How can your business benefit from social bookmarking sites?
We all depend on the Internet – in one way or another: for information, research, business, education and so many other reasons. We have our favorite sites, blogs, and authors – so we all know that the Bookmarks menu in our browser (no matter which one we use) is not enough for all our interests. And what happens when we change our computer – what was the name of that blog with the great cooking recipes again? This inconvenience is the major reason for the existence of social bookmarking sites.
What is social bookmarking?
Social bookmarking tools let users store links to their favorite web destinations in one place which they can access from any computer on the internet. It’s a method for internet users to organize, manage, store and search for bookmarks of resources online. Users can tag their links to help them remember why they’ve saved the links and how they can use them in the future. At the same time, social bookmarking has a social element (not surprising, right?) – users can share their bookmarks with friends and also search through other user’s favorite links to discover new content that they’re interested in. All this makes social bookmarking sites very helpful and addictive, which, of course, drives a lot of internet users to them.
For your individual use, those services make great sense – you can store and filter your online information and interests all in one place. Some tools also help users to more easily understand which internet content is relevant to them and their interests. But social bookmarking sites are really useful for businesses, too. They can help you drive traffic to your website or blog, build brand awareness, provide another tool in your PR strategy and online media presence, etc. Your business can emerge as a reliable resource for information in your field. Another use of social bookmarks is as individual as business. If you’ve run a PR campaign or any other online marketing campaign and you want to research how many tweets or blog posts there are on the internet about it, you can store the information in your bookmarks. After a couple of months you can go back and refer to this information, because it’s all gathered in one place.
Increase the traffic to your site with social bookmarking
When we’re talking about online marketing, first of all we’re talking about generating traffic. The more traffic you have to your website, the higher the chance of turning website visitors into real customers. So you have to use every opportunity for traffic generation, and social bookmarking is great for this purpose. Exactly how much your traffic will increase from social bookmarking websites depends on two main factors – how well you use social bookmarking tools and how many users in your country also use those tools (it varies from country to country). So first of all, do your research to determine which tools your target audience uses and how they use them, and then start your business social bookmarking.
Every time you add a bookmark to one of your pages in a social bookmarking site you create a backlink which helps you and your website gain more visibility. Thanks to social bookmarking tools your website will be indexed by search engines, which will result in higher page ranks and your page will show up in relevant user’s searches. The indexation is guaranteed when you’re using some of the most popular tools – and all this is completely free. The investment in social bookmarking sites will cost you only your time – no money! All tools are free to use.
Social bookmarking will not only gain you traffic – it’ll be qualitative traffic. Users who search for information that you have will see it and go to your site, which increases the possibility that they’ll become your customers. A wide range of people will be exposed to your business website and you can gain a lot of new clients. Social bookmarking tools track the users that access your links. You can use this information to get a better understanding of your audience and to find out if you’re reaching your target market.
How to start social bookmarking?
- Register at some of the most popular social bookmarking sites (you can read a short review in Make your own online business library (part 2)). Research the audience – your target users have to use the same site, otherwise your efforts will be in vain. Complete your company profile and link to your website.
- Download different tools and buttons to add to your site – so users can utilize them.
- Research the competition – look at your competitors and the way that they’re using social bookmarking sites. It may give you some ideas for your profile.
- Build your network by sharing your content and other content relevant to your industry. Create a balance between your “advertisements” and content created by others. Be careful about your submissions in social bookmarking sites – they must be authentic. Otherwise they’ll appear to be spam and you won’t achieve anything. Write catchy titles and don’t push users to your website – in fact, any posting rules that you know about for social media are relevant for social bookmarking, too. Use images and videos to make a simple and easy to understand landing page.
- Follow users, and some of them will follow you back – this will enlarge your network.
- Submit links, write comments and reviews, rate other stories – the more active you are, the more trusted you’ll become, the more traffic you’ll get.
- Make sure that every link that you bookmark is optimized for keywords. Include keywords in your title, in your tags and descriptions – in fact, you’re creating backlinks to improve your page ranking, so maximize the effect.
On social networks like Facebook the content sometimes has a secondary role – but in social bookmarking sites it is the content that people are searching for. That’s why, when done properly, social bookmarking can be an efficient tool to drive traffic to your website. Social bookmarking is easy and cost-effective, so don’t miss the opportunity to benefit from it. Which social bookmarking sites should you choose for your business? Read some short reviews of the most popular tools in: Make your own online business library (part 2).