The heydays of organic search are over. While it continues to send large amounts of steady traffic to your site, there is a new elephant in the room and it’s called social media. Referrals from the top 5 social media platforms grew by an extraordinary People also look for products and services that their friends recommend. This means a large percentage of people who come to your site from social networks actually want to know more about your products or services. This is targeted traffic, a.k.a great leads! Social media is having a huge impact on how businesses attract customers. It is rewriting the rules of the game, so to speak. The question is – Are you optimizing the use of social media for drawing referrals to your website? One of the ways you can do this is by leveraging the immense potential of social login and sharing. Implement Social Login and know your users Apart from reducing the barriers to registration on your site by allowing users to login with their existing social accounts, social login also delivers a treasure trove of social data that helps you offer a personalized user experience. Businesses get an in-depth understanding of their users by accessing the profile data they have on their social accounts. This data not only includes demographic information such as age, and gender, but also deeper information like email address, interests, marital status, etc. This data helps you target your customers and improve the engagement quotient of your site. Social login helps you capture numerous data points, meaning you can easily capture information that you think is the most relevant for your needs. And this isn’t just a lot of data, it is relevant social data. Allow your users to social share Word-of-mouth marketing is huge and some of the best referral traffic comes from social sharing; make it easy for your website/mobile users to share articles, products or any other content. Having a social sharing widget will encourage users to share this content with their friends and followers. Social sharing is not only about making it easier for users to share, but also getting the most value out of each share. Your posts are being displayed differently on Facebook, Twitter, Google+, and LinkedIn so ensure that you are mindful of that. Optimize each post by getting images, meta information, tags and URLs right. What you are doing is telling each social platform exactly how your post – and your call-to-action – must be displayed. You need to make the appearance of the post as appealing as possible to encourage people to click on it and share. Permission Based Sharing One of the better ways of initiating user interaction and referral traffic is by posting on their timelines or streaming user activity on your website back to the users profile. This helps you create a social media type experience on your site. So, if a user logs in with his Facebook and he is checking out certain products on your site, you can post his product preferences on his Facebook wall. You have a chance to share content that you believe will help you get the kind of social media referrals you need. But there’s a caveat: have you solicited the user’s permission before you shared content on a social network on the user’s behalf? I know I, as a large social media user, would be very unimpressed if I had not given permission and someone posted on my behalf. Therefore, you have to build trust with your users first and then incentivize them for sharing such content such as get 5% discount on next purchase. Allow users to be the final judge of what they want to share on their networks. This transparency builds trust and credibility – two key drivers of social media referrals. Acquire Users through Social Invite (Referrals) Make it a point to attract the right people to your site. The best followers are those who become your brand ambassadors. Ask your users to invite friends from all their social networks such as Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn and email providers like Gmail and Yahoo with a Social Invite (a key feature of a social login provider like LoginRadius). You can think of rewards that will encourage users to invite their friends and followers to your website. What you are essentially doing is converting them into your brand ambassadors. Each user is a potential brand ambassador; all you need to do is encourage them through the right incentives. How you do that is your call. Conclusion You can attract more social media referrals to your site if you are able to understand your target users’ better, place shareable content in front of them, and improve the social media experience on your site. A social suite brings all these benefits to the table and acts like your one stop social solution for attracting social media referrals. But make sure you complement this with great content, relevant, useful and actionable content that makes people want to share. Images: “Woman thinking about social media/ Shutterstock.com“ __________________________________________________________________________________ Connect with Tweak Your Biz: Would you like to write for Tweak Your Biz? Tweak Your Biz is an international, business advice community and online publication. Today it is read by over 140,000 business people each month (unique visitors, Google Analytics, December, 2013). See our review of 2013 for more information. An outstanding title can increase tweets, Facebook Likes, and visitor traffic by 50% or more. Generate great titles for your articles and blog posts with the Tweak Your Biz Title Generator.