Google Goes Social. So What?

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google+ usersThe news of Google’s integration of Google+ into their search results took the internet by storm yesterday.

So yes, I am a bit late to the party. But it’s only one day, so that’s OK. And that one day (or one night really) gave me the opportunity to think it through and try to figure out what this really means for the population in general, and for businesses.

If you want to check out the new features check out this post by Francisco Rosales at Social Mouths. He does a great job of going over the changes.

My gut instinct after thinking this through is…it won’t make too much of a difference.

Business Implications

Most internet-savvy businesses have already realized that Google+ is probably important for their content marketing purposes. If you want to rank content, you want to share it on Google+. Period.

It’s a social network owned by Google for god’s sake! Of course they’re going to take it into account in their rankings!

What Google has really done is re-confirm that businesses should create a Google+ account and try to optimize it for whatever keywords you are trying to rank for.

But this is nothing new.

I recently shared a couple of infographics, and posed the question: “Is Google+ a Waste of Time?

My opinion hasn’t changed.

Social Implications

I’ve already stated that you should create a Google+ account and a page for your business. You should share your content on Google+. You should try to connect with other influencers and get them to share your content as well.

All of these things will help your search rankings by showing up in the personalized results of more people.

However, unless you are a business focusing on serving techies, bloggers or maybe some other internet-savvy businesses, Google+ still isn’t a great place to interact with customers (or potential customers).

Where Google Fails

My instinct tells me that Google is trying to take control of the social network game. They’ve created the fastest growing social network in history. Yet they haven’t gone mainstream.

And they are trying to go mainstream. That is why they have been promoting Google+ with TV commercials.

Could this be another step they are taking to try to further their advancement? I think that’s probably the case.

Unfortunately, this step just re-emphasizes why the people that already use Google+ (businesses, bloggers, and techies), should continue to use it.

The average Joe is still on Facebook. And my prediction is they’re going to stay on Facebook.

After someone publishes content, and puts forth the effort on Google+ to get it ranked, the average non-techie reader is more likely to go and share that content on Facebook.

That’s not a bad thing, of course. It will get you the exposure you desire. But I don’t think Google+ has advanced their standing as a mainstream social network here.

Google+ is still good for business, not for being social (play on my last blog post title…see what I did there? :) ).

Your Two Cents…

Does this help Google’s cause in creating a mainstream social network?
Are you already using Google+?
Do you use it for personal or business purposes?
If so, has it had any effect on your business results?
If not, does this news convince you to join Google+?

2 Responses to Google Goes Social. So What?
  1. Jens P. Berget

    Hi Eugene,

    I’m still not sure what G+ will end up being, but I agree with you so far. It’s important to be using G+, because it’s owned by Google, and some of the people I’m already connected with are using it. But most people I know, average people (friends, family, and co-workers) are using Facebook and not G+. And I believe that they won’t change, and they won’t be using both. They’ve spent way too much time on Facebook and building their profiles, connecting with people and adding images etc.. to switch to G+.

    My question is this, should we as businesses be using both, because we’re reaching different people on G+ compared to Facebook?

    • Eugene

      Completely agree about the time investment in Facebook. It is pretty much ingrained in the lives of the vast majority of the population (unlike Google+). It may be a case of too little, too late for Google. They will certainly get a decent share of members (there’s a lot of internet-savvy people out there), but I don’t think they’ll ever get to the heights that Facebook has.

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