Google+ Local has been difficult for many small and medium sized businesses. Some of these businesses have created a Google+ page yet they already had a Google+ Local business page. Others issues include YouTube Hangouts on Air videos and dealing with local reviews. These are challenges that most small business owners do not have the time to address. Add to that the attempt to post, update, comment and engage with a Google+ business page and we are talking about a full time job. Fortunately, there is help available. If you are struggling to maintain your Google+ presence please feel free to reach out to me at firstname.lastname@example.org and we can discuss ways to make it much easier.
Google+ is a Steep Learning Curve
Time and again clients and business owners express the steep learning curve of Google+. It is a much different type of social layer than Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest or Instagram. Google has to maintain the reputability of search therefore they do not let some types of actions and content “slide” much in the way that Twitter and Facebook do. Spamming links is the death nail for almost any business on Google+. Self promoting links has proven not to work. The fact that Hootsuite and other scheduling programs do not mesh well with Google+ causes difficulty when attempting to build an audience and get new customers online.
Creating posting strategies, understanding communities, hosting live Hangouts on Air via YouTube and engaging with other Google+ users will help a brand tremendously. That said, it is not easy. More importantly, it takes time. The time commitment pays off tremendously as YouTube videos, communities and Google+ posts show up in search. All of these resources allow businesses to reach a broad audience and receive natural link backs which is the new SEO.
Once a small business learns how to leverage Google+ they have a competitive advantage over almost all their competitors. Every little action that is taken on Google+ is an action that Google sees. Whether or not this helps with Google search has yet to be determined, but one thing is for certain – it cannot hurt. It has also been proven that Google+ posts, communities and Hangouts on Air show up in search.
Finding Time for Google+
There are some amazing social media posting programs and tools to help auto post to Facebook and Twitter. Hootsuite, Sprout Social and others have made a pretty penny off allowing businesses to set their social media on auto pilot. That cannot be done on Google+ as the 3rd party APIs are still being developed. This means a human being must go in and physically post content to Google+. Once again, takes a lot of time. When posting directly to Google+ many businesses make the mistake of self promotion through the posting of links. Experienced Google+ users agree this is going to make it quick difficult to build an audience and get business. There is nothing wrong with promoting a business but there is a strategy to it.
I have worked with several small to medium sized businesses as a consultant and as a social media manager. These businesses have experienced tremendous increases in online exposure. Their YouTube Hangout on Air videos are indexed and rank well in search. Their Google+ communities gain new community members every single day. Their Google+ posts are receiving more +1s and comments as their profile expands. This is all part of the process of becoming an authority in a specific industry. If you hope to gain an advantage over your competition by being an early adopter to Google+ I would suggest getting started now. Please feel free to reach out to me at email@example.com and we can discuss how I can be of assistance.
Google+ Business Success Story
Over the past year I have worked with many small businesses as it relates to search and social media. Google+ has been a hot topic as almost all clients contact me in hopes of gaining much more exposure on Google+. Whether or not +1s, reshares and comments help with Google search has yet to be determined. It makes logical sense that Google would digest this information and weigh it appropriately. One of the clients that has pushed Google+ very hard is the Law Offices of David Azizi. Below please find a screenshot of one of their December 2013 posts:
As you can see, this Law Firm has built quite the presence on Google+. The account has 428 people that have circled them and they receive over 10 +1s on almost every post. This particular post received almost 900 +1s. With only 428 followers this is a remarkable number. This is not that uncommon for the account. In the last two weeks I have seen three posts accumulate over 100 +1s and 20 reshares. This is exposure that is only going to help the Law Offices of David Azizi in the long run.
Time and again businesses try to build a presence on Google+ and they cannot get engagement. Some businesses are smart enough to seek help and others simply leave and go to other social networks. If you are hoping to rank in Google search I do not think there is an argument that Google+ is the best social network to use. If you are greatly struggling to get +1s, shares and comments on Google+ please reach out to me at firstname.lastname@example.org and we will discuss how I can help you with your business.
There should always been an end goal in mind for every online interaction. I work very well with clients that have a strong desire to rank in search. Google+ is part of Google so it stands to reason that, in the long run, a strong Google+ presence would only help. There are many strategies that I have incorporated. Some have worked and many have not. That said, I now have 535,000 Google+ followers so the success rate is much higher than the failure rate. Contact me today if you need assistance.
Google Plus Local Business Page Views Update
In late March 2014 Google changed the overall look of a Google Plus Local business page. Instead of showing total +1s the profile now shows total views. From the information we have these views have accumulated since October of 2012. While this is not the be all, end all in terms of Internet Marketing most of the successful Internet Marketers out there know that perception is reality online. If one dentist has 600,000 page views while another only has 25,000 views who do you think the searcher will click on to get that cavity filled?
Fortunately, there are several packages I offer that help businesses increase total views and exposure on Google Plus. If you are looking to expand your Internet presence to Google Plus and other social networks that actually affect search results please feel free to contact me at email@example.com. I have worked with several businesses that have well over one million page views. Once again, this is not everything but it definitely helps in terms of brand exposure. Even if you have a very tight niche business there are plenty of opportunities to share valuable content on Google Plus. The fact that Google Plus is still so new means that local businesses have a chance to truly make a name for themselves before the social platform gets very large.