How Foursquare affects SEO

foursquare logo

Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, are among some of the many social media outlets that affect SEO.  However, what many local businesses don’t know is how Foursquare can also aid in their SEO efforts.

This entry is a guest post by Alexis Tate edited by Sean Si

Foursquare emerged in 2009 and was deemed the “new Twitter” in 2010.  A social media outlet specifically created to allow users to “check-in” to their favorite restaurants, stores, etc., receive deals, and share their check-ins with friends, Foursquare is yet another free social media tool to be used by businesses to better their SEO and overall sales.

Here’s how Foursquare works:

  1. Users create an account and check-in to the places they go.
  2. Participating businesses offer deals and discounts to those who check-in as well as specials to those who are “regulars.”
  3. Users’ check-ins not only get shared with their Foursquare friends, but to all of their Facebook friends and Twitter followers if they opt to do so.

Foursquare encourages not only sharing, but brand loyalty.  It’s truly a win-win situation for those businesses and customers that choose to participate.

Apart from the impact sharing and customer incentives will have on a business’ online presence, Foursquare affects SEO in a very simple way: Businesses with Foursquare profiles get indexed and crawled by Google.  This means that it could directly affect business’ ranking on search engines.

Foursquare SEO Hacker

Here’s how you can use this free tool to your advantage:

First, if you discover that your profile has already been created, you must claim it and ensure that all of the information is correct; or if your business does not already have a Foursquare profile, create one.  It is imperative that your location is correct because when crawlers go through your Foursquare page, they will take note of the address and, if all goes well, this will aid your business in showing up in local Google searches.  For instance, if your Italian restaurant is in New York City, you want it to show up in Google searches for restaurants local to New York City, not Denver, Colorado; Denver does your business no good.

Second, when creating your business’ profile, include keywords in its description, without over-doing it.  You want to adequately describe your business without making it seem like you created the profile specifically to get ranked on search engines.  Google developers have implemented certain precautions to weed out blatant SEO attempts.  Keeping things simple and natural is your best bet in this situation.

Third, leaving tips in a business location that you ‘Manage‘, allows you to place in a nofollow link to your site. It doesn’t really help your SEO directly but traffic coming in can indirectly raise you up a bit.

Put very shortly, Foursquare offers businesses not only public customer endorsement, exposure, and loyalty, but also an opportunity to directly affect page rankings.  Ultimately, businesses using Foursquare have the potential to increase traffic to their physical and virtual address, and increase their earnings.

Key takeaway: Foursquare has limited effects on SEO – we have yet to see Foursquare really open up its gates to the SEO world – in fact a user’s profile looks like this:

Foursquare SERP SnippetIt didn’t even get my name right. The description is also the same for every profile. It’s just not that friendly to SEO. In fact, it’s a very weak social media account that I don’t recommend it for Social Media Reputation Management or for Linkbuilding either.

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  • I’ve didn’t knew that a network could affect your SEO so much…I still don’t belive that Foursquare will affect my SEO so much.

    • Foursquare really doesn’t have that much impact on SEO. We’ll still have to see how much they are going to open their doors to the search engines sometime soon.

  • I have never heard of this before. It intrigued me. I’m heading over to the foursquare website after I submit this comment. Thank you for the post.

  • The promoting on Foursquare is expected to increase this year. The popularity of this platform makes it more attractive to SEO marketers. I think we should consentrate on content optimiation and link building via Foursquare . But I am also sure that Foursquare is not a good platform for every business.

  • truly saying still now i do know about what is foursquare you explained here very clearly so i am going to give a try and i am having one if suppose iam creating a profile i can add my site links to get a dofollow link?

    • Hi Shree,
      Unfortunately, it does not give out a dofollow link. But having a foursquare profile won’t hurt.

  • vikas

    Hello Alexis , I have never heard of foursquare before this. Just searched for it and I am amazed to see a PR 9 site with awesome traffic. Let me dig into this one..As twitter is already working fine for me…Thanks!!

  • bobspencer

    I have been using Facebook and twitter for years but i never knew about foursquare – i immediately created an account there . Thanks!

  • Cindy

    I have never heard of foursquare before. I wonder what else there is that I don’t know!

    Certainly, Facebook and twitter have a positive impact on SEO, but I’m not sure about foursquare.

  • Hey Alexis, I did not ever hear about foursquare before this reading this post. Its quite surprising to see the PR9 for this website, seems to be a fruitful website. Just created my account on it, looking forward to make the most from it.

  • Haven’t heard about this before. But I think networks like this won’t have much impact on your site’s SEO but will most likely increase your connections. These connections might be converted to customers which will be an added revenue for you.

    Spatch Merlin
    More Web Site Traffic Guide

  • This is a first for me. I have a friend who owns It is a Kirby Service Center and we have been working on his site for some time now and never knew this could be of any kind of help towards SEO. We will implement this asap. Thanks

  • I created a foursquare page for my travel blog. It has a PR5 – the links are no-follow, but Rand Fishkin says your strategy should always include some high quality no-follow inbound links.

  • Rajesh Kumar

    Someone Copying content form your website

    Same post

    • Thanks for this Rajesh :) It’s okay scrapers do that – They will not rank anyway. Not with the new Google algorithms around.

    • Richard Paul

      hello Rajesh Kumar, can i get to meet you? There is something I think we can do together.

      Richard Paul