Content, SEO and social media news: weekly round-up

Social media activity linked to Google ranking

New research from Search Metrics has revealed that the number of Facebook and Twitter shares that a website incurs is directly related to their Google search ranking. Search Metrics considered the search results of 300,000 websites and 10,000 common keywords to collate the information. The data showed that Facebook had the biggest influence on SEO, with a correlation of 0.37. Meanwhile, websites with too many advertisements found that their rankings decreased. The changes are assumed to be a result of Google’s recent Panda update, which promised to prioritise high quality content and penalise black-hat SEO.

European e-commerce market is now the world’s largest

Information from the European Multi-channel and Online Trade Association (EMOTA) shows that Europe’s e-commerce sector is now the largest in the world, outstripping North America. The figures showed that the European e-commerce industry grew by 19% last year, and online sales now account for more than 5% of Europe’s total retail market, with shoppers spending an average of €1000 online each year.

LinkedIn security breach

Popular social networking platform LinkedIn recently experienced a security breach, during which 6.5 million user passwords were stolen. Although the passwords were ‘hashed’, meaning that hackers couldn’t log into the accounts in questions, they were also ‘unsalted’, which meant that they were far easier to crack. We all changed our passwords, and if you haven’t already, you should too! LinkedIn is a great platform for building business relationships, but only if your account is not compromised.