social proofIn my previous posts, I have talked about social signals and author authority as two of the factors affecting ranking in Google right now.

This is, of course, in the light of the massive influence that social media sites like Facebook and Twitter have on people inching its way into every aspect of their lives.

Just try posting a question into your Facebook wall about where you should have dinner with your family and you’re bound to get numerous responses from your Facebook friends recommending a particular restaurant and some of them “liking” it. The more “likes” a recommendation gets, the greater the chances are that you will really go for it. It’s social proof or validation from your friends that it’s really a must-go-to dining experience.

It’s just like “moving with the herd” in the direction they lead you to. This phenomenon, akin to animals in a herd, really, is called social proof or informational social influence.

Thanks to Wikipedia again, social proof, also known as informational social influence, is defined as:

“a psychological phenomenon that occurs in ambiguous social situations when people are unable to determine the appropriate mode of behavior. Making the assumption that surrounding people possess more knowledge about the situation, they will deem the behavior of others as appropriate or better informed.

Social influence in general can lead to conformity of large groups of individuals in either correct or mistaken choices, a phenomenon sometimes referred to as herd behavior. Although social proof at least in part reflects a rational motive to take into account the information of others, formal analysis shows that it can cause people to converge too quickly upon a single choice, so that decisions of even large groups of individuals may reflect very little information.”

As social beings, we need to get the approval rating of people close to us or our family and friends before we could try out some new things. We do what they do, we read what they read, we wear clothes that they wear, we watch movies that they watch, we eat food that they eat because we value them and their opinions on such things.

That’s why Google is adamant in changing the ranking factor landscape again. Social signals and author authority have become so influential and even Facebook likes and Twitter retweets of your friends have recently shown up in search engine results.

Even Synnd has recently launched a Facebook Like Module for its Pro members. One of its core benefits is also establishing social proof like through comments, votes and bookmarks that beget more comments, votes and bookmarks.

The Span And Reach Of Social Proof Has Really Expanded.


Do you have social proof? Share your thoughts by leaving a comment below. If you enjoyed this post, don’t forget to share, retweet, or bookmark! Thank you!


To Your Success,

Elmar Sandyck
Elmar Sandyck

5 thoughts on “Do You Have What It Takes To Establish Social Proof?

  1. Hi Lani!

    Thanks for dropping by! Glad to see you here as well.

    That would really sum it up for all of us here what social proof is really about – “moving with the herd.” Aren’t we all social animals, anyway? 🙂


  2. Hi Ilka!

    Yes, moving with the herd is what almost everybody is doing with being followers in social media sites. Not really ideal and a good thing because you are stripped of your own freedom to do what you want to do. I think that’s the only time that it’s really bad per se, when you just follow blindly without really thinking why. We should be more discerning. We shouldn’t underestimate our own capacities to think and decide who and what to follow.

    But, on the other hand, yes, there is strength in numbers. But I think this should really be coupled with prudence, reflection, and thought – not just joining the bandwagon for the sake of being part of a group.

    Great comment as usual!

    Take care,

  3. Hi Jazmin,

    Yes, Google displays the most recent tweets in its search results. I would definitely suggest that you try to check it out if you have some time 🙂

    Thanks for dropping by and for the comment.

    To Your Success,

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