When it comes to social media, Facebook is usually the first thing that comes to mind, followed closely by Twitter, Instagram, Pinterest, and maybe LinkedIn. You probably don’t think of Google+, and that’s a shame. It turns out this platform has some great perks, especially if you’re a business, brand, or retailer. Wondering what Google+ can do for you? Allow us to explain.
Send the Right Message
When you create a Google+ page for your business, it serves as your public identity and a central place to share your expertise and knowledge. Google+ has approximately 300 million monthly active users, but the level of engagement isn’t all that high—on average, users spent about 7 minutes per month on the site. While 7 minutes might not seem like a lot, what they’re doing during that time can make or break your business. Searching for goods and services. Looking up business hours. Reading reviews. Google+ automatically creates a page for your company, but until you step in and take control, that page will look barren, empty, and closed for business—not exactly the message you want to send to potential customers and clients.
Improve Your SEO
Google+ is a Google product. Seems obvious, right? Something that might not be quite as clear is the fact that Google indexes Plus pages almost as soon as they’re published. It can also index more information, because data isn’t blocked or hidden within another social network, such as Facebook or Twitter. This means having an active and robust Google+ business page will help you rank higher in search results. In many cases, a business’s Google+ page will land higher than the business’s own website. And if Google knows where a user is located (and it usually does—Google knows pretty much everything) then it will tailor that person’s search results to reflect local businesses and companies. The more your business uses Google+, by posting content, adding photos, and making sure your information is up-to-date, the quicker you’ll connect to the right people.
Have Fun with Hangouts
One unique thing that Google+ offers is the ability to host a “Hangout.” These live video chats can be used to host private meetings or public webinars. Currently, up to ten people can actively participate in a Hangout, but many more can watch and listen, which means they’re a great way to launch new products or walk users through demonstrations and training tutorials. According to Gretchen Howard, global director of social solutions at Google, many different businesses are using Hangouts. “It’s technology,” she says, “but it’s not scary.” If you’re searching for a unique and creative way to increase engagement, “hanging out” with your audience is a great place to get started.
Nothing to Lose
Maybe you’re reading this and shaking your head. “I’m already on Twitter… and Facebook… and Instagram. Do I really need to start posting to Google+, too?”
No, you don’t. But if you’re already creating great content, don’t you want it to reach as many people as possible? Give Google+ a try and see if it makes a difference. We have a feeling you’ll be pleasantly surprised!