Since the debut of Google+ business pages just over a month ago, the following discourse has repeated itself in the inbound marketing world:
Question: "Why should my business have a Google+ account in addition to all the other social networks we're currently present on?"
Answer: "Well, it's Google, so you can bet they'll be integrating these brand pages into organic search results."
Now you can literally stop betting on it! Finally, Google is amalgamating Google+ updates into its search engine results in two ways:
1. Brand Page Updates in Organic Search Results
When searching for a certain keyword or phrase, status updates are now appearing from actual brand pages. For example, when searching 'HubSpot brand,' a photo upload on the HubSpot Google+ account from November resulted on the very first page.
Marketing Takeaway: This is huge, and it makes a big case for why your brand should create a Google+ business page and start sharing content there ASAP. If you already do, be sure to optimize your status updates. While your updates should be unique, interesting, and have a clear voice reflective of your brand, they should also be search engine optimized. Just as you include certain keywords in your blog posts to help them rank well in Google without taking away from the overall quality of the post, you should do the same for status updates on Google+. This will help you leverage your Google+ presence to increase traffic to your site from Google search, and well, will help you get found online!
2. Personal Page Updates in Organic Search Results
While company page updates are appearing in results, so are posts from other users (via their personal accounts) as they mention a brand and/or search term. For example, upon searching 'Marketing Grader,' a status update from HubSpot CTO Dharmesh Shah's personal Google+ page is displayed as a result.
Marketing Takeaway:Create valuable content to share via your Google+ business page that other people will be inclined to share. When a user shares a piece of content straight from a brand page by clicking the 'share' button under the post, the original text of that post is transferred over, as well as the commentary the user provides. This means that by creating valuable and optimized content, people who share a status because of its value will unknowingly help your ranking because of the keywords weaved into the original update. Pretty nifty, huh?
What do you think of this Google+ integration? Can you think of any additional ways to take advantage of this?