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Google Plus 1 (Google + 1) – Leverage the Power of Social Media

First came the Facebook Share button, then the Twitter tweet / retweet and now the Google 1, also called Google Plus 1 or Google + 1.  And since Google has over 60% share in search engine market, it must be a no brainer to implement this button on your website or blog correct?

It may be, but it may be too early to tell.  Although Google rules Cyberspace, it is run by humans like you and I who make not so optimal decisions at times. For example, some time back Google implemented a voting mechanism to their search listings, referred to as the “voting” button.

Searchers could vote sites similar to the concept of Digging or Stumbling Upon. Where is that function now? Nowhere, no one cared for it and it did not “Stick”.

But let’s look at Google 1 in a bit more detail and see whether this concept will stick.  It’s certainly too relevant (in my opinion) to ignore so early and easily.

What is Google + 1?

Google + 1 is Google’s attempt to jump into the social media limelight with Facebook and Twitter. Market share leaders don’t lag for long, so as recently as last week the giant announced the Google 1 functionality. Thanks to “Extreme John” who commented on my guest post on Yaro’s blog, I was first introduced to Google 1 just a few days back.

So what did I do? I jumped on the bandwagon like a rock star.  Here is the kicker that got me over the hump to do so: Google came out and said that the plus one button will have an SEO impact!

No joke, they did. How much? They didn’t say, and I don’t have a clue. If I were to guess I’d say none, or very little at best, but I have been wrong before.

You can read more about Google 1 here.

Why You Should Add the Google Plus One Button?

1) Let’s see.  Google has 60% search engine market share, which I think will increase in the near future.

2) The Google + 1 is super easy to use.

3) More than anything else, if you are playing in the online space, then you should jump into the bandwagon even if it is just for the sake of jumping in.  Gotta keep up with the trend right?

What do you have to lose but two minutes of your time?  The button is not too big or invasive in my opinion, and can be positioned wherever you want on your blog.  But why do you even need all these reasons and justifications?

If there is a God in cyberspace today, it is Google, often cursed by many because of their unprecedented dominance in the search engine space.  So why ignore such a beast?

I am not saying you will be flooded with traffic overnight just by implementing the Google +1 button, but why not?  It’s an experiment the G-man is running to stay on level with Facebook and Twiiter in the social media space, and you never know what the experiment might turn into and what it can do from a search engine optimization perspective.

If you are running a WordPress blog, you can install the Google Plus One Button using this plugin.

Why Google Plus One Might Tank?

Leaving my biases aside for the next two paragraphs, let me present the other side of the equation. Two reasons immediately pop in mind for why Google 1 may not work.

First, in order to use the +1 button, you need a Google profile that is public. That means everyone gets to see who recommended or plus “oned” that particular website or blog. While this might be a good thing in many cases, in some cases it isn’t as many others want to maintain their anonymity online.

The other thing is that there is no incentive to plus one anything. Why would you? Unlike Facebook and Twitter, which propel people in the limelight amongst their friend’s circles and make them feel important, what does “plus-ing one” do for the “plusser”?

There may be some incentive down the road but right now I don’t see it. Google’s social media presence just isn’t as glamorous as Facebook and Twitter.  I am sure I am missing other reasons.  Can you think of any more?

Concluding Thoughts

As if you need another button on your website.  Pretty soon websites will have more buttons to distract readers than content, and that’s certainly not the ideal scenario.

Whether Google 1 sticks and stays around is to be determined, but like I said the concept is too relevant to ignore this early in my opinion. For something that takes less than two minutes to install and activate, I think it’s an action worth taking and sitting on to see what comes out of it, no?

I have implemented the Google 1 button as you can see on the top of this blog post near my Facebook and Twitter buttons.

What do you think of Google + 1? Have you implemented it? Are you going to? Why or why not?

Update: Google One is now part of my scrolling social bookmark bar to the side of my blog

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4 Responses to “Google Plus 1 (Google + 1) – Leverage the Power of Social Media”

  1. Sandip says:

    Hi Sunil, I agree with your thoughts – another button to add to all the other sharing buttons we’ve already got. Furthermore, I think this will only confuse those that aren’t social media / tech geeks. I think if you have a tech audience it could be quite valuable. But for many other niches it will just add clutter.

    I share posts on my social networks that I want my friends to read so that we can talk about the subject. Theres no incentive for me to +1 articles and if it takes longer than 2 seconds I will not do it. That said, I will add the button across my sites as I dont wan’t to lose out if this does take off. But in my opinion, that’s unlikely.

  2. Melissa says:

    Thanks for the explanation, Sunil. I have been seeing this button on many blogs, but I didn’t know what it was. Now that I do, I will probably add it to my site.

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