationship building, your social media presence is also helping search engines identify authority, trust, relevance and popularity associated to your organization.
According to a June 2012 study from Searchmetrics, “social signals from Facebook, Twitter and Google+ are frequently associated with good rankings in Google’s index.” This means that the strength of your online presence, the number of social shares and the quality of your interactions correlate well with achieving high rankings and earning links, while directing traffic on their own.
Imagine how much more you could achieve by having your social networking profiles ranking on the search results with your main keywords! Follow these simple steps and optimize your nonprofit’s Facebook Page, Twitter profile and Google+ Page for SEO:
1. Choose the name of your Facebook Page wisely
Try not to use long phrases filled with keywords because you will appear too spammy, and you don’t want to be portrayed as an untrustworthy organization. It’s advisable to name your Page after your nonprofit, ensuring that people will be able to find you with little-to-no confusion.
>> Pro Tip: After your fan page has 25 Likes, Facebook will grant you a unique URL (or “vanity URL”). Your vanity URL will usually be something like “facebook.com/YourNonprofitName” and you’ll be able to configure it by visiting http://www.facebook.com/username.
2. Make the best out of your About section
The first 165 characters or so will be shown at the top of your Facebook Page, so ensure that the description is short, punchy and keyword-rich. Make sure you’re also including your website URL!
3. Link your website and existing social profiles to your Facebook Page
You probably have a Facebook button or a badge connecting your site to your Facebook, but in terms of SEO the best way in which you can integrate your nonprofit’s website with Facebook is by linking to Facebook with the brand name as the anchor text. Follow this example:
<a href= “http://www.facebook.com/MightycauseGiving” target=”_blank” >Mightycause Giving on Facebook</a>
>> Pro Tip: Don’t forget to include a link to your Page from your other social profiles and even as part of your BIO when guest blogging on other blogs. Remember that the more inbound links pointing to your Facebook Page, the more authoritative your Page becomes, meaning that you will be ranked higher in search engine results.
4. Use your keywords wisely
If you want your Facebook Page to rank within search results along with your website, your content must include your target keywords. Of course, this doesn’t mean you need to start stuffing your updates with search terms you want to rank with!
>> Pro Tip: Just keep in mind that the message you include when sharing an image, a video or a link, will serve the meta description. So, take advantage of this space, especially the first 155 characters, as they will be appear on search engine results!
5. Don’t forget to optimize your Facebook Page for local searches
To optimize your Page for local searches, you will need to include your address, city, state, and zip. In addition to this, and as Nathan Latka mentioned on this post, “Google places higher importance on pages with specific information like your business’s phone number and address.”
6. Drive Facebook Likes and Shares
Embed the “Like” icon on relevant pages of your site, landing pages, email marketing campaigns, your blog and press releases. Make it easier for your visitors to share the content on your site by adding a Share button to blog posts, event invitations and landing pages.
>> Pro Tip: Learn more about Facebook integration by reading the guide to SEO for Facebook developed by Distilled.