Commentary

Share Buttons on Social Sites Increase Exposure Sevenfold

According to BrightEdge, an in-depth analysis of more than 4 million tweets shows pages that display Twitter share buttons get 7 times the social media mentions than sites that do not, pointing to enormous social marketing opportunity.

The September issue of the BrightEdge SocialShare Analysis shows that almost half of the largest 10,000 sites on the Web still don't display any kind of social sharing links or buttons. 53.6% of the largest 10,000 sites on the Web display some social links or buttons on their front pages, up from 52.8 percent in late July.

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Adoption of Social on Homepages of Top Websites (Top 10,000 Websites)

Type of Site

% of Total

Sites with social links of plugins

53.6%

No social links or plugins

46.4

Source: BrightEdge Research, September 2011

Jim Yu, CEO of BrightEdge, notes that "... social sharing buttons can drive real social traffic that will inevitably drive sales, brand awareness or affinity...  but... brands are not taking advantage of this simple, cost free tool... "

The study analyzed a representative data stream of 4 million tweets that were selected at random to determine which tweets carried shared information, and if it was shared with tools and buttons, links or other methods.
The examination revealed that pages that display Twitter share buttons or links were distributed to followers on average about seven times more often than pages that did not have similar sharing tools. This could lead to exposure to millions of additional consumers for the sites that took the modest step of just installing social sharing buttons, opines the report.

Average Number of Link Mentions Per Site

Buttons

Mentions

Sites with no Buttons

4

Sites with Tweet Button

27

Source: BrightEdge Research, Aug 2011

In the social adoption analysis, all of the leading social sites saw increases in usage compared to the previous month, but the two largest and most established social platforms have commanding leads in market share. Facebook plugins (e.g. the Like button and links to fan pages) are seen on homepages of more than 50 percent of the world's largest sites. While buttons and links for Twitter are seen on 42.5 percent of the top 10,000 sites. Google plus continues to grow, but is still only used on about 8.5 percent of the largest 10,000 sites.

Social Links/Plugins on Homepages of Top Sites

Social Site

With Social Links/Plugins

Change From Previous Month

Facebook

50.3%

Up from 49.5%

Twitter

42.5%

Up from 42.4%

Google+

8.1%

Up from 7.3%

LinkedIn

4.0%

Unchanged

Source: BrightEdge Research, SocialShare Analysis, September 2011

While this growth is healthy, concludes the report, there are still a surprising number of major sites that have not fully embraced social marketing. The absence of any social engagement vehicles such as Social Links, Facebook plugins and Twitter Buttons on the homepages of a large number of major sites shows there is significant untapped opportunity for social media to drive greater marketing exposure for brands.

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