Regardless of the size of your business, you’ve probably set up at least one social networking account for your brand. Facebook immediately comes to mind, as well as Twitter, Instagram and LinkedIn. You may even have Pinterest and YouTube accounts. And that’s awesome! Setting up key social media and networking platforms is your first step forward in the big wide world of online marketing.
But have you considered Google+? While some people might think of it as a defunct social media platform – and one which they have no idea how to use – the reality is that Google+ provides significant benefits in terms of keywords and search engine optimisation (SEO). Dedicating just a small amount of time to a business page on Google+ can increase local search visibility, particularly for small to medium-sized businesses.
Read on to find out why Google+ is worthy of a place in your social media plan this year, plus key tips for beginners using Google+.
Google loves it when we play on their team. Did you know that the content you post on your Google+ page can rank in search engine results even when your website may not? Since each post on Google+ has its own unique URL, when the content generates interaction, it is indexed immediately, and has the potential to show up in search results!
Shares or +1s (similar to the ‘like’ button on Facebook) of your Google+ content will also act like social recommendations and will influence what potential customers see in search engines.
Google+ Authorship tags connect a Google+ individual profile to a webpage or blog. This is a huge benefit if you’re looking to increase exposure of your personal brand, where you are the face of your business. For example, if you are a lawyer, doctor, realtor, or consultant, consider creating a Google+ profile and linking it to quality content online.
On the other hand, Google+ Publisher tags connect a local Google+ page to your website. Potential customers searching for your business name or other keywords may be greeted with a “Knowledge Graph” (see image) of information about your business taken from Google+. When implemented correctly, Google+ Publisher may show your visual branding, number of followers, recent Google+ posts and reviews.
Tip: Click on the links above for step-by-step guides on how to implement Google+ markup tags.
Another easy way to increase your exposure via Google+ is through integrating with other Google platforms such as YouTube and Gmail.
YouTube, processing over 3 billion searches per month, is the second largest search engine in the world. Creating a YouTube channel essentially means you have a Google account, and experts will tell you that it’s best to have all of your Google networks under the same account to increase trust, reliability and ease-of-use for your customers.
Tip: Ensure all of your Google accounts are under the same name and account, and link your content between them.
Quick tips for Google+ newbies
- Ensure you have a great looking profile with a high quality profile image and customised cover image
- Don’t forget to add the +1 button to your website and blog to increase your likes and shares!
- Optimise your Google+ posts with keywords and create headline “tags” by putting asterisks around your headline *like this*
- Post good quality content frequently and consistently and link from Google+ to your webpage and vice versa
- Also, #hashtags are a powerful tool!
At SGD, we love working with small to medium sized businesses and helping their brand thrive in the digital space. We also understand that it can become a bit overwhelming when trying to market your brand online. So if you have any questions about Google+ or other online marketing tools, please get in touch and we’ll be happy to help!