Does posting content on Facebook benefit SEO?

At this point in time, circa March 2014, no; there is no evidence of greater reach (Likes) or engagement on Facebook being helpful in boosting a website’s search engine rankings. So, if you are thinking of using Facebook presence as another tactic to help drive more organic search engine traffic to your website, our advice would be to shelve that tactic for now. By all means use Facebook as a separate, standalone channel to create visibility and even try to pull in traffic, but don’t use that mainly to give a boost to your SEO efforts.

This is based on several websites and Facebook campaigns that we have studied closely. Even when the number of ‘Likes’ increased manifold (over 300%) in a span of 2-3 months and the engagement levels in terms of Shares and Comments to each post also recorded similar jump, we did not see any significant improvement in organic search engine referrals. There was an obvious lack of correlation between the two. Yes, referrals from Facebook to the websites we looked did increase over a period of time, but these referrals continued to be a significantly smaller percentage of overall traffic to the websites.

What we see is consistent with Google’s statement that at this time the search engine aren’t using any social signals from Facebook or Twitter as relevancy factors for their organic search results. In fact, in the video below, Matt Cutts of Google implies that Facebook and Twitter signals are certainly not being used as influencers for ranking on Google.

However, this is not to say that such social presence may not be considered as ranking factors in future. It is likely that as Google develops better algorithms that are even less reliant on links as a relevancy factor, social signals will be important.