Search, meet social. Social, meet search. Although this is not a new concept, and we see search results pull up Facebook profiles to click on, or where to find a company on LinkedIn, Google has entered the social networking space and has raised some eyebrows on how they are managing the connection between the social accounts they’ve acquired, and search results they serve to these users.
Google handles about two-thirds of the Internet search requests made in the U.S. while Bing processes less than one-third, including the activity that comes through a partnership with Yahoo, Inc. As a marketer, you cannot ignore Google’s power. If you look at your website analytics, I’d bet the majority of traffic coming to your website from search engines is coming from Google. If you are using YouTube, and it’s driving traffic…well, Google owns that too.
Google+ is Google’s social network. The reason it may be important to have a Google+ profile, and appropriate Google+ buttons on your website, is because you can improve your search engine optimization while gaining new followers. Searches on general topics such as “music” and “sports,” will generate suggestions on people and companies that have Plus accounts. Also, the number of followers you have on Google+ seem to be important when it comes to search engine rankings. For example, when someone who is following your account on Google+ searches for a product you offer, your site could appear in the top 5 search results because you shared a link to it on your Google+ profile. When someone not logged into Google+ searches for the same product, your site could potentially end up on the second page of search results depending on how you optimized the product page today. This may not be the case all the time, but leveraging Google+ could produce
a quick SEO win.
In part 3 of Our Driving Social Engagement Series, we address Google+ and the options you have to integrate this social network into your website.
Tale of the Tape: Google+
- Registered Users: 90 Million unique visitors
- Activity: Roughly 42% are looking for friends
- Age: 50% are 24 years or younger
- Male: 71% (early adopters, engineers, and developers)
- Female: 29%
- Interesting Fact: Google now sprinkles Google+ results into general search results, in an initiative they’ve dubbed “Google Plus Your World.” For instance, a query about a particular brand or product might include links and comments made about that brand or product by other people in one of the social circles on the user’s Plus account. Google+ is on fire outside of the U.S. as well.
Social Media Plugins For Google+
Google+ Page/Profile Button
This is Google+’s version of the follow button, however, it’s not a one-click follow button. Users have to click through to your Google+ business page and then manually add your page to one of their Circles in order to follow you. However, displaying this button on your website is a great way to promote your business’ presence on Google+ and generate more followers for your page, increasing the reach of the content you promote there.
Get me the button: http://www.google.com/webmasters/profilebutton/
The +1 Button is Google’s version of Facebook’s Like Button. Adding this button to your website and content provides an easy way for visitors to +1 (vote for, thumbs up, endorse) your content, recommend it in search results, and share it with their connections on Google+, expanding the reach of your content and increasing traffic back to your business’ website.
Get me the button: http://www.google.com/webmasters/+1/button/
Google+ Share Link
Like Facebook share links, you can easily generate a link that visitors can click to share content to their Google+ page. The only difference between this link and the +1 button is that it appears as a link rather than a button. The benefit of using this is to enable visitors to share a specific piece of content within a larger piece of content.
To create a Google+ share link, replace the bolded piece of the URL with the URL you want people to share. Then hyperlink your desired anchor text using the full link. https://plusone.google.com/_/+1/confirm?hl=en&url=http%3A%2F%2F%20http://bit.ly/GXj7i0
Other good news: When a visitor clicks the link, they will have automatically +1′ed the content and will have the opportunity to click “Add a comment” to customize a message and share it with their Google+ connections.