Google Plus Social Network allows you to build brand visibility and traffic to your site, when your brand and/or links to your site show up on:
- Google+ posts
- Google Search Plus Your World
Google Search Plus Your World
Google Search Plus Your World was launched with official explanation from Google. Three new features are to show up on Google’s search results pages:
- Personal Results – Which enable you to find information just for you, such as Google+ photos and posts—both your own and those shared specifically with you, that only you will be able to see on your results page.
- Profiles in Search – Both in autocomplete and results, which enable you to immediately find people you’re close to or might be interested in following.
- People and Pages – Which help you find people profiles and Google+ pages related to a specific topic or area of interest, and enable you to follow them with just a few clicks. Because behind most every query is a community.
Google Search Plus Box Ranking Factors
Conversation Marketing explains the ranking factors for your Google Plus Profiles to show up on Google Search Plus Your World’s “Plus Boxes”. The ranking factors from the most important to least important:
- Circle membership – Circle influential people with big circle membership.
- Post frequency – At least a few times a day. Remember, these posts can be re-shares or links to other interesting stuff you found on the web. It doesn’t have to all be original. Try to gain relevance for the non-commodity term that fits your industry. “Design”, not “Designer”. “Fashion”, not “Jeans”.
- Average plus ones per post
- Re-shares and replies (comments) per post – Comment on and re-share their stuffs that will get your followers to respond to them, and get you noticed. It’ll also help your own reach, as your re-shares are more likely to get passed around.
Factors that have little or no effect to Google+ SEO:
- Keyword relevance of your ‘about’ tab: Four profiles get consistent plus box placement for ‘seo’. Only two of them shows ‘SEO’ as the #1 topic in their about tab. Every profile has SEO as a topic, according to the content analysis API. But in two cases, it’s the third-ranking topic or lower.
- Topical relevance of your ‘about’ tab: That said, all plus box profiles for every test query had about tabs relevant to the overall ‘space’. All ranking ‘seo’ profiles, for example, cluster around search, search marketing, the industry and related topics. All ‘movies’ profiles cluster around show business. Meh. That could mean anything. But at least a bike shorts manufacturer won’t start showing up in SEO rankings (we hope).
- Keyword relevance of your posts: Totally meaningless. Write whatever you want. Seriously. Just make it good.
Google Plus SEO Best Practices
Blind Five Year Old has listed the 9 items of Google+ SEO Best Practices:
- Optimize your Google+ Profile – Fill out your Introduction, Employment, Education and Places lived understanding that the text in these sections is used for Google+ search. If you want to be returned for the term ‘SEO’ you need to have that term in one of these fields. Placing the term in two or more fields seems to deliver some added benefit. Do it if it makes sense but don’t go overboard.
- Get Verified – A verified name with that small checkmark icon seems to have some influence on Google+ search. When I figure out exactly how to make this happen I’ll let you know.
- Confirm Authorship – Google+ is an identity platform that allows you to claim Authorship of your content. Doing so delivers a type of rich snippet in search results that will increase the visibility and click-through rate on your content today and may put you in the catbird’s seat when Google implements AuthorRank.
- Use the +1 Button – Put the +1 button on your site prominently so users can deliver your content to Google+. Not only will this result in traffic to your site, it allows Google to understand how people are engaging with your content.
- Optimize Social Snippets – It’s not enough to just create content and have the +1 button on your site. Optimize your social snippet to ensure you’re getting the most engagement out of your content.
- Create Great Content – Put this in the ‘no duh’ category, but really, create great content. It’s not enough on its own but everything gets easier if you do this.
- Share Great Content – Great content takes time so you won’t always be sharing your content. Instead, share the great content of others. Make your Google+ feed valuable and interesting and you’ll be rewarded.
- Format Google+ Posts – Just putting a URL as your Google+ post won’t cut it. Create a bold title for each of your (longer) posts. Not only is this easier to read it’s what Google will use as the browser Title on Search+. You should also start to use hashtags, sparingly, to ensure your posts are aggregated appropriately.
- Use Google+ – Really use Google+. Using it for the express purpose of SEO won’t be successful. Do or do not. There is no try.
Search Engine Land has summarized Blind Five Year Old’s investigation on the possible ranking considerations when searching inside Google+ itself – Factors that influence Google’s search results when you type “SEO” into the Google+ search box and look for relevant other Google Plus users:
- The search term must appear in one of these sections of your profile: Introduction, Employment, Education or Places. For example, Danny Sullivan didn’t show up in Google+ searches for “SEO” until he added that keyword into the Introduction section of his Google+ profile.
- Using the keyword in more than one of those fields helps.
- The “Occupation” field isn’t used.
- There’s already a fair amount of spamming of these profile fields happening.
Google Plus SEO Example
Smart Insights demonstrates a Google Plus example on H&M in which the brand has managed to hijack a large portion of the search engine results page for ‘David Beckham’. If you count up the individual items, there are more than ten individual links through to H&M’s Google+ content when logged in, zero when not logged in.
H&M has achieved 2 things at the most basic level:
- Grown a large Google+ following – Big enough that they affect more than 500,000 peoples’ search results when they are logged into G+.
- Shared a lot of content related to David Beckham on Google+.
And when H&M’s followers reshare their Google+ content, and you’re following their sharers, the effect spreads much further.
Google Plus Growth Data (from Compete.com)
Compete.com reported on Google Plus data:
- Unique visits in December 2011: Google Plus (20 million) vs Twitter (40.4 million)
- Google+’s December unique visits have increased 4 times from July’s 5 million
- The plusone.google.com sub-domain had 60 million unique visits in December 2011
Google Plus for Social Media Marketing
For Google+ social media marketers to get the most out of Google Plus:
- Add Google +1 Buttons to Websites – Add +1 buttons to your site
- Google Plus Profile URL Shorterner – Make your Google+ Profile easy to remember
- Google Analytics Social Reports for Google +1 – Review the performance of the +1 social engagement, social actions and social pages in Google Analytics
- Google Plus Keyboard Shortcuts – Learn the keyboard shortcuts
- Google Plus Invitations – Invite more people to join Google+
- Google Plus Experts on Google Plus Social Network – Follow the Google Plus Experts