In a marketing world filled with social media and information overload, content marketing has always been an important ingredient for success. Now, most industry experts have predicted that 2014 will be the Year of Content Marketing—and that Google+ will be essential for a strong online marketing strategy.
The search engine giant’s social network, launched in 2011, is still young compared to the other big players on the social scene. But there are already more than 340 million active monthly members on Google+, a number that’s second only to behemoth Facebook’s 1.2 billion.
Still, what makes Google+ so important for marketers in a content-driven era?
Here are three compelling reasons to integrate this platform into your 2014 online marketing strategy.
Content is for Searching—and Google Dominates Searches
The primary goal of content marketing is to increase your search engine rankings—for your website, your social media pages, and your shared content. Of course, there are other search engines besides Google, but there’s a reason “Googling” has become the most popular way to say “searching for something online.” According to the latest comScore data, Google holds 66.7% of the search engine market share. Microsoft’s Bing, the second-place search engine, doesn’t even come close with 18.1% of the market.
While Google doesn’t outright confirm this, it’s clear that content on Google+ is viewed favorably by its parent search engine. Active Google+ users enjoy higher rankings on the biggest search engine in the world.
Local SEO + Mobile Search = More Business
Some social networks have been late to the party with this feature, but Google+ has always offered a strong local component since the rollout of the network. Business pages on Google+ have evolved from the initial Google Places to the integrated Google+ Local, which provides plenty of helpful features for businesses.
Perhaps more importantly, these pages tend to rank high in local search terms—an essential consideration for mobile search since Google dominates even more than browser-based search with over 90% market share. And mobile search not only brings people to your business, it keeps them there: Search Engine Watch reports that 82% of shoppers use mobile phones to help them make in-store decisions.
Check out our complete guide to local marketing for more local marketing strategies.
Google+ Gives Your Content More Authority
When it comes to content marketing, it’s important that your potential customers view you as a trusted source. With Google+, you can lend your content more authority through Google Authorship.
The Google Authorship program lets you link content you publish anywhere on the web to your Google+ profile. This not only enables easier sharing, so your content gains more traction—it also heightens your visibility. Content that’s published using Google Authorship shows up on Google search results alongside your photo and bio from Google+, making your results instantly noticeable and boosting your authority.
Do you use Google+ as part of your online marketing strategy? Will you add this network to your marketing plans for 2014? Leave a comment and let us know!
Image courtesy of Widjaya Ivan
By Guest Poster Megan Totka
Megan Totka is the Chief Editor for _ ChamberofCommerce.com. She specializes on the topic of small business tips and resources. ChamberofCommerce.com helps small businesses grow their business on the web and facilitates connectivity between local businesses and more than 7,000 Chambers of Commerce worldwide._