NOTE: Google+ is no longer active. To find some alternatives to Google+, visit this guide.
If you thought that Google+ would eventually fail like other attempts by Google to enter the social media world, think again. Google has integrated Google+ into their environment in many ways, changing the way marketers must think about search and social media marketing.
The following resources will help you understand how Google+ is now integrated into search and other products, and how you can start adjusting your online marketing strategy for Search Plus Your World.
Search Plus Your World Official Resources
- Search Plus Your World Announcement – The official announcement of Google Search Plus Your World on the Official Google Blog.
- Search Plus Your World on YouTube – The official video introduction of Search Plus Your World by Google.
- Inside Search – Search Plus Your World – The official page on Google Inside Search about what you’ll find with Search Plus Your World. Be sure to read through for:
- Personal Results – With a single Google search, you can see regular search results, along with all sorts of results that are tailored to you — pages shared with you by your friends, Google+ posts from people you know, and content that’s only visible to you (like private photos from Google+ and Picasa albums).
- Visibility of Personal Results – To learn about the visibility of the content in your personal results, you can look at the link that appears beside each result, or for photo results, hover over the photo. Personal results may be marked as Public, Limited or Only you.
- Details About Your Personal Results – Your personal results are unique to you. This means that your private content and any content privately shared with you will not appear in the search results of others, unless this content has also been shared with them.
- People in Your Personal Results – If you have Google+ , your personal results will include content that has been shared by people in your circles. Regardless of whether you have Google+, your personal results show content that has been shared by suggested connections who have Google+ profiles.
- Profiles in Search – When you search for a person’s name on Google, you might see a link to a relevant Google profile in the list of autocomplete predictions. These profile links make it easier to find information about a particular person.
- Turn Off Personal Results – You can see what your results look like without personal content by clicking the globe button on the top right-hand side of your search results page. This setting is session-specific, meaning that if you close your browser, personal results may appear next time you search. You can also turn off personal results in your search settings . This action is account-specific, meaning that personal results will remain disabled as long as you’re signed in to your Google Account .
- Related People and Pages – Want to appear in the People and Pages on Google+ related to a search query in search results (shown in the images at the beginning of the post)? Find out how on this page in Google Inside Search.
Google+ Social Integration with Other Google Products
- Search Gets Better with Google+ – Learn how Google+ integrates with search, including profiles in search and related people / pages.
- Gmail Gets Better with Google+ – Learn how you can see emails from people in your circles, share photos instead of download them, and see what people are saying on Google+ when you open their emails.
- YouTube Gets Better with Google+ – Learn how you can watch videos on YouTube with friends, see what videos friends are sharing, find new videos on Google+, and share with the right people.
- Maps Gets Better with Google+ – Learn how to send directions to the right people.
- Blogger Gets Better with Google+ – Learn how to expand your audience and see which Blogger posts are most popular.
- Earth Gets Better with Google+ – Learn how to virtually explore the world and share your discoveries on Google+.
Opinions About Search Plus Your World
- Sharing a Search Story – Google’s own Matt Cutts expresses his view of Search Plus Your World with some personal examples. He also says it will pull information from other sources than Google+, including Quora, FriendFeed, LiveJournal, Twitter, and WordPress.
- Google’s Results Get More Personal With “Search Plus Your World” – Search Engine Land takes a look at the personal items in search results which even includes content shared on Google+ to a limited audience.
- Google “Search Plus Your World”: Twitter Not Happy – Twitter’s feelings about Google Search Plus Your World (and Google’s response).
- Why Google’s New Social Search Features Will Make You Dumber – A look at how limiting your search results to those you know could be harmful for your brain.
- They Did It: Google Personalizes Search & It Is Not Evil – Why the toggle switch to turn off personalized results makes it ok.
- Google, Please Keep Social Out of Our Search Results – How this change creates the “filter bubble” effect and why personalization doesn’t equal social.
- Google’s Search Plus Your World? – Not in My World! – Vertical Measures shares thoughts on the activity of Google+ vs. other social networks, impact on SEO, and importance of content.
- Understanding Search Plus Your World – After an explanation of the basics, this article covers the implications and whether it kills SEO.
- Google ‘Search Plus’ and Our Ever Decreasing Circles – How Search Plus is beneficial to Google, how useful the new results are, and whether it will be ultimately bad for users.
- FAQ: What’s The Debate About Google’s Search Plus Your World – Just digesting the new features is tough enough, much less trying to follow all the accusations and counter-accusations that were flying around. Here’s a guide designed to answer questions you might have.
- Evil or Not? Another View of Google’s New Social Search Moves – Critics said the move, which will apply to people who are signed into Google, is a gift to politicians or the Justice Department that might want to pursue an antitrust case against the search giant.
Search Plus Your World and SEO
- Google+ SEO – This comprehensive Google+ SEO guide covers every aspect and angle of Google+ and how it impacts search. The first section covers search within Google+, and the second covers Searcy Plus Your World (or Search+).
- What the Merging of Google+ and Google Search Means to SEO – How merging of Google+ data into SERPs will impact SEO, including why Google+ can’t be exploited and suggestions for approaching SEO in a Google+ world.
- What Google Personalized Search plus Your World Means for Marketing – SEO Tips – One of the key Google+ takeaways for marketers is that the more people who have added your personal or business Google+ page to their circles, the greater the likelihood that your content or activity will appear in their search results.
- How Google Search Plus Your World is Changing SEO – Now, SEO needs to be as conversational as it is contextually relevant, in order to be well represented in Google’s most recent algorithmic shifts. True to form, enterprise level SEO initiatives will have to play a game of catch-up this year in order to reap new opportunities from social search results.
- Rank for Anything You Want on Google Search Plus Your World – Right now, early Google+ brand page adopters and those who survived the Google+ business account shutdown can rank for pretty much anything they choose in the logged in searches of the people who have Circled them.
- Link Building in the Age of Google Search Plus Your World – The value of merit-based links will never die, and that’s for sure, as it’s still the best way to characterize and qualify credible pages over the web. At this stage of search, I believe that any link that generates traffic can and will still yield rankings, attract more natural linkers and grow a brand’s online presence.
- Google+ Will Build Your Search Traffic – Google Search Plus Your World builds organic search traffic, big-time. Say what you want about the evil-ness of the whole thing. It’s a huge opportunity, and you need to capitalize on it now.
- Google “Search Plus” Impact on Local: Limited So Far – Examples where the searcher toggles between personalized and general Google results. In a few cases you can see AdWords differences but the organic results appear to be almost identical. However the “personal results” (top of the page) are radically different. In some cases they’re very useful, in others completely irrelevant.
- How Google’s Social Search Shift Will Impact Your Brand’s SEO – What does a change this big mean for businesses that depend on their Google rank for traffic and sales? Personalized results are the default when users are logged into their Google account, so it will be harder to determine your rankings. It’ll also be harder for your customers to find you, and for you to get traffic from the same ranking because more often than not, Google+ results will be appearing before public listings.
Search Plus Your World and Social Media
- How Google’s “Search Plus Your World” Should Change Your Social Media Strategy – Whether you’ve fully worked Google Plus into your social media strategy, are still experimenting or have put off building out a G+ page until now, Search Plus Your World is a big, flashing sign from Google warning you to get on board – or suffer the consequences in oblivion.
- Google+ Optimization vs. Community Building: Pros & Cons of Google SPYW – While the addition of Google Search Plus Your World (SPYW) has made a big splash in the digital community, Google+ is far more useful (from a personal perspective) as a social network than it is as an augmentation of search on Google.com. With a Marketer’s hat on, of course it doesn’t matter what we think of G+ – the task is to figure out how to optimize opportunities to gain an advantage.
- Google+ Growing Your Social Network: Quantity vs. Quality – While growing your audience is important, pluses and likes for the sake of pluses and likes may have short term benefits, but they aren’t productive. To successfully build the network, there needs to be meaningful interactive engagements.
- How to Harmonize Google+ With Your Other Social Platforms – Search Plus has magnified the importance of blending your web marketing strategy so that it will adhere to the at once social, personal, and personalized search algorithm. Search Plus Your World doesn’t mean Social Minus Your Other Networks! Use your extended branding channels for specific purposes.
- Your Essential Guide to Google+ – If you haven’t gotten started on Google+ yet, this guide will help you set up your personal profile and your business page on Google+.
- Real-Life Examples Of How Google’s “Search Plus” Pushes Google+ Over Relevancy – Key takeaway: if you’re not on Google+, you’re not a suggestion.
Search Plus Your World and PPC
- 7 Changes Search plus Your World Brings to PPC – Search Plus Your World impacts PPC just as it impacts SEO. A look at brand bidding, coordination between earned & paid media, and more.
- How Does Google’s Search Plus Your World Impact AdWords and Other Forms of Online Marketing – Search Plus Your World affects AdWords users by increased competition, higher bidding on keywords, lower click through rate, and more.
- How To Social Proof Your Google AdWords Campaigns – Recently Google announced an innovation that could be the most significant change yet – the integration of Google Plus “+1’s” into Google AdWords. This new feature allows advertisers to use social proof to enhance their advertisements.
What are your thoughts on Google’s integration of search and social? Have you seen any impact in your rankings and organic / paid search traffic? Please share your thoughts in the comments. And if you are not a fan of personalized search results, don’t forget these alternative search engines!
About the Author: Kristi Hines is a freelance writer, professional blogger, and social media enthusiast. Her blog Kikolani focuses on blog marketing for personal, professional, and business bloggers.
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