It may seem challenging to learn a new platform but Google Plus is essential for your online profile. Learning to harness the power of the platform is paramount to achieving long-term success for your business.
People often misunderstand how Google Plus works. They may point to the relatively low number of users on G+ (compared with Facebook and Twitter) or simply feel that it is extra work they can do without. These people fail to understand the nature of Google+ and how it can massively improve your SEO results regardless of whether your clients and customers use it or not.
If you have not set up a Google Plus profile yet, these ten reasons will hopefully encourage you to do so today.
1. Google will treat your content like any other page on the web. Google will quickly index your content, it will gain page rank and it will show up in search results.
2. Your Google Plus content will capture real estate on Google search result pages gaining more exposure for your business.
3. Google Plus content gains page rank, gives page rank and stays in search results for a long time. Some G+ posts that are over a year old hold a number one position in search results. Compare this with the 14 minutes an average tweet is estimated to hold.
4. Google Plus authorship provides your website a higher visual profile in search results resulting in a higher click through rate.
Authorship can be set up very easily by linking to your website on your profile page (in the “Contributor to” section) and inserting the following code in to the head of your website:
<link rel="author" href="https://plus.google.com/YourGoogleAccountID"/>
For more information on Google Authorship, have a look at this post.
5. Authorship is closely linked with content authority. If you produce some interesting content related to your business and it receives plus ones or is shared, this will lead to higher authority. Google wants to reward authoritative content so your search ranking will improve. Mark Traphagen argues that “over a broad sample of bloggers with G+ profiles, those who use Google authorship tend to average a full Page Rank higher than those who do not.”
6. Google Plus authorship and the Google Plus social layer provide a number of social signals that can improve your SEO. If your content is shared, especially by people with high authority, this authority will be passed on to you.
7. Social signals are becoming increasingly important in search results and will continue to be so in the future. Google is founded on the principle of giving the user what he wants so social signals will help to filter out the noise and provide better search results.
8. The featured link of a G+ post passes authority to the website to which it links. By linking to your website in this way you are increasing the relevancy of your website content which will help your search rankings.
9. The links section on your “About” page should be optimised for search results. The “Other Profiles” section passes no page rank authority and should be for your other social media properties. The “Contributor To” section also does not pass any page rank authority but you should link your website here for Google authorship (see points 4 and 5). The “Links” section, however, does pass page rank authority. Your website should be linked to in this section.[UPDATE] It would appear that since I originally wrote this article Google have made all the links on Google Plus profiles “nofollow”. Ah well, it was good while it lasted. You should, however, still optimise your profile as described.
10. Finally, #hashtags link topics to certain searches. Correct use of hashtags can greatly improve your search results.
If you are not using Google Plus (or not using it effectively) you are simply losing out. Hopefully this post will make you reconsider your position when it comes to social media and SEO strategies.
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Written by Paul Leck Davidson