It’s almost been two full years since Google+’s official launch, and many businesses are still wondering how to use it in their social media marketing plan.
This article is part of a six part series by Wishpond. We explore the business benefits of the social media platform, Google+, and how it can help your online marketing efforts.
Google+, the King of Search Engine Optimization
Google+ sets itself apart from other social media networks like Facebook and Twitter by having a heavy emphasis on Search Engine Optimization (or SEO). As a short rule of thumb, Google Search favours listings that are more authentic and have received more social credibility from others. For example, sites that are frequently “Liked” through Facebook’s system generally do better than similar sites, all other things held equal. Sharing things on Google+ and encouraging others to +1 your content works in very much the same way, except the impact will be even more pronounced because it is Google’s own system.
Here are some tips to take advantage of this unique situation:
Here is an example by Smartinsights.com about how using Google+ can strongly affect search rankings.
The first search is carried out on David Beckham while not logged in. The results seem relatively ordinary and have little to do with any brand in particular.
The second search is carried out once the author of the post was logged in. The results are vastly different.
Photo credit and experiment idea goes to smartinsights.com
The business applications of this are obvious. The more people follow and subscribe to your Google Plus content, the higher you rank in their search results (generally speaking). To take advantage of this, here are some tips from Cyrus on making the most of Google+ for search engine optimization.
_ Stay on top of your Profile and Post Links _
By embedding links directly to your profile page, you can raise the visibility of your own website once more people click and engage with your link.
Profile links are similar, except you can post as many links as you want directly into your posts. The more people who click, share, and +1 your link, the higher that link will rank in Google search rankings. Thus, you can use your Google+ profile and posts to expose links to more people, which can tangible increase the validity and trustworthiness of the links themselves!
Make Sure the First Word of your Post is Important!
The first sentence of your Google+ posts are a part of the title tag, which has a much higher weight when it comes to rankings. As such, it is an incredibly important keyword for your post and must be chosen with care for proper Google search engine optimization.
Post your Content on Google+ to Increase Visibility
Content that is shared on Google+ is added to Google searches (or indexed) much quicker than on other sites. As such, all new content that you create should be spread on Google+ or other social media sites in order to ensure it is optimized as soon as possible.
Don’t Give up on Google+
While hopefully if you’ve read this far, we’ve convinced you to at least take a second look at Google+. Take this opportunity to be an early adopter and get well established before everyone else clogs up the system. It is a small investment of time and effort that could have significant payoffs for your business.
Blogging and Authorship
For those of you who frequently blog and post content online, one way to ensure your hard-earned content remains readily available to all viewers is to sign up for Google+ Authorship. How this works is that you can link all new content directly back to your Google+ profile page, so that both Google and your viewers know that all your content is from a trustworthy source. Signing up is very simple if you already have an existing Google+ account, and can be done here.
An example of a Google+ Author, taken from the Google Authorship Registration Page
Advantages of Google+ Authorship
Trustworthiness on Two Fronts
Regular viewers who may not know about your other works or affiliations can easily visit your Google+ profile page. The more traffic that leads to your site, the higher the chance of +1s, shares, and comments, which leads to better search optimization for all your current and future content.
Additionally, Google+ now realizes that the content you produce on another site (like a blog post from Tumblr, for example), is from a trustworthy source because it is linked back to your Google+ page. This also leads to a higher search ranking for all your future content.
More People in Your Circles, Better Visibility
Content shared on Google+ provides better visibility for the people in your circles, which leads to an increase in followers. Google+ Circles can expose your content to people who share your interests, but are not current readers.
Building up the Author Rank
The more popular, high quality articles an author writes, the more web visibility all associated articles receive. By establishing yourself as a reliable provider of excellent content, Google+ rewards you with better search results.
The Power of +1
Google +1 is an incredibly important part of any Google+ based marketing strategy. It is incredibly useful for search engine optimization (or SEO), and can get many of your pages indexed and noticed by Google’s search ranking.
Here are some tips on how to make the +1 system a central pillar of your digital marketing strategy:
- Install the Google+ One Button on your actual website in a good location. This allows users a chance to promote your content and increase the authenticity of your site. The more +1s on your site, the better off your content will be.
If you haven’t already, create a Google+ Business Page. Even several years after its inception, not too many businesses have expanded to Google+. By acting as an early adopter, you can outmaneuver your competition before they have a chance to enter the network.
Don’t neglect your other social media sites. While Google+ may be the social media network of the future, other sites like Facebook and Twitter currently have increased reach. Find a balance in your social media usage.
Try to encourage recommendations and reviews of your Google+ Business Page. The more people that support your page, the more authentic it becomes in the eyes of both Google Search and your audience.
At Wishpond, we want you to succeed in your social media marketing. That’s why we developed easy to use social promotion apps, and put them into our Social Marketing Suite. You gain access to all our contest, sweepstakes and group deal apps, which work on Twitter, Facebook, and your website.