In the last few days the internet has been awash with announcements about Google and its new launch – Google Plus, or to put it more simply, Google+.
Google refers to this as “real life sharing”. It has also aimed to describe its new idea as being more subtle and personal than many other social networks that already exist online. Clearly it is trying to put itself ahead of Facebook and Twitter among others, but it will be interesting to see how far it gets in this regard.
Here are some of the main features to look forward to if you decide to use Google+:
1. Create Circles of specific people depending on their interests and appeal; have acquaintances in one circle and friends in another
2. Add a range of personal interests to your personal Google+ account; use their Sparks search engine to find the relevant information
3. Instantly upload photos from your phone to your private cloud online
4. Meet up with people online whenever it suits you and them, by using the Hangouts feature of Google+
5. Group messaging is also included with the Huddle feature
The project is currently in trials and is only available by invitation. But it is widely expected to be rolled out to everyone in the near future. Vic Gundotra from Google has said, “We believe online sharing is broken. And even awkward…” Clearly he believes that Google+ is the answer to this ‘broken’ sharing. Some believe it is simply Google’s shot across the bows at Facebook et al. But we shall see how good Google+ actually is when it is rolled out to everyone.
For businesses looking to make worthwhile contacts with other businesses and with clients, Google+ could be more useful than some other social networks. It is certainly well worth keeping an eye on. But until the network is launched in full, there is no telling just how successful (or not) it might be. It is definitely worth keeping a close eye on the trial to see whether it could be a useful tool for businesses, like PPC and SEO.