Social Bookmarking for Beginners

February 16, 2009

Traditional bookmarking
Most Internet browsers come equipped with a user-friendly bookmarking tool that allows users to keep track of their most frequented websites without having to write down the different URLs.

The URLs are organized as lists under different user-defined categories, much like creating different folders for saving files. Users can keep adding URLs to their lists and they can delete URLs from the lists anytime.

Social bookmarking
Social bookmarking is patterned after the same concept of traditional bookmarking. Creating the list of URLs and organizing them still depend on individual users. However, the lists can be viewed by the public and the URLs can be followed by anyone granted access to the individual’s bookmarks.

Much like social networking websites, there are sites dedicated to creating a network of bookmarks that individuals can share with others who have the same interests. In fact, there are some websites that have already put together the best of social networking and bookmarking, like Facebook.

Here are some of the known social bookmarking websites:

• Digg
• Reddit
• Stumbleupon
• Newsvine

One of the most useful features of the best social bookmarking websites is tagging. Users have been acquainted with tagging when blogging started to become popular. Tagging allows users to assign keywords, also known as tags, to help others in their social bookmarking network find the URLs that they need from hundreds of bookmarked lists.

Social bookmarking and SEO
There are 2 ways to approach social bookmarking from a search engine marketing perspective:

1. Optimize to be bookmarked
The success of this method is heavily dependent on your website content. Do a little research and check out people’s social bookmarks. Find out which other websites your niche visits, and see how your content matches up to that of the other websites.

People bookmark websites that they find relevant and helpful. They go as far as recommending these websites to their peers who share the same interests, usually through social bookmarking.

2. Link up to be bookmarked
This method could yield better results, but it requires you to work harder. Build your credibility by having other people talk about you, preferably those who are leaders and opinion makers that your niche looks up to.

Make an account and visit all the forums that your niche frequents. Get yourself in the loop. Find out what they talk about and how they talk about your brand and others that compete in the same product category. Make relevant and helpful inputs, and then when people get used to your presence, insert your URL in your posts. The objective is to attract the opinion leaders to visit your website and have them talk about you more.

Another way to go about this is to check out blogs that talk about things related to your brand. The highest-ranking blogs usually have more credibility. The objective is to have these blogs link back to your website.

The last step is to create your own social bookmarking account and add all the blogs and forum pages that mention you or link back to your website.