TikTok came out with a new search feature. A lot of people, especially the youth, already use it.
But what is this new search engine exactly? Will it give Google a run for its seat as the search engine king? In this article, we will find out what is up with the new TikTok search engine and what it spells for your business.
Table of Contents
How Does TikTok Differ From Google?
Before anything else, it is important to understand the key differences between these two platforms. That way, you can retrofit your SEO strategies accordingly.
Google is a search engine. It was created and continues to function as a search engine. It organises all the available information online and enables users to conveniently search and access a diverse range of content (including TikTok videos) on the internet using specific queries, words, or phrases.
On the other hand, TikTok is a social media platform. It is centred on enabling users to create, post, share, and watch entertaining short videos of themselves.
What Is TikTok Search Engine?
So, what exactly makes TikTok as a search engine?
It is basically a search feature in the app. It enables users to search related video content and influencers using keywords, key phrases, and hashtags.
It first started as a simple search bar. Now, it has evolved to even suggest search terms while users check the comments section.
What Does It Mean For Marketers?
This new search engine is worth paying attention to for businesses with TikTok accounts and every digital marketer.
In just a few years, TikTok has grown into a formidable contender. The social media platform is already going toe to toe with tech giants like Facebook, Instagram, and YouTube.
TikTok, as a search engine, has a shot at overcoming Google. Just in late 2021, according to Cloudflare’s Year in Review report, the social media platform already topped Google as the most popular domain.
This is just proof that it is better to have a more integrated approach with your SEO and social media marketing campaigns as early as possible.
For digital marketers, it is time to amp up your efforts in creating and posting short-form videos. Not just any video, though. It needs to be entertaining, useful, and more importantly, vertically oriented.
Pros & Cons of TikTok As A Search Engine
That said, what are the advantages and disadvantages when are you using the TikTok search engine in your SEO campaigns? Let us start with the cons first:
Cons of TikTok Search Engine
It only works for its own platform
The most glaring limitation of the TikTok search engine is that it is only limited to its social media platform. Meaning you can only search video content that has been posted on TikTok.
Unlike Google, which allows you to search for content that is available on the internet.
It does not provide control over search results
Yes, you can find content related to your queries but the TikTok search engine does not give much control.
The filter feature in the search bar only allows you to do two things: One, swift through the video contents by the date it was posted, from “All time,” “This week,” “This month,” “Last 3 months,” and “ Last 6 months.” Two, you can only sort it by “Relevance” and “Most liked.”
Pros of TikTok Search Engine
But this should not deter you from utilising the TikTok search engine. It also has advantages that can help your business:
It makes it easy to find related video content
People can find and watch your short-form video. Just make sure you add the related keywords and key phrases in your captions and in-video text.
It offers diverse search engine options
Specifically InfluenceGrid. It is under the TikTok search engine umbrella. It is a tool that makes it easier for digital marketers to find the most popular TikTok content creators in a niche and part with them.
Its SEO kills two birds with one stone
The SEO strategies you apply for the TikTok search engine trickle down to Google as well. So long as the keywords are present in the caption, in-video text, and even hashtags, users can find them in TikTok and Google.
How To Optimise Your Content For TikTok SEO
Whether TikTok will eventually overtake Google as the search engine king is unclear.
But what we are sure of is this: You still need to optimise your short-form video content with TikTok strategies for SEO campaigns:
Understand Your Audience With TikTok SEO Analytics
It takes out the guesswork and paints a clear picture of your audience: Who they are; what they like; what motivates them. This in-depth information allows you to understand their search intent and serves as your blueprint for your content and marketing campaigns.
Select & Add Keywords In Your Videos
It is important to use the right keywords to make your videos much easier to find. Just remember a few things when you choose words and phrases for your SEO:
- Search volume
- Keyword difficulty
Keep in mind, there is no foolproof formula for this. Just make sure it aligns with your target audiences’ search intent. Once you have figured out the keywords you want to add, incorporate this into your video content: caption, title, and in-video text.
Use Hashtags In Your Strategy
Similar to SEO keywords, hashtags also play a role in making your video content more discoverable. Here are a few tips when you choose your hashtags:
- Relevant hashtags only.
You will not be able to cheat the system if you use other hashtags. Or worse, TikTok’s algorithm might even shadowban your account.
- Mix popular and niche hashtags.
Trending hashtags will help increase your video content’s exposure. However, keep in mind popular hashtags have tougher competition. On the other hand, niche hashtags have less competition and make it easier to target your audience.
Cross-Promote Your Video Content
Invite your followers to check out your other content. This is a no-brainer already. More importantly, it helps you grow your following, engagements, and traffic for your TikTok account and other platforms as well.
Redirect Your Audience To Your Website
It is a waste if your TikTok SEO strategies only help all your social media channels but not your digital storefront.
In addition, your website makes your business more valid, real, and trusted. Make sure to encourage your viewers to your website with a straightforward call-to-action. To make it easier, you can add in your profile bio a direct link to your website.
The Future of SEO With TikTok As A Search Engine
TikTok is a platform that puts importance on social validation by a like-minded community and shows proof through likes and shares. The creation of the TikTok search engine is a natural step to make it easier for users and content creators to navigate the social media platform.
One thing is clear: the existence and popularity of the TikTok search engine is a sign that times are changing. How people search and consume information and content is evolving yet again.
For digital marketers, this is another avenue to apply your SEO campaigns. However, the competition is no longer just with other marketers and businesses. Now, you are also competing and possibly collaborating with content creators.
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