Matt Cutts, today published a video explaining why Google does not care about Facebook OR Twitter Social Signal in his ranking algorithm, in other words, Google does not pay any attention to social signals, like the amount of Twitter followers or likes on Facebook. The question asked was like
Are Facebook and Twitter signals part of the ranking algorithm? How much do they matter?
However, Matt has not clearly answered the question and his main answer was focused on followers or likes while the answer was about the entire signal from social media. Does it mean this is being done just to promote Google+, and stop people from Facebook and Twitter, surely that remains a big question always? The other hint which Matt gave about the use of identity & influence of the person posting the content and where he is posting, Matt said this will be defining how contents are trusted in the long run and ranked. So does it mean Google is taking steps towards using Google plus identity as part of the ranking algorithm? We will be discussing all these questions.
Why Google Does Not Count Facebook & Twitter as Ranking Factors?
Does it count OR not, still doubted but Matt has cleared that Google doesn’t use Twitter or Facebook social signals to rank pages, Matt his own reasons for the same:
- Fear of Data Crawling Blocking from Social Platforms: Maybe the biggest reason which Matt has expressed Google’s inability or reliability on the crawling of data from these social networks. As we all know previously also Matt mentioned that the Google bot was blocked for one month from crawling data from these networks. So how much does Google trust these in terms of blocking free access to Data?
- Personal or Private Data Display Which May be Time Sensitive: Matt has given another reason saying that Google does not want to display data that may be time sensitive OR which may be private in search results, sometimes data may be associated with a timeline or private enough which owners of those profiles do not want to be displayed.
- Limitations on Access of Social Signals: Matt also said that even if Google reaches your profile, sometimes Google is not able to crawl those as due to “Nofollow” of Link or If the contents are not as Public access or Profile is blocked from public viewing.
Why Some Content with More Social Signals Ranks High
Matt again repeated that great contents rank well because they are useful content for the readers, and as a result, they go viral and get a lot of shares and tweets, etc. These are ranked because of the quality of content and not because of a number of social sharing.
Identity as part of the Ranking Algorithm
Matt also said that maybe in the future he expects Google to identify the person writing the contents, and where he is writing and give importance accordingly based on the influence of that individual. For now, Google will be crawling the web as it is.
Importance of Google+ (To determine source and authority of identity)
As Matt provides more hints about the use and importance of identity over the next years, so we expect Google will be clearly heading towards using Google+ identity as part of the ranking algorithm OR all this is being done just to promote Google+?
Practically, if we study the Google+ Social Network, it takes Google+ circles or followers and shows in search as well which is hard to get by gaming the network like any other social network where people can buy likes or followers, but not in Google+
Another thing to mention is that authorship is getting more and more important because Google+ Authors will be a strong signal when it will be a question of information/contents based on identity.