I have been asked this a lot and I thought it was time to share my thoughts. Before I do, let me present to you what Matt Cutts says about Social Media signals and if they play a role. Well you guessed it, the answer is no. At least from what he says…..
Now let’s put yourselves in his shoes, do you really want to reveal the true works of SEO and any new signals/changes that may help? Of course not! They will spam the hell out of it and make it useless like guest blogging has become over the years.
If you want to be the popular search engine, you want to show something we all know is part of SEO, great content. Well what is considered great content? Content that people share and discuss about. Google knows from referall sources where traffic comes from. Even with Share This tools we can see what is or isn’t popular. So for those who think otherwise, that’s fine. I mean Matt Cutts did say it didn’t play a role.
Some interesting findings in my history of this theory was I took two pages with about the same idea and content. I sent one with traffic from referral sources and tactics with Reddit, sharing all my social media channels etc. And the other I just left as is. After about a few days I was able to determine my more popular page was indexed quicker, higher positioned and actually started getting natural comments and shares. Even my rich snippets of authorship were showing.
For the other content, it was indexed after two days after, no little to any traffic. No rich snippets, and couldn’t be found in the top 10 pages of rankings. So to just say social media doesn’t affect SEO, I can’t say for certain that is true.
There is however a part in Matt's video that explains in the future he expects Google to be able to better identify who is writing the content and where and place a more importance based on the influence an individual may have. So perhaps Klout score may be some thing to consider as a good source of where you stand.