Day 22 of the bigmouthmedia SEO Advent Calendar. You can read day 21 here.
In What Way Will Google+ Affect SEO?
We’re almost at the end of our SEO Advent Calendar and we thought it apt to dedicate a post to a potentially mighty force that has edged its way into our lives of late Google+.
What Does Google + Mean For Brands and SEO?
Well, aside from the ubiquitous Stream feature, Google+ has some unique features – so let us explore a few and speculate on their possible impact on SEO.
Arguably the most important thing to note is the +1 button. As we know from the much publicised Wired interview the +1 button is being used as an influencing signal for search results.
How can I incite people to +1 and follow our page?
- Make use of your brands current social profiles to promote your brands new Google+ page i.e. Facebook, Twitter etc.
- Have a strong call to action, one that’s actually going to entice users to add your brand to their Circles, as brands are unable to add ‘people’ profiles to their circles
- Get the Google+ badge and go crazy! Appropriately place the badge on your sites homepage and articles, your company blog and even email! It’s all about getting followers.
As well as growing your audience, this button allows your brand page to be searched via Google+ Direct Connect.
What is Google+ Direct Connect?
Yes, indeedy, this is a feature that allows users to search for brands Google+ pages directly, simply by putting + in front of the brand name.
So how do Circles fit into all this?
This feature allows users segregate their followers into specific Circles!
From a brand perspective, once you’ve amassed a decent following you can begin to further segment your followers into Circles just like Zen Bikes did below.
Circles can relate to interests, hobbies, location and so forth. This can result in the right content reaching the right people, at the right time. The more relevant the content is to a user or their friends, the more likely they are to share it.
And there’s more – Google Hangouts!
Hangouts have been dubbed the killer feature of Google + due to its capability to host a video chat with up to 9 users simultaneously and it also gives brands the opportunity to compliment content that is being amplified at any given time! Think question and answer sessions, product demonstrations, sponsored Hangouts and more the possibilites are endless!
We have one final feature to review – the Ripple functionality, which allows you to observe how users have interacted with your brands post. For example, who they have shared it with and the manner in which they shared it.
Through time this feature could enable the identification of key influencers within Circles, of which connections can be made and content shared.
There’s no real way of knowing the true impact Google+ will have on SEO, however it’s always advisable to be proactive, helping you stay one step ahead of the competition!
Managing your Circles, providing quality content on a regular basis, all help aid the number of people +1’ing your content. All in all, this has to be a good thing with the amount of exposure Google is likely to give to its social network within the results pages.