A few years back, if you were to say the word “Social Networking”, people automatically thought of the names Facebook and Twitter. These were the two main contenders in the social networking arena. However in late June of 2011, that quickly changed, as the search engine giant Google began stirring up the tech waters with the release of their new social networking platform, Google Plus.
However Google Plus isn’t just yet another social networking website, it’s a powerful tool that allows you to take advantage of SEO features that you can’t get with the other contenders. We’ll discuss what SEO is, and how Google Plus can be used to improve your search engine rankings.
Importance of SEO
If you use the internet even a little bit, there is a good chance you’ve heard of the phrase SEO at least once or twice. However what does it mean, and how does it affect you? Well if you’re a business owner or run a website of any kind, SEO is the bread and butter of directing traffic for search engines to your website.
The term SEO stands for Search Engine Optimisation. It’s the process of making sure search engines like Google and Bing (these are just two of the most popular), can properly navigate and index your web pages, in order to help improve your search engine rankings, as well as provide relevant information to those searching for things online.
How Google Plus Contributes
With Google Plus, personalisation is everything. When you post something new to your Google Plus account, the chances of people seeing your post goes up drastically. Not everyone is going to see your post, but it’s a good chance that anyone following you on there will. The more people who +1 (Similar to a Facebook Like) your post makes the chances rise even further. What’s even better, is that the more +1’s you get for an article, not only will the people that are following you see the post, but their followers will too.
No matter what you try to improve SEO with Google Plus, never forget “Content is King“. Make sure you post great content at all times. One thing that often goes unnoticed, is that when sharing content, the first sentence of your post is going to be the sentence that everyone sees for your Google Plus title tag. The title tags of your post are deeply connected with search engine rankings, and have a high impact on ones CTR (click through rates). Optimising your title tags makes it easier for you to quickly gain more traction and hits for your website.
In addition to everything else, one of the less utilised, yet very powerful features Google offers to help boost SEO, is a tool they like to call Google Authorship. If you’ve ever noticed when browsing the web, that some Google search results include a profile picture and byline of a blogger or author, then you’re indirectly familiar with Google Authorship.
Showing a profile picture is great, but it’s only the icing on the cake. The meat and potatoes of Google Authorship, is that it works to create verified connections between the content on the web, and that creators of that content. It essentially links Google profiles, to the content that users create. This nifty feature helps adds value to your search results.
This is great for SEO, because it allows Google to rank search results more accurately by value. Content creators that utilise Google Authorship are given an added advantage, because it allows Google to identify human-made quality content, from the rest of the post out there, boosting their rankings and likelihood of showing up higher on searches.
Ways to Improve SEO
There are many other factors that tie into improving search engine rankings, but we’ll just glance over them briefly right now. Search engines need to be able to crawl your website and index your content. In order to this, they scan the HTML of the pages they index. If your HTML is bad, or not properly marked up, it’s not doing you any favours. By writing better markup, and keeping with web standards, you make it easier for crawlers to do their job, improve your chances of getting more traffic to your website.
Search engines also look for certain keywords on your pages, that allow them to more accurately display results to people searching for things. When someone searches for something online, they type in phrases and keywords that the search engine recognises. I then scans it’s database of indexed websites and locates those websites which contain the search terms. By making sure your titles and keywords are relevant to what users search for, you instantly increase the likelihood of showing up for specific search terms.
There are other factors that attribute to improving SEO, but too many to go into for the scope of this article, you can find more resources at moz.
If you’re a business owner and have a website, or just a normal website owner, if you’re not taking advantage of Google Plus for SEO, you’re definitely missing out. Google Plus isn’t just a new social networking layer and platform, but provides many useful benefits that allow websites to drastically increase their search engine rankings. Here at ChillyBin WordPress Web Design Singapore, our web development and online marketing teams specialise in providing clients with expert SEO functionality and advice, ensuring their websites reach their potential. If you have a website that’s struggling with SEO, or you’d like us to get you up and running with Google Plus for your business, don’t hesitate to reach out to us!