Google+ is slowly but surely becoming a social tool that businesses and individuals can’t avoid any longer. Creating and utilizing a Google+ profile can be helpful for SEO, and Google+ has some helpful and fun features that both individuals and brands can make use of. It’s starting to look like 2014 might just be the year of Google+.
Just last week, Google announced that any Google+ and Gmail user can now send emails to anyone with a Google+ account. That means that brands can send emails to all of their fans. While this has caused some controversy on privacy, it’s important to remember that this could be a great tool for marketing and networking, if everyone isn’t too creepy about it!
The photo and video editing tools, aptly named Auto Awesome, were updated late last year. Auto Awesome is a fun way to easily create interesting new versions of photos and videos. The Smile tool is enough to sway people over to Google+. Since Google+ is a media-sharing-heavy page, it’s great that you have built in tools available to make the photos and videos you’re sharing more interesting, if you want to edit them. Auto Awesome has lots of different features included; watch Google’s video below to find out more!
Communities, Hangouts, & Circles
Communities, Hangouts, and Circles are fantastic tools for joining together like-minded people over common interests. Brands can gather their fans and share information specifically for those fans, as well as be available for other people who might become fans. Individuals can find products or topics they are interested in, and learn about businesses that may be useful to them.
Another controversial Google+ mandate has been requiring YouTube users to use a Google+ profile in order to comment on videos. Not only does this move help Google+ get more active users, but it helps clean up the infamous YouTube comments section, since trolls can’t be anonymous. This is great news for anyone not looking for crazy comments on the videos they share (which I would think is everyone, brands and individuals alike).
Importance to SEO
Creating and optimizing your brand’s Google+ profile is another way to help your company be found in Google searches. Not only will the Google+ profile appear on the search engine results page, but it could also appear in the Knowledge Graph. Google+ profiles are also an important part of implementing Google Authorship and Google Publisher, both of which are integral to SEO. Utilizing features and posting interesting content consistently can help grow your brand’s presence online. For more information on aligning social media profiles with SEO, read Heidi Kramer’s recent post on the subject.
While a lot of people think Google may be forcing Google+ on us, the features and benefits of Google+ make it worth using this year! Are you on Google+ or avoiding it? Comment below on why or tweet at me, @smb1213. Resistance may be futile…