Is it Worth it to Use Google+ Anymore?
The death of Google+ has been talked about for some time now, but rumors really starting swirling when Google dropped its mandatory Gmail integration requirement late last year. Google traditionally required users to register for a Google+ account when they signed up for Gmail and other services. If it’s no longer mandatory for people to have a Google+ account to use these services, then maybe the social channel really is dying.
Currently, Google+ has a passionate, focused user group. Photographers, for example, love the service. But Google+ has never become a mainstream alternative to Facebook, and it’s fallen further down the tunnel with the emergence of other social networks like Instagram and Pinterest. It’s possible that Google+ is dying, but the question to ask today is if Google+ is dying for your business.
It’s Still Alive
For the majority of businesses, Google+ is still alive and continues to offer the benefits of better search rankings and increased visibility. Shares and +1s from your Google posts act as social recommendations that users see when they’re logged in. (Just be sure to add the +1 button to your content.) Plus, your status updates are indexed immediately into the search results, increasing visibility. So if nothing else, Google+ is still worthwhile for SEO purposes.
Additionally, Google+ is used for customer reviews, which show up when people search for your business on Google. The more positive reviews your company has, the better. Users count on these reviews to help them make informed decisions, and positive reviews give your business the edge over other local companies. Google+ isn’t the only platform for reviews; sites like Yelp, FourSquare and Customer Lobby also count, so encourage customers to post on all these sites.
It’s Still Big
And while Google+ pales in comparison to Facebook, so do most other social networks. The social channel still clocks in over 500 million monthly active users each month – no small number. Also, it’s beneficial to look at the positives to Google+ and what it can do for your business since it could emerge into something entirely different one day. If it does, you’ll appreciate having a spot on the social network with an existing following and active profile.
Should You Use It?
Although Google+ may still be alive and well for your business, you do need to prioritize when it comes to your social media marketing strategy. Google+ may not be the best channel for your business, and with the recent changes of allowing users to access Google services without having a Google account, it’s likely that we’ll see followers drop. Google+ probably doesn’t require nearly as much attention as Facebook or Twitter, but it’s still a good idea to utilize it for the benefits it does offer: simple posting and an improvement in search rankings.