Now that we are getting better at attracting and using social media traffic and that we clearer understand that we may not depend on Google traffic only, on-page social media optimization is something we need to pay more attention to.
Here are two easy (yes, easy but I bet you haven’t thought of those yet!) tricks to make your pages social-media-friendlier by making the most of popular hashtags:
1. Hashtags in <Title> Tag: Twitter Optimization
Think about that: whether your reader is using your Tweet button or not, in most cases <title> of the page will be imported into a Tweet. You cannot always be on top of Twitter trending topics and you can’t always make it to the popular hashtags results. What you can do is get your readers help you! Thus you can see some surprising results by *helping* people tweet your content into popular Twitter hashtag stream!
Like I mentioned earlier when talking about optimizing your title tags for Twitter, you use hashtags to brand important sections of your site. For example, instead of “SEOmoz QA”, this could be
@SEOmoz #QA (mind how popular this hashtag is!)
Thus, instead of tweeting “Using Brand Name in Page Titles | SEOmoz QA bit/lyXXX”, people would be promoted to use a more useful format:
This could ensure SEOmoz’s continuous presence in #qa hashtag search results on Twitter.
Using specific hashtags in the title tags also makes perfect sense. Imagine the official event hashtag making it to every tweet of the event announcement article. According to Dir Local, local hashtags increase Twitter exposure and article engagement.
Conclusion: Research which hashtags are being used by your niche influencers and journalists and optimize your title tags for them to make sure you often appear in search results (and you are not the only one who gets you there).
2. Hashtags in Image Anchor Text: Twitter + Pinterest Optimization
Another important part of your website to optimize for hashtags is an image anchor text.
Many people don’t realize that the alt text is what gets imported into the Pin description / comment field when people are using the official “Pin it” bookmarklet. So by including a couple of important hashtags in the <alt=> part of the image, you make sure they get both:
1. In a Pinterest description
2. In a Tweet that usually follows the Pin:
(Mind that those tweets linking to the Pin increase your content Pinterest visibility as well)
Note: Before you go play with Pinterest hashtags, don’t get confused. The new social media site “over-complicate” the ranking system a bit:
Whereas on Twitter hashtags are chronologically organized, Pinterest “tags” are sorted by perceived relevance. Therefore, hashtagged photos with the most “likes, repins, comments etc.” will show up at the top of the search page.
Conclusion: For better Pinterest visibility make sure to always include some relevant hashtags in your image anchor text. No need to overuse though. One hashtag is usually enough.
Are you utilizing hashtags for on-page optimization? Please share your tricks!