Matt Cutts, of Google fame, addresses links from Twitter and Facebook. Our opinion is a link from a authortative site such as twitter and/or Facebook has value, whether or not the link is followed or has the nofollow tag applied. Google is smart enough to understand the weight of a powerful social system such as Twitter and Facebook.
He answers this question: Links from relevant and important sites have always been a great way to get traffic & acceptance for a website. How do you rate links from new platforms like Twitter, FB to a website?
Essentially, Matt says Google treats links the same whether they are from Facebook or Twitter, as they would if they were from any other site. It’s just an extension of the pagerank formula, where its not the amount of links, but how reputable those links are (the company uses a similar strategy for ranking Tweets themselves in real-time search).
While Facebook and Twitter links may be treated like any other links, they do still come with things to keep in mind. For one, with Facebook, you have to keep in mind that a lot of profiles are not public. When a profile is not public, Google can’t crawl it, and it can’t assign pagerank on the outgoing links if it can’t fetch the page to see what the outgoing links are. If the page is public, it might be able to flow pagerank, Matt says. With Twitter, most links are nofollowed anyway.
“At least in our web search (our organic rankings), we treat links the same from Twitter or Facebook or, you know, pick your favorite platform or website, just like we’d treat links from WordPress or .edus or.govs or anything like that,” says Cutts. “It’s not like a link from an .edu automatically carries more weight or a link from a .gov automatically carries more weight. But, the specific platforms might have issues, whether it’s not being crawled or it might be nofollow. It would keep those particular links from flowing pagerank.”
By Chris Crum