Social Media Vs. SEO( Search Engine optimization)

 The Internet marketing professionals are so much caught up in the social-web hype that a question in the digital marketing circles makes frequent rounds:  Is social-web an emerging alternative to SEO (Search Engine Optimization) endeavors?  In other words, as a potent digital marketing strategy can the social web platforms be viewed as a viable substitute for the search engines ?
Social web has spread its tentacles around all aspects of life. In Facebook, per the current statistics in 2011, the count of active users exceeded 800 million. Interestingly, on any day more than fifty percent of the active users log in to Facebook, and on the average each one has about 130 friends. Facebook is a very busy hub of multiple activities – people interact and interface with about 900 million objects including Facebook pages, groups, events and community pages. Those who are photo-lovers, on an average, upload more than 250 million images on Facebook. In terms of global reach, this all-engulfing platform covers 70 languages. Moreover, there is great news for the Americans – 75 percent of the users are from the USA.
In spite of all the pervasive and mammoth presence of Facebook, every cautious digital marketer is hesitant to position the social media over and above the organic search engines. In other words, particularly in the context of efficacy and impact, the viral force of social-web is not a substitute to SEO (Search Engine Optimization) mechanics. Let us take Facebook and Google as the befitting candidates for the comparison.
Of course, the common ground for both Facebook and Google search is ‘traffic’ – a huge ocean of traffic. But that common piece of attribute, which is just small cog in the wheel, cannot take it to that level of analysis to justify any possible comparison on their substitutability. The number of visitors, bounce rate,  pageviews only provide a quantitative dimension to it. For internet marketing, not only quantity, but also quality and sustainability matters. For the success of digital marketing you need a funnel of buyers traffic with a sustainable flow.

Think of your psychological motivation, mental state and expectation when you are going to a party, or planning to meet a friend. Is this, in any way similar to your psychological state and expectation or motivation, when you are on a shopping spree? They are fundamentally and organically different and dissimilar. In the first place you are putting on a social hat, and the latter you have a shopper’s hat. While you are browsing facebook, you are a social animal driven by a connective gregariousness. But when you are searching on internet using myriad keywords, basically you are on a mission – a determined mission to either buy some stuff or gather some specific information. The traffic that search engines tap on are very focused, bound by specific objectives, and driven by some need and want. In other words, the search engines feed a stream of traffic that mostly comes with shopping bags.
Though there is a visible dichotomy between the search engine traffic and social media visitors, both complement each other. For success in internet marketing, one needs to harness both in suitable measure to expect some magical result. The market is fiercely competitive; you cannot just leave one world and and embrace the other. You need to be blessed by both of them.