Google+ might not be everyone’s favourite “network”, but it certainly does have its benefits, whether you’re working for yourself or on behalf of a brand. There have been changes in the strategy for Google+ recently, including a change in the naming policy for users, which may make adamant users reconsider their stance on Google’s “social platform”. However, marketing-wise, how can you benefit from having a presence on Google+?
While we’ve already tackled 5 main myths around Google+, here are 3 things you can benefit from:
The impact that Google+ has on Google search results and their ranking makes it a great option if you’re looking for visibility – and who isn’t? Google+ helps you boost the work you’re already doing with your site’s SEO in numerous ways, making it an optimal source of traffic.
- Quicker Indexing and Surfacing: links you share on Google+ get indexed right away, faster than waiting for Google to crawl your site for new content. An immediate benefit of that is that your Google+ posts will appear in people’s search results, even if those posts point to your own site. Your posts will rank even higher if they receive more engagement. Additionally, if a user has you in their circles, or if they follow you, your content will appear even higher in search results. (This is why if you search for your own posts on Google+, they’ll automatically appear as the first search results.)
- Hashtags: Google+ identifies the key topics of your Google+ posts, so people searching for related keywords will see your posts on their search results based on relevancy.
Quick tip: to benefit even further from all of this SEO boost, don’t just post a link to your posts – add a brief summary (a paragraph or two) explaining what your link is about. This will help you get targeted even easier.
This is especially useful if you’re more of a content creator rather than a curator – so writers, publishers, and the like. Adding markup to your site will help your profile/page be shown on search results. For instance, I benefit personally from this, as I do write on Link Humans as well as my blog, but search results for both will both have a link to my Google+ profile, a nice way to aggregate all your content from everywhere on the Internet. Authorship markup is also a way to claim ownership for every piece of writing you create, whether you own a Google+ profile or a Google+ page.
(Click here to request authorship for your site.)
Quick tip: make sure you sign up to Google Webmaster Tools using the same account as your Google+ Page or Profile. You’ll then have access to your Author Stats to see see what articles point to you and very useful stats like impressions over time, clicks, their average ranking in search results etc.)
3) Google+ Ripples:
While there aren’t a lot of social analytics tools that cater to Google+ (partly due to API limitations), Google+ does have an analytics feature called Ripples. This is an interactive graph that shows who publicly shares your content, while showing how it propagates in other people’s streams and cirlces over time. Besides being a really nice data visualisation tool, there are mainly two things I love about this:
- You can quickly identify the influencers among your engaged users. Once identified, you can group them in a private circle and target them, as part of your Influencer Marketing strategy;
- You can also see comments people have added to their shares, to see how people respond to your content besides what they may (or may not) write in your comments section.
There’s more to Google+:
These are only 3 of the many features you can benefit from when you have a presence on Google+, be it with a profile or a page.
As always with Google+, I recommend taking the time to explore it and seeing what works for you and your brand.
Finally, in case you don’t already, you can follow Link Humans on Google+ right here.