Do Social Media Backlinks Work For SEO?


It’s hard to believe, but some people are still using social bookmarking for backlinks. This is the equivalent to using MySpace in 2020. It’s not going to help your site, and could even do more harm than good. 

If you’ve already built social bookmark links or you’re thinking about doing it, I’m going to teach you some of the far superior link building alternatives, so that you can grow your site, boost your rankings, and drive more traffic with link building. 

What Is Social Bookmarking?

When it comes to link building, social bookmarking essentially refers to getting a backlink from a social media site. The theory behind this is that because social media sites carry a lot of authority, if you get a link from them, it will boost your rankings.

People use websites such as Reddit, Twitter, and Dribbble to backlink to their own websites. But, this is a very outdated strategy. Google considers this to be a form of spamming, and social bookmarking definitely won’t help your site rank

Google’s algorithm is smart enough to see if you’re getting backlinks from social media sites and using social bookmarking as a link building strategy. 

The algorithm might mark the links and your site as spam, and you could even get a penalty that will cause your rankings to slip down even further. So, you have to be very careful about using social bookmarking. 

How Does It Impact Your Ranking?

It is important to remember that social bookmarking does not have a positive impact on your rankings or benefit your SEO.

Because Google’s algorithm can recognize social bookmarking sites and considers them to be low quality, they will ignore those links. Anyone can get these links, which tells Google that you have no no editorial process in place. 

These backlinks don’t form a natural part of your backlinks profile, and they are not going to help boost your rankings. There are much more effective strategies you can use, which I will talk about further in this article. 

Usually these social media sites are not relevant to your niche. If you’re getting a backlink from Twitter and you have a website about dogs, that’s not a relevant site. Because it’s not a relevant backlink, it’s not going to pass any authority. 

Most of these links are also nofollow, which means that there’s a nofollow tag in the link. This indicates to search engine crawlers that the link isn’t trustworthy, and not to pass on any authority.

If you have a lot of nofollow links, it doesn’t help you in terms of boosting your ranking on Google.

However, if you have a relevant social media profile that you regularly post on, that has a strong following, that signals to Google that the site has authority.

If you have experimented with social bookmarking links, or you’re just not sure what the best types of links are, a good rule of thumb is that if there’s no editorial process in place to add to your backlinks, then it is not valuable for your site.

It’s not going to help your rankings. Google is going to identify it as spam or ignore it completely. 

It is really important to focus on building a backlink profile that looks natural. This indicates authority and trust. If you look at any of the big sites that are getting traffic, they always have a natural backlink profile because they’re producing great content. 

If you have great content, then you’re always going to attract links. Regardless of whether you do outreach or get them naturally. 

So, what is the best linking strategy to use? I recommend getting editorial links to your site using the Skyscraper Technique. This will help you to work out how your competitors are getting backlinks and where they are getting them from.  

You can then create a better piece of content than your competitors, contact the sites that are linking to them and say, “Hey, I know you’re linked to Maybe you want to link to me too. Here’s my content. What do you think?” This is a great way to get editorial links from website owners. 

The best part is that you’ll be getting links because your content is good, not because you’re spamming a lot of social media bookmarking sites. This is a much more powerful and effective way to get links. 

Plus, the links that you get when using the Skyscraper Technique are dofollow. When your links are dofollow they pass authority, trust, and credibility to your site. 

By using this approach you will eventually see a big improvement in your website authority and your rankings on Google. 

I also want to mention that social media can still play a powerful part in your linking and SEO strategies.

If you have a large following on social media, such as an Instagram page with 20,000 followers, it’s a great indicator of trust, authority, and credibility to your site. 

Grow Your Following

It is important to differentiate between building a social media following that can boost your SEO and trying to build an unnatural following by social bookmarking with automated software. The former will grow your audience, the latter will not. 

So, if you’re going to use social media for SEO, then focus on growing your following and building a real audience.

Engagement metrics such as likes, comments, and followers are powerful for SEO because they indicate trust. This will grow your brand and build an audience that will follow your content.