Recently, Google announced that it would move the core of the Google+ development team to work on the Android operating system. Many critics see this as proof that Google’s platform Google+ is a failure and not worthy of usage. However, that point of view is seriously flawed and overlooks important benefits that Google+ offers small and medium-sized businesses. Luckily, gaining these benefits is as easy as setting up your Google+ account and remembering to regularly post to it.
Everyone agrees that Google is one of the biggest and most important players in the search engine world, because in addition to its many other enterprises, Google still retains the largest share of the search engine market. This means that the vast majority of consumers doing online searches for information use Google to help determine where they spend their money.
Therefore, having a high ranking and a strong presence on Google is important for your business to get the edge on your local competition.
Most people think of the social networking aspect of Google+ when they think of the system. However, Google+ is far more than just a social network. It is a fully integrated online platform that significantly impacts your online presence.
In fact, Google+ makes up the foundation of most of Google’s offerings and significantly influences Google’s rankings of your business.
Google uses many pieces of information to determine search rankings for businesses in a local area. The first of those is how much information the engine has available about the business. This knowledge starts at the Google+ Local profile, formerly known as Google Places.
If Google has a Google+ page for a business, it is much more likely to be shown in search results than a business that does not have a page.
It also offers an easy avenue for users to review and rate your business, and since Google takes reputation very seriously, if your business has positive reviews, it is more likely to be displayed in search results.
The next piece of information that Google uses to rank results is the amount of activity that an entity has on the web and how much it engages users.
Businesses that post more to Google+ are going to be seen as being more active and more relevant and they will have more content that can generate search results.
Social networks such as Facebook and LinkedIn do not offer this advantage.
Google also likes to see entities participate in multiple locations on the internet, as opposed to just on their own sites or pages, and one way that the search algorithms keeps track of that is through Google Authorship. Many sites will allow authors to link their posts and content back to their Google+ profiles so that Google can track the author’s activity through Google Authorship. It also yields very nice-looking results on Google pages, which include a thumbnail of your profile photo to the left side of the entry on the search results.
Users are more likely to click on a listing if it includes an image in the result, and this is especially useful if you are the face of your business as it builds recognition and reputation.
Because Google is the most important player in the search engine market, it’s a smart business practice to work within their ecosystem and take full advantage of the tools that they offer. As long as you set up your business profile on Google+ and maintain it, you ensure that your business is more likely to be viewed favorably by Google. As you can see, Google+ is a very easy way to bring your internet presence to the next level.