How to Use TikTok to Inform Your SEO Strategy
Unless you’ve been living under a rock, you are well aware that TikTok is a hot topic in the digital marketing world. In fact, some have referred to the social media platform the “search engine for Gen Z”.
The surge of TikTok influenced trends on our culture is evident, from the “Emily Mariko Salmon Bowl” to “It’s Corn!”.
With its ever changing algorithm, data privacy concerns, and viral moments, marketers are trying to understand how to leverage this tool to our benefit.
While TikTok isn’t replacing Google, it’s still a great opportunity to identify search trends before they show up in your on-site data.
Why Look at TikTok to Understand Search Trends?The social platform trends are clearly influential on search, as TikTok users turn to Google to learn more about the video content they consume.
For example, the following TikTok trends have significant search volume, meaning that users are leaving the app to learn more about the trends.
- Butter Board (74,000 MSV)
- NyQuil Chicken (49,500 MSV)
- Cloud Slippers (49,500 MSV)
However, trends go viral on TikTok before these “traditional” data sources capture the opportunity, leading to a missed opportunity for Organic Search strategy.
Instead of waiting for “SEO metrics” to validate a trend, we need to strategically create site content to address these opportunities.
This means shifting from a reactive approach to monitoring social trends and to be more proactive in our understanding of TikTok trends related to our products and services.
How do you Know what TikTok Users are Saying About Your Product, Brand, or Industry?Within the TikTokAds Creative Center, you’re able to get data on the Top Products trending on the site. This includes:
- Product category
- Popularity change
- Click-Through Rate (CTR), Conversion Rate (CVR), and Cost Per Action (CPA) for ad creatives
You’re also able to dig deeper into Performance and Audience Insights by Product Category, to help validate if the TikTok audience is relevant to your SEO Strategy:
While it’s great to understand the TikTok audience for different product categories, sometimes we just want to understand how TikTok users are discussing specific products or even our brand.
For that information, we can turn back to our old friend Google for a some advanced searches using search operators:
- site:tiktok.com “brand name”
- site:tiktok.com “product name”
- site:tiktok.com “head term”
This will populate all the TikTok URLs related to that term and give us an idea of what is out there related to these topics.
[TIP] Scrape all the title tags of the TikTok results on page 1 and run an n-gram script to get an idea of the themes being discussed.
For example: From the SEO SERP above, the top themes for TikTok videos about SEO are:
- How to
[5 Tips] for Creating Content that Captures TikTok Trends Through Organic Search
1. Create Landing Pages to Capture Search Interest from TikTok TrendsOnce you identify opportunities related to TikTok trends, take those ideas and turn them into landing pages.
Even if you don’t offer a product or solution that directly ties to the trend, you can get creative in ways to address the topic in a way that is relevant to your brand.
Connecting your brand to use cases from TikTok can communicate relevance and timeliness to your consumers, which can drive conversions on your site.
For example, this could look like PLPs for eCommerce sites, Solutions pages for SaaS sites, or even educational blog content.
Examples of sites targeting “butter board” trend:
earch terms generating conversions through paid.
2. Partner with TikTok Influencers for Guest PostingOne way for your brand to deepen expertise and authority on these trends is by partnering with the folks who started them!
Partnering with TikTok influencers through guest posting enables your brand to speak to the topic with authenticity and build credibility for your site. It’s also great for brand awareness!
With Google’s update to E-E-A-T, this is another way to signal “experience” by showcasing how actual users incorporate your product and services in their daily lives.
3. Analyze YouTube Placement in SERPs to Determine Video TopicsIf you look at the SERPs for your industry and don’t see TikTok ranking (yet), there’s still an opportunity to use SERP data to inform your approach to video.
You can scrape the SERPs for relevant terms to find what topics are triggering video packs and where YouTube is ranking organically. This indicates that Google thinks the right answer to your query is a video.
If video is ranking for a priority topic, that might be a signal to rethink your approach to digital search to account for this intent.
This could include:
- Starting an organic TikTok strategy
- Running a TikTok ad campaign to capture search interest
- Creating organic YouTube content to rank in Google
- Embedding video content within organic landing pages
Scrape the SERPs for the “Short videos” feature (primarily visible on mobile) to identify the visibility for your priority search terms. The presence of this featured carousel indicates that Google thinks that short videos are the best way to answer a user query.
4. Build Top Funnel Content Strategy to Introduce and Engage Users Coming From TikTokTikTok videos can pack a punch, but there’s only so much you can fit in short-form video. This leaves an opportunity for sites to expand on the information in TikTok videos through in-depth, top-funnel content to educate them further about a topic.
For example, several healthcare sites created blog style pages educating users about the dangers of the “NyQuil Chicken” TikTok trend:
Even if these users don’t immediately convert and lead to revenue for your business, it’s an opportunity to capture interest and generate leads through a metric like email newsletter signups. Getting these folks familiar with your brand through a newsletter is a great way to extend the customer relationship and encourage retention.
If you do find yourself posed to drive a significant amount of traffic to the site due to a TikTok trend, I recommend offering a special offer or discount to help convert that traffic.
5. Create Organic TikTok Content to Test Topics on Audience
One of the eternal struggles with SEO is the fact that it is slow - it can take anywhere from 2-6 months to get your content ranking and drive performance for your site. This means that it can take longer to learn and adapt strategy based on what is resonating with users and performing well.
One way to expedite this testing and learning process is to use other channels, like Paid Media or Email, to drive traffic to this content and observe performance. However, TikTok offers an opportunity to understand how “trendy” and “popular” a topic is, simply by feeding a video topic into the algorithm.
Not unlike other social media platforms, TikTok’s “For You” page relies heavily on user interaction to gauge interest in a particular topic. This leads to video content “going viral” very quickly, giving you real time results into how a topic is resonating with your audience.
This allows you to quickly test ideas for topics to pursue through content development to drive organic search. Once you identify those winning topics, you can build an organic strategy that aligns to the TikTok trends.
Continue the cycle by embedding the video content on the organic landing pages to increase on-site engagement.
SEO & TikTok: Stop Looking at Your Data in a Silo
Interested in trying out these ideas? Stop looking at your social and organic data in a silo and use big data tools to test ideas across channels.
Need help identifying where video may be an opportunity for your site? We can help with that.
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