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How to Get More Traffic with Google Plus

Updated on June 10, 2013

Google+ is today the 2nd largest social network in the world. Due to Google's revised search engine algorithm after launching Google+ in mid-2011, it is now no longer possible for a hub, blog, or website to drive massive traffic from Google Search, without participating in Google+, according to many experts.

Google+ is a social networking and identity service that was launched by Google in June 2011. It is a seamless integration of various Google services, such as Gmail, Google +1, Google Profiles, Google Buzz, and Google Talk, as well as new features such as Circles, Sparks, Hangouts, and Huddles. Because of this integration, there is no need to create a dedicated Google+ account. Google's ability to leverage on its existing services has made Google+ the 2nd largest social network in the world today. With over 500 million registered users (235 million of whom are active in any one month), it surpassed Twitter in January 2013.

After Google+ was launched, Google changed its search engine algorithm, such that It is no longer possible for a blog or website to drive massive traffic from Google Search, without participating in Google+. Google has about 62% of the search engine market share, worldwide, in mid-2013, while Bing, at 2nd place, has 9%, and Yahoo, roughly 5%. Isn't this reason enough for you to learn how to use Google+ to your best advantage? The more attention and authority you have and the larger your Google+ network, the more traffic you will receive.

Below are some pointers on how you can make Google+ work for you, if you are a hubber, a blogger, or a webmaster.

Set up a great profile

As with all social networks such as Facebook, make sure you set up your profile. Users are more likely to link up to you, if they know something about you that they like, e.g. a common hobby. An eye-tracking study commissioned by Mashable showed that Pinterest users tend to respond better to images of faces, so make sure that you use a headshot of yourself in your Profile.

If you are in business, ensure that you use appropriate keywords in your profile to describe your product or service, and create clickable links to your official websites or blogs. In other words, add your website to your profile. If you make your best keywords clickable, Google will rate them higher.

In theory, the value of a link from Google+ is like any other, i.e. it depends on the authority of both the page and the domain. If you get more people to engage with you, or link directly to your profile, your profile links will become more valuable, due to your increased visibility.

Source

Build a Google+ network

Add as many friends as you can from your other social networks, so that you do not have to start from scratch. Google+ has a feature to link to Yahoo! and Hotmail. However, it cannot invite Facebook contacts, as Facebook views Google+ as a direct competitor. Nonetheless, as Facebook allows its users to download their data, there is a workaround. (However, the format is not easy to import into Google+.)

Also, look out for influencers and add them into your Circles because whenever they 'like' any of your posts, it will spread to their own circles. Circles allow you to choose who you want to share your posting contents with. By default, Google+ create the following circles for you:

  • Friends;
  • Family;
  • Acquaintance;
  • Following.

You can also create new Circles, e.g. if you are a hubber/blogger, writing primarily on travel, say, you can create a circle called "Travel" and then put all those contacts whom you think would be interested in topics on tourist attractions under this Circle. If you have several blogs/businesses, or if you write on a wide variety of topics, you can create many specialized Circles. A contact can be put in 2 or more Circles.

Just like you have "Groups" in Facebook, so also are there "Communities" in Google+. "Communities" are one of the best place to interact with like-minded users who share a common interest. You can also create your own "Communities" in Google+, just like you can create your own Facebook "Group".

Social Networking Success offers 10 great ways to get people to join you. Needless to say, you must always give people a reason to want to be in your Circle. This means that you must fill your page with posts, before you can start to approach anyone to join your Circles.

What is Google+ and Why Should Small Businesses Get Involved?

Share content and information

Share your hubs or articles on Google+. Just as with Pinterest, you don't necessarily have to use your own unique content all the time. When you share content that others have written, other people are more likely to share yours, too.

Work hard at populating your page with new and interesting posts every single day. It is very much like blogging, if you really want to encourage others to join your Circles. You will start losing followers, If you are inactive for a period of time.

Post at the right time. The best time to post is between 10:00 am - 2:00 pm on weekdays. Determine what your targeted traffic is and post accordingly, based on their time zone and not yours.

Your first sentence in Google+ is always given more weight when it comes to Google search. This is because this sentence becomes part of the title tag, Always, therefore, include your best keywords in the first sentence of your post. By so doing, you can easily make Google+ posts work for you to improve your position in Google Search.

Unlike many other sites, such as Twitter, you can edit your Google+ post, whenever you like. Use this feature, whenever you see that your post is not getting as much attention from Google Search as you had wished. You can also edit your post to incorporate the latest updates.

Google+ also has a hashtag feature to help you organize your post and also find posts by other users that also use them. An example of a hashtag is: #googleplustips. A Google+ hashtag actually serves the same function as tags used in blogs.

Google takes a while to notice a new blog or a page on your website. But if you share your new blog posts on Google+, Google will “indexed” them much more quickly. Sharing your hub or blog posts on Google+ is also a quick way to get them noticed and placed at the top of the Google search results.

How to set up a Google Plus page

10 ways to build the audience for your Google+ Page

Create Google+ Page

Just like in Facebook where you can create a Page, you can also create Google+ Page. What then is Google+ Page, and how is it different from your Google+ Profile Page? Put simply, unlike your profile page, a Google+ Page is not a person. It acts like a blog where you can put related contents together and add new contents, as and when you like. And the best part is that, like Facebook, you can create any number of Google+ Page, with each page catering to a specific purpose and a specific target audience.

Link your Google+ page to your own website and get more recommendations for your website in Google Search. Google+ offers 2 slightly different versions of its badge for pages and profiles, as the two are different:

  • Google+ profiles: This badge allows people to find you easily on Google+ and add you to a Circle directly from your website.
  • Google+ Page: This badge has additional functionality, apart from the above features. They help Google consolidate +1's from your website and your Google+ page, making your website eligible for Google+ Direct Connect.

For more information on how to to set up a Google+ Page, and then to promote it, read Martin Shervington's Complete User Guide: Google Plus Pages for business and brands.

Use Google+ to establish authorship

Many people are confused between Authorship markup and Author Rank. They are not the same thing. Authorship markup merely display authorship information in search results for the content you create. Why then is authorship important? While, by itself, it does not help you rank higher (you still need to create great content), Authorship can help you stand out in search.

With Authorship markup, you can also beat plagiarism, since your hub or article will be pushed to the top of the search results over content scrapers.

Copyblogger features an article: "10 Reasons Writers Should Claim Their Google Authorship Markup".

You can establishing authorship of your hubs or articles by signing up for Authorship at this Google page. When you sign up, an email will be sent to you and you will be asked to upload a profile with a recognizable headshot. To be eligible, you will need to have a decent headshot on your Google+ Profile.

Google Plus / Google+ Tutorial for Beginners 2012

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    • Paul Kuehn profile image

      Paul Richard Kuehn 4 years ago from Udorn City, Thailand

      Walter,

      Thanks for posting in this hub such a wealth of good information about Google-Plus. I have bookmarked this for ready reference and will really pay attention to the excellent videos you have on this hub. Voted up and sharing with followers.

    • WalterPoon profile image
      Author

      Poon Poi Ming 4 years ago from Malaysia

      Hi Paul, thanks for dropping by. I'm glad you like it!

    • Jared Miles profile image

      Jared Miles 4 years ago from Australia

      A pleasure to read Walter, and something I was able to learn a lot from. While I have a Google+ account, I've never really used it, and your Hub has made me reconsider its usefulness, thank you.

    • WalterPoon profile image
      Author

      Poon Poi Ming 4 years ago from Malaysia

      Jared, I have a Google+ account, too, that I also didn't bother to use. After crazyhorsesghost talks about Pinterest, I decided to take a look at Google+. And what a surprise, when I hear that it is now no longer possible for a hub, blog, or website to drive massive traffic from Google Search, without participating in Google+. All the experts seem to be saying the same thing about Panda, Google's latest search algorithm.

    • DonnaCSmith profile image

      Donna Campbell Smith 4 years ago from Central North Carolina

      Thanks for this info. It makes me realize I need to work on Google+ a whole lot more.

    • WalterPoon profile image
      Author

      Poon Poi Ming 4 years ago from Malaysia

      Donna, we all do! LOL. HubPages was hit hard by Panda, and so also were many other major collaborative websites. This is why HubPages is now quite strict with the hub quality.

    • mickal779 profile image

      Kashif 4 years ago from Berlin

      nice this one great

    • mary615 profile image

      Mary Hyatt 4 years ago from Florida

      Great info here! I am just beginning to utilize Google+. I like the idea of preventing thieves from stealing your work. I have to work on that part. I spent a couple of hours last week trying to learn Google+, but this Hub has helped me a lot.

      Voted UP and shared.

    • WalterPoon profile image
      Author

      Poon Poi Ming 4 years ago from Malaysia

      Mary615, did I miss anything very critical that you feel should be included in this hub? There's just too much to learn about Google+ and I want to cover the most important points to get all of us started. As we work on Google+, we will definitely discover the finer points and new tricks that will make the big difference.

    • Gcrhoads64 profile image

      Gable Rhoads 4 years ago from North Dakota

      Isn't it ironic that there is no Google+ button on HubPages? Very informative article. ++

    • livingsta profile image

      livingsta 4 years ago from United Kingdom

      Interesting and useful information here. Thank you for sharing this with us. Voted up, useful and sharing!

    • WalterPoon profile image
      Author

      Poon Poi Ming 4 years ago from Malaysia

      Gcrhoads64, you are right. We should suggest it in the forum at "New HubPages Feature Suggestions". I don't mind suggesting it but since this is your idea, would you like to do it? And thanks, Livingsta, for voting up.

    • CharronsChatter profile image

      Karen Robiscoe 4 years ago from California

      haHA--sharing to FB AND Google Plus!! Getting around it--but I wanted to be sure to have this available for easy reference. It looks as if you covered all the bases...and then some! Very informative. Very...er...USEFUL and INTERESTING, too. :)

    • WalterPoon profile image
      Author

      Poon Poi Ming 4 years ago from Malaysia

      CharronsChatter, sounds like a lot of hard work, right? But as they say, success in the internet is 20% production and 80% marketing. You forgot about Pinterest (read crazyhorsesghost's post in the forum, entitled "10 Million Plus Views, Wow What A Journey"). I wrote a hub on that too. Pinterest... pinning requires less effort and potentially more traffic. But Google+ is a must these days (after Panda), if you want to continue receiving traffic from Google Search.

    • lesliebyars profile image

      Buster Johnson 4 years ago from Alabama

      They used to have a Google Plus button on HUBPAGES.

    • WalterPoon profile image
      Author

      Poon Poi Ming 4 years ago from Malaysia

      Lesliebyars, I wonder why HubPages took it away... since Google Search favors Google+ for obvious reasons, it would be very helpful to every hubber if they put the button back. Would you like to ask in the forum, or else I will ask? I suspect it's because they don't want low quality hubs to be put on Google, as Google's new Panda search algorithm has hurt HubPages' ranking and visibility a lot.

    • Jen888 profile image

      Jen888 4 years ago

      Thanks, Walter, I learnt something new & useful today!

    • WalterPoon profile image
      Author

      Poon Poi Ming 4 years ago from Malaysia

      Jen888, did you get my invite to join the HubPages community in Facebook? Bet the environment will motivate you to write. Everyone has a story to tell!

      Do follow Billybuc's hubs. He has many well-written hubs on how to write. I bet you will love the way he explains the art of writing in such simple English, and yet so impactful! I don't know if I can put his link here, so to be on the safe side, search for Billybuc and follow him. If you have any problem finding him, leave me a note in Facebook.

    • Ceres Schwarz profile image

      Ceres Schwarz 4 years ago

      Very useful hub about Google+. Looks like Google+ can really help you get lots of traffic. But it's too bad that you need a headshot to be part of this Google+. Wonder why this is necessary? And why it can't just be, like, what your HubPages profile picture is?

    • WalterPoon profile image
      Author

      Poon Poi Ming 4 years ago from Malaysia

      Ceres, cos they want authorship to be associated to real people. That's understandable enough, except that I don't look like Robert Redford, LOL.

    • Ceres Schwarz profile image

      Ceres Schwarz 4 years ago

      Yeah, that does make sense but I'd also think that there are some people that might not like to show their own pictures. Wouldn't having the HubPages profile and actually writing stuff regularly count as being a real person?

      Oh, by the way, is your Google profile name the same as your HubPages name? Can they be different? What will show up in the Google search results page then?

    • WalterPoon profile image
      Author

      Poon Poi Ming 4 years ago from Malaysia

      Ceres, I used my birth name in Google, but I prefer "Walter Poon". Now I am having problems because the name "Walter Poon" is taken up by someone in Facebook. What will show up in Google is your Google name.

      Do you have any idea how to solve my dilemma? The best hope I have is "WalterPoon88" or equivalent, but I am toying with "WalrusPoon", hahaha.

    • Ceres Schwarz profile image

      Ceres Schwarz 4 years ago

      Oh, that sounds real complicated. I guess you can just use those different alternatives that you mentioned. It does look like there's a lot of stuff to deal with regarding Google plus and Google profiles. Right now, I'm still undecided on whether to actually try this out or not. The traffic is a good thing but I don't know, the picture thing isn't really agreeing with me. Hope it works out for you and everyone else trying this out.

    • WalterPoon profile image
      Author

      Poon Poi Ming 4 years ago from Malaysia

      Ceres, put on a wig, wear eyelashes, do whatever... if you don't make use of Google+, you are shortchanging yourself in the long-run. As it is, 60% of all traffic to my websites come from Google Search. And the best part of it all is that I haven't even actively work on Google+. Guess what the traffic would have been if I had done all the above!

    • zeff999 profile image

      Steven Lambert 4 years ago from Rutland

      Hi, I really liked you article. And have updated my Google+ site. The other person mentioned that Hub took it off as the Panda search nocked it down. But Google+ will take over from facebook (which had run it’s course) and they will be looking towards Youtube as the future. Steve.

    • WalterPoon profile image
      Author

      Poon Poi Ming 4 years ago from Malaysia

      Zeff999, have you read "10 Million Plus Views, Wow What A Journey"?

      http://hubpages.com/forum/topic/112154

    • zeff999 profile image

      Steven Lambert 4 years ago from Rutland

      I think quality pays off, when writing a good article. But you have to get people to read them. Steve

    • WalterPoon profile image
      Author

      Poon Poi Ming 4 years ago from Malaysia

      "If a man has good corn or wood, or boards, or pigs, to sell, or can make better chairs or knives, crucibles or church organs, than anybody else, you will find a broad hard-beaten road to his house, though it be in the woods", says Ralph Waldo Emerson.

      Emerson's quote has often been paraphrased as: "Build a better mousetrap, and the world will beat a path to your door", also known as the mousetrap fallacy in marketing theory.

      It is true that a high quality hub is very important, but it is not in itself sufficient to succeed online, if you want to make money. Online experts have always said, "Quality is only 20%, you must spend 80% of your time on marketing". Even as I know this, I must admit that I am not multi-skilled, nor do I love marketing. I like writing more than anything else, so if I don't make much money, I know why, and I don't blame anyone except myself.

      Of course, everyone wants money. To say otherwise is pure hypocrisy. But I only have 15 hubs so far... so my priority is to spend 80% of my time on writing more hubs at the moment. As I progress, I will slowly spend more and more time on marketing until I hit close to the magic figure 80%, i.e. spending 2 days to write a hub and the rest of the week on marketing. Once I see 50% of my traffic coming from organic search and 50% from social networking, I think I will have truly arrived.

    • zeff999 profile image

      Steven Lambert 4 years ago from Rutland

      Yes, I would rather write a really good hub that I care about, and ask people to comment on it, and ask how I could imporve it. Steve

    • WalterPoon profile image
      Author

      Poon Poi Ming 4 years ago from Malaysia

      Ceres Schwarz, I finally got round to putting my photo on profile!

    • Ceres Schwarz profile image

      Ceres Schwarz 4 years ago

      Hi WalterPoon, yeah, I just noticed. That's really great. I'm still undecided on this Google+ thing. I think I'll just put it off for now. By the way, I thought you only needed to put your headshot photo in Google+. Did you also have to put it in your HubPages profile? Is there going to be a problem if your profile pics from Google+ and HubPages are different?

    • WalterPoon profile image
      Author

      Poon Poi Ming 4 years ago from Malaysia

      Ceres, there shouldn't be a problem if all your photos are different. But as they say, if you use the same photo, you will acquire a sort of branding for yourself. When people see you in different social networks, they will recognize you instantly. Would McDonald's branding be effective, if it looks different across countries? Women have it easy... just put on a heavy makeup, wear a thick mascara, and presto! You know, my wife took more than 30 shots of me before I decided on this one! Just woke up and my face looks puffy, LOL.

    • zeff999 profile image

      Steven Lambert 4 years ago from Rutland

      I hate my photo, and for years used this daft pic from a horror film. It's my facebook profile. But I get no traffic from them or here. So I use my real face on Google+ and Youtube. Steve

    • WalterPoon profile image
      Author

      Poon Poi Ming 4 years ago from Malaysia

      Zeff999, the sooner we learn to accept our self, the better, right? Honestly, I don't like the present pix, but it's a good start because it satisfies Google+ requirement. I will take a better pix on another day, because I made the mistake of taking the pix just after I had just woke up, LOL.

    • Bedbugabscond profile image

      Melody Trent 4 years ago from United States

      I am going to apply for Google Authorship. Right now I am confused about the byline. My real name and pen name are different. I do see hubbers who have a pen name and get their picture shown in google authorship. I don't see a byline on their page. My hope is that since our icon leads to our profile, and mine has a real name, this will be enough for google. Do you know if I am on the right track?

    • WalterPoon profile image
      Author

      Poon Poi Ming 4 years ago from Malaysia

      Bedbugabscond, Google prefers real name but because Chinese names are hard for non-Chinese to remember (and so also are many non-English names), I wanted to use WalterPoon but "WalterPoon" is taken, so I am in a dilemma. Should I use "WalterPoon2" or something else? I haven't decided yet, that's why I cannot proceed.

    • Bedbugabscond profile image

      Melody Trent 4 years ago from United States

      Greekgeek is a hubber who has a pen name and her pictures show, in her listings her real name is under that. She doesn't add a byline to every article either. I dunno, I know Google authorship will be important with panda 2.o, but I won't have it by the time it hits! I will just keep trucking I guess!

    • WalterPoon profile image
      Author

      Poon Poi Ming 4 years ago from Malaysia

      Bedbugabscond, I'll test it out first and let you know as soon as possible.

    • steveso profile image

      Steve 3 years ago from Brockport, NY

      Thanks for all of the information. I joined Google+ a while ago in oder to promote my blogs. I recently got an email from them telling me that my account was in danger of being cancelled because I use InfoLinks in terxt advertising in my blogs. AdSense is apparently okay as it is owned by Google. I am not sure if it is worth using Google+ or even it is possible using it to drive traffice to my blogs.

    • WalterPoon profile image
      Author

      Poon Poi Ming 3 years ago from Malaysia

      Steveso, you are right... I promote my websites, with AdSense ads, in Google+ and I've no problems so far. I guess Google treats InfoLinks as their competitor. Is InfoLinks worth joining? I joined BidVertiser and Clicksor, but revenues are so pathetic.

    • steveso profile image

      Steve 3 years ago from Brockport, NY

      Thanks WalterPoon for your reply. It was interesting that I received this email from Google+ shortly after AdSense terminated my account for something I didn't do. I guess it's a control thing with Google. I actually earned more money from InfoLinks than I did with AdSense.

    • WalterPoon profile image
      Author

      Poon Poi Ming 3 years ago from Malaysia

      Steveso, I am still confused. Did you display AdSense with Infolinks on the same page? If your AdSense is terminated, you can appeal but the chance of getting reinstated is as good as striking a lottery. Maybe you should get your wife or your children to apply for AdSense and then make use of their account instead. Relying on AdSense, as we all know, is very fragile. Because they use automated systems to detect fraud, they do make mistakes at time... something we often hear in the forums. Thanks for introducing InfoLinks. I should take a look at that so that I don't put all my eggs in one basket.

    • steveso profile image

      Steve 3 years ago from Brockport, NY

      I did have both AdSense and Infolinks on my blogs at the same time for over a year. I tried appealing to ASense twice. When you appeal they tell you it could take up to 2 weeks for an answer. Both times I got rejected in under an hour. I switched to Qadabra and Chitika ads, which I like much better. Qadabra pays better than AdSense.

    • WalterPoon profile image
      Author

      Poon Poi Ming 3 years ago from Malaysia

      Steveso, that explains... it takes time for AdSense to track violations and when they do, they are merciless. It's so easy to violate AdSense rules... I made a number of mistakes myself, e.g. auto-generated pages that display AdSense because I posted the codes in the backend and it shows on every page. But they were quite lenient... they caught one of my website and just banned that website and not my whole account.

      Chitika... I think I did tried that but I cannot remember why I dropped. Clicksor does not have much ads to display and most ad boxes are empty. I should take a good look at Qadabra.

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