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Marketing on Google+ Part 1: 8 Ways to Drive Traffic to Your Site

April 17th, 2012 ::
This entry is part 2 of 3 in the series Marketing With Google+

Since its launch last year, Google+ has rocketed to social media stardom among marketing pros, but not everyone has closely examined what it can do for their own business’s bottom line. In this three-part series, I will show you how to leverage Google+ to boost your company’s online marketing performance.

This first article focuses on how to drive traffic to your website using Google+. Recently Google changed the SEO game by introducing “Search, plus Your World.” This new search concept revolves around Google’s idea that people want to see search results that are related to their personal history and their social profile. So, the +1 and Google+ posts are heavily integrated into the search results Google returns because it is factoring in your social profile in its search strategy.

What this means is that marketers have a world of new opportunities to leverage Google+ to build their SEO strategy and drive traffic to their site. Here are eight ways to do just that.

1.  Use Web links.

Web links help Google know how to categorize you, so try including links between your business’s website or blog and your brand page. These links help Google recognize authorship and remind it of what you’re all about. Google has its own badge creator to easily create links between your content.

2.  Grow your following.

In social media, usually quality trumps quantity, but it pays to have a larger following on Google+ because more followers means a higher search rank on Google. To grow your following, try getting the word out about your Google+ page. Use a badge, and mention it in print and online communications – even on Facebook and Twitter. Also, try leveraging your personal profile (and the personal profiles of your employees) to push out your brand page’s content. Since brand pages are only allowed to follow users who have already followed them, using your personal profile can help you attract more followers for your brand.

3.  Use their keywords, too.

Just like other SEO content strategies, you should think of what your customers will actually type into Google when they look for you. They many not type the industry-specific terms you optimize for, so think like your customer when creating keywords. Now, use those keywords in the About section of your page, and include them in posts so people can easily find your Google+ content when they search.

4.  Use images.

People tend to click on photos and videos more than links, so use them in your content for better engagement. Fill your page with interesting images, both across the top and throughout your posts. Also, many Google searches return images that are prominently displayed, so do your best to get your visual content in front of searchers.

5.  Condition Google to work for you.

In its quest to return better search results, Google has started including people and pages on Google+ that are related to the user’s search query. Although not all searches have this feature yet, being listed in search results is excellent exposure for your company. To train Google to categorize your content, making it more likely you will be featured in search results, be sure to keep your posts on topic and use consistent keywords. As you post on the same topic, you will be conditioning Google to include you in searches related to that topic.

6.  Consider authorship.

Google supports an authorship markup that lets you tag your work to show Google your writings all over the web. When people search for you, Google can pull together your tagged work and present it in a search results page. Setting up authorship is a bit more advanced, and would probably require its own post. For now, check out instructions on Google’s support blog.

7.  Use the +1 button.

According to Google, the +1 button is becoming a significant ranking factor for returning search results. You’ve probably noticed that search results now include the option to +1 a result. Use the +1 button wherever appropriate for your business so you can factor into Google results, too.

8.  Engage them.

As with all social media strategies, it’s important to engage your Google+ community with helpful information, exclusive content, and interesting photos. According to Google, one of the top things you can do to appear in search results is to post and to engage with other people’s posts on Google+. Be sure to +1 other people’s content, and experiment with your own to find out what is getting the best engagement. Later in this series, I’ll also introduce you to Ripples so you can see how Google+ is taking the art (and measure) of engagement to a whole new level.

So, there you have it – eight ways Google+ can drive traffic to your site that you can start using right now. Stay tuned for the rest of our three-part series on using Google+ to boost your business.

Image courtesy of frombogotawithlove.com

Series NavigationMarketing on Google+ Part 2: How to Use RipplesMarketing on Google+ Part 3: Top 3 Reasons You Should Use Google+
The views expressed here are the author's alone and not those of Network Solutions or its partners.

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Posted in Marketing, Social Media | 3 Comments »

  • http://twitter.com/ZeusofMarketing ZeusofMarketing

    How’s is this different or any more effective than executing the same tactics via Linked In , Facebook and Twitter (even Pinterest)? You are telling me that Google will actually penalize a company for not participating in an unproven Social Media network. Last I heard the average time spent in Google+ is 33 seconds – and daily active user has not even been fully disclosed.

  • Anonymous

    As I am sure you know, each social network is a little bit different, and because a lot of people don’t use Google+, this blog post was simply meant as a guide to help people understand it better.  If your target market is using Google+, you should be on it too, so yes, focusing your marketing there may be more effective than LinkedIn, for example.  Great comments, so thanks for sharing! 

  • pradeep prajapati

    As I am sure you know, each social network is a little bit different, and because a lot of people don’t use Google+, this blog post was simply meant as a guide to help people understand it better.  If your target market is using Google+, you should be on it too, so yes, focusing your marketing there may be more effective than LinkedIn, for example.  Great comments, so thanks for sharing!