Social media now driving more traffic than search. Are you ready?

According to all of the recent marketing data, social media has now surpassed search engines as the number one driver of traffic to websites. So what does this mean for your SEO and social media marketing strategies going in to the new year?

The first thing to take note of is recent research published by Montate, a top marketing research firm, that reports that social media is, indeed, driving the traffic, but it lags far behind with regard to conversions. The report sites that social media has a conversion rate of only a mere 0.71% while the conversion champ remains email with a 3.19% and search engines with a conversion rate of 1.95%. So, social media is driving the traffic but woefully trailing in conversions.

How to fix that?

One way is through the proven method of continuous exposure. The more someone sees your brand, the more aware of it they are and, consequently, the better they feel about it. The more they trust and like it. Buzzsumo once researched over 100 million articles and discovered that content that was shared through social media networks could elevate a brand’s engagement by almost 700%.

One social media marketing strategy you will need to deploy in the coming year is to use those social media leads as email leads. Use email’s high conversion rate to boost your social media engagement and traffic conversions. Market research stats from last year’s holiday shopping showed that social media made up 1.6% of all sales on Black Friday while email accounted for over 25% of it.

Try and segment your email traffic by what they are interested in, why they have come to the site. Also, you must give social media traffic a reason to come to the site and to sign up for your email. Special coupons and discounts have been proven incentives for quite some time.

In addition, so many social media sites have so many options with regard to targeting markets yet it seems that most small businesses are not taking advantage of that. Know who your customers are and where your customers are. By refining your social media targets, you will end up with more traffic, more conversions and a much stronger rate of return on your social media marketing investment.

-Written by Kevin Sawyer