Google Plus - Why Google+ Is Important & How To Use It

By CertifiedHosting 11/06/2013

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Everyone loves to bash Google+ for not being as popular as Facebook or Twitter. Well, folks, I have news for you: Google Plus has been on a slow roast for some time, during which it has been changing the Internet recipe (it’s a dish and a chef: deal with it) whether we are aware of it or not.

Beyond that, the temperature of the burner has been slowly rising. The Internet is a lobster (that’s what was roasting, I guess). Get ready to watch it scream. Oh, Facebook and Twitter are also lobsters. Possibly I am also a lobster.

Google Plus – combining search and social

Search engine optimization (SEO) and social media optimization (SMO) have always been considered separate but similar aspects of web presence. Because both of these fields – and the prominent sites in each space – are in competition with each other, it makes sense that a mega-company would attempt to combine the two into one dominant entity.

You could say that’s what Google attempted to do, but failed, with Google+. That, however, is not the case – so if you did just say that, please take it back. A 2013 Google search study conducted by the SEO/analytics company Moz makes it clear why Google Plus is not just growing into a significant force but actually is one already.
Moz study regarding Google search & Google Plus

Biannually, Moz conducts a careful analysis of rankings in Google. Because the site does not have direct access to the Google algorithm, it must make conjectures. The organization does so by correlating a number of different variables. Essentially, to determine the attributes of websites that appear highly on Google, they look at all of the different attributes and then see which ones appear over and over again on the top pages/sites.

The significance of Google Pluses – +1s – has a higher correlation with where a page shows up in the Google search engine than anything but Moz’s determination of Page Authority. Part of what’s amazing about this is that your prominence on Google+, as understood by how many users +1 the page, is more important even than Domain Authority, the Moz determination of the significance of an entire site. It’s even more important than the quality of the humor on your 401 error page, yo mama so unauthorized, oh, snap.

Searchmetrics conducted a similar study of Google Search, looking at Google Plus among other factors. That site’s findings showed that Google Plus-Ones are the most crucial single ranking factor to generate higher rankings. Suffice it to say that ignoring Google+, even now (and especially now in some senses), means taking a powerful device out of your SEO toolbox.

How to get more Google Plus-Ones

Okay, so Google is prioritizing Google+, or at least seems to be. How can we take advantage of this? Moz suggests several ways to get more pluses and optimize your social for search.

  1. Integrate yourself – Obviously Google Plus is a social platform, so get involved in the same way as you do on Twitter, Facebook, etc.. Add people to your circles, post quality ideas, and join the conversation by responding to other posts. Don’t forget to bathe.
  2. Beef it up – Be conscientious about not just throwing up a post with a few words. Consider writing lengthier descriptions and opinions. Each post on Google+ has a link associated with it. People may repost you or even link directly to your commentary.
  3. Become a Google author – Actually this tactic goes beyond amount of pluses. The Google Plus author tag – rel=”author” – not only further draws attention to your profile on the social site but also means that your Google+ image shows up on the left side of search engine result pages (SERPs), driving more traffic.
  4. Inter-mesh your social life – Google+ should be where you are spending your time, a central meeting ground feeding out to all your other online content and social accounts. In your About section on the Plus site, share links to all your relevant information, including Craigslist adult section posts.
  5. Site & plus potential – Beyond the author tag, there is also a publisher tag – rel=”publisher”. That tag allows you to hook your Google Plus business page to your own website.
  6. Add plus buttons to your site – Update your site so that it is easy for people to +1 your content. Obviously this is a top concern regarding the correlation findings of Moz.
  7. Work carefully on your profile – Again, think of Google+ as your online headquarters. Not only will that information improve how will you show up in searches, but it will also make it more likely people with similar interests and backgrounds will get a recommendation to connect with you.

Easing technical mastery with a simple Google+ tool

A company called Steady Demand has created a tool that helps you know how strong the setup of your Google+ profile is and how strong (technically) a post is. In other words, once you go through the process of creating your page, connecting with some people, and making a few posts, you can find out if everything is working correctly via this tool integrated with the Google API.

Access the tool here. If anything is wrong, please contact NASA.

By Kent Roberts