In the competitive world of Social Media, Google+ has moved ahead of Twitter as the 2nd largest social network, behind Facebook.
Wow, you might say. How much time do you spend on Google+? That’s what I thought, not much. Is that bad?
Well, let’s break down those numbers a bit. The study looked at total number of active users. Back in October, Mark Zuckerberg of Facebook claimed that his platform had reached 1 billion active users. You can see his post on his Facebook timeline announcing that milestone right here.
Meanwhile, Google+ has inched up to what they claim is 343 million active users. Here’s the catch. Have you noticed how when you log in to your Gmail account that you are logged in to Google+? How about when you log in to your YouTube channel? Yup, you’re logged in to Google+. Want to write a review? You guessed it, Google+. So what we are really seeing here is inflated numbers due to “forced registry” when you want to do other things in the Google franchise.
Right now you are probably saying, “Who cares, Jim.”
You might be right. Google seems to be flaunting these numbers to act like the big player in social networking that they wanted to be, however, the actual users for “social networking” is probably much smaller.
But—we do have to care, not because of the number of people that have “signed up” for some Google service. As we have talked about before in this column, Google+ is the king of the hill for search.
Google gives preference to posts in its own platform (+) when ranking things for its search engine. If you want to get your brand, your name, your book—whatever—ranked higher, you need to be posting to Google+.
The one thing the study does show, when it comes to social networking, Facebook is far ahead of the crowd.
What’s your take on Google+? Do you find yourself regularly posting on that platform? Do you use it as an actual relationship building tool?
A version of this post by Jim Devitt appeared in Indies Unlimited in February 2013