Facebook’s Graph search is changing the way people find goods and services online, adding an alternative to the major search engines.
Since the service is still new, it can be hard for businesses to pinpoint the methods and practices used for optimization. For search marketers, this is commonly known as SEO (search engine optimization), but GSO (Graph Search Optimization) isn’t as widely understood.
By better understanding how to optimize for Graph Search, you can get a leg up on the competition.
Graph Search will rank content based on specific user-driven metrics, so these are the ones you should focus on. With The Facebook Insight Report from Simply Measured, you get access to user-specific analysis that can provide the tools for optimizing your Graph Search rankings.
Here are five key metrics to focus on while ramping up your GSO.
1. People Talking About This (PTAT):
People Talking About This – or PTAT – has created some confusion among Facebook marketers. PTAT is a sum total of users creating stories about your page, including Likes, Shares, Mentions, Comments, and several other ways for your page to show up in a newsfeed. PTAT is a key factor in the way Graph Search will rank content. The more interaction, engagement, and exposure your page and content gets, the more likely it is to show up in a search result.
2. Engagement On Outbound Content:
Hand-in-hand with PTAT is the engagement on your outbound content, or content that you’ve created on your page. Since the goal with Graph Search will be to have your brand generated page, posts and comments show up at the top, this is an important metric to focus on. Facebook bases relevance on a number of factors, one of which is the number of “likes” your content has gotten from the searcher’s network of friends (or even, friends of friends, as a secondary level). Focus on content, stories, and comments that are garnering the most likes and overall engagement.
3. Page Fan Demographic Profile:
Your demographic metrics give you valuable insight into the type of users interacting with your brand. Cater to your market. If you’re a brand with more than one location, claim brand pages for each. Graph Search favors localized content. If your page caters to a specific location or type of clientele, your profile should be rich with content and keywords that promote this. Optimize your “About” tab to reflect this.
4. Stories On User Generated Content:
Graph Search is based on a user’s connections to friends. Stories generated by users is a very important metric in this regard. Your page and content should be sharable, and users should have an incentive to promote your brand on their own. Contests and promotions that encourage mentions of your page are a good way to gain relevance in graph searches among their connections.
5. Top Keywords From Comments:
Focusing on the keywords present in comments can provide two different sets of benefits. For one, you can cater content to the conversations people are having, and drive search relevance through engaging more thoroughly with your active audience. Secondly, if the conversations aren’t creating the content you’d like to see to drive more traffic to your page, you can focus a campaign on steering conversations back toward product or service specific topics that will help your GSO ranking.
To dig into your own Facebook Insight Metrics, sign up for a free Trial of Simply Measured’s full suite of social analytics, and for more Facebook insight, become a fan of our Facebook fan page. While you’re there, be sure to comment about software, Excel features and social media analytics…you know…for our GSO.