Everyone who has a business, whether they’re self-employed or run a chain of restaurants, wants to be found.
That is unless their business involves the cultivation of a certain herb or the laundering of items other than laundry.
Who doesn’t want to rank on top of that Google search results page?
After all, Google does owns the top two search engines in the world: GOOGLE and YouTube
Networking through “Circles”
Google+ “About” pages contain a lot of information that will enable you to expand your personal and business network. With the information provided, you’re able to put the contacts in circles according to labels that reflect interests, expertise, prospects, IRL (real life contacts), geography etc.
Making your “About” page keyword rich and descriptive will also help Google and other “plussers” find you.
(For more on circles & G+, check this video: What is Google+ (Google Plus) and do I need it? )
Lead Generation & Nurturing
Because of its SEO advantage and uncluttered share-friendly platform, Google+ is a prime lead generator.
Like other social media, it should be treated as an outpost, not your home base. Your base is where people will do business with you. Your outposts is where you network and develop relationships.
As Mari Smith says:
We’re not B2C or B2B anymore, we’re P2P – People to People. (cue Barbara song)
Through interaction; commenting and sharing on other’s posts, you can increase the number of people who follow (circle) you in a relatively short time.
Keep in mind that you should have a strategy for who you circle as that can influence your Google search results when logged into Google+.
Optimize your Google+ posts for SEO
Not being an SEO specialist, I’ve inserted Cyrus Shepard‘s 6 point list that illustrates Google’s SEO strategy for Google+.
1. Incentivize Inbound Links
Google started displaying author photos in its search results. In order to display a photo, Google asks authors to add links from their webpages to their Google+ profile.
Google’s SEO Tactic: Require Authors to Link to their Google+ Profile
2. Internal Linking
One thing noted about Google+ when it was released was just how easy it was to be in lots of circles, or add lots of people to your own. People who struggled on Twitter for years to build up 1000 followers, suddenly found themselves in 2000 or 3000 Google+ circles, seemingly overnight.
Google’s strategy to connect everyone on the planet also makes for good internal linking. Following more than 1000 people may not create a practical social experience, but it creates a great SEO opportunity. The more your content is shared in other people’s streams and profiles, then the more your content is crawled, indexed, and deemed important by search engines.
Google’s SEO Tactic: Encourage Large Circles Counts
3. Lots of Indexable Content
Google structures content to provide a wealth of information for search engines, to index and serve in search results. Compare: Facebook – 275 Words, Twitter – 491 Words, Google+ – 2621 Words
My public Google+ profile contains a wealth of information, all visible to search engines, including:
- Biographical Information
- Full Text of Public Posts
- Links to people who have added me to their circles
- Everything I have ever +1’d
Google’s SEO Tactic: Search Engine Friendly Profiles
4. On-Page Optimization
Google+ makes it easy to share posts from others – a feature much like retweeting on Twitter or reblogging on Tumblr. These Google+ posts frequently show up in search results as their own entries. Also, Google wisely choose longer, more descriptive title tags.
Google’s SEO Tactic: Descriptive Title Tags
5. User Generated Content
Every public post is crawled and indexed by Google search. The privacy settings on the profiles are simple, intuitive and encourage openness…Facebook, in contrast, only shares posts from fan pages with Google, and not posts from regular profiles.
Google’s SEO Tactic: Encourage Public Sharing
6. Show Google+ Author Profiles in Search Results
This demonstrates the power of rich snippets.
Google’s SEO Tactic: Creative Rich Snippets
Join me on Google+ and I’ll show you around
About Ray Hiltz
Ray Hiltz is a Google Plus Specialist and Social Media Strategist helping small businesses establish their brands and build their communities on the social web. A strong proponent for the power of collaborative communication and "humanized" digital networking, Ray writes about social media, social business and Google Plus. His clients include hotels, restaurants, consulting firms, entrepreneurs, writers and individuals just trying to make sense of "social". Ray is a popular speaker on Social Media, Social Business and Google+.