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Google’s New +1 Button Looks to Add a New Social Layer to Search Results

April 6, 2011

Google announced last week plans to implement their new “+1 button” functionality in the coming months (also available now at http://www.google.com/experimental). The +1 button adds a social aspects to Google search results and Google Profiles by allowing you to see the recommendations of your Google Profile contacts in search results and on their profiles.

The catch is that you need to have a Google Profile to use the functionality and your recommendations are only visible to other contacts in Google.

It works like this – You will start seeing the “+1” button pop up alongside Google search results and on various websites and articles that have had the feature added to them. As you and your friends click the +1 button to signal the content as something you like or recommend, these recommendations then display as a mark of approval to others within a Google Profile network.

Google eventually plans to offer the ability for publishers to add the +1 button to their websites, very much like Facebook’s “like” button. Depending on its popularity, this could be a great feature to add to your blog postings and business website articles for the purpose of gaining a visible approvals from your followers and customers which are then visible to their friends, eventually serving to possibly increase traffic and boost your level of authority within your industry or area of focus. Webmasters can get the button from Google Webmaster Central.

The button will also display among your individual Google contacts, serving as a new way by which to recommend friends and business contacts.

For a great summary of the goals and impact of this new feature, see Everything You Need To Know About Google’s +1.

Drew Hawkins makes some great points in a recent Social Media Today post regarding some of the current shortcomings of the feature that may need to be eventually overcome for it to see large-scale use, such as the fact that Google profiles are not heavily used as a means to socialize when compared to other options such as Facebook. Regardless of the hurdles, this is a step in the right direction in terms of making the web more “social”.

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2 Comments
  1. This is very good content, Eddy. But does it fit you are describing your brand? Keep your core audience in mind with how you position all your content.

    • Hi Bret. Thanks for the comment! I do believe that this information is relevant to the interests of small business owners and entrepreneurs. Any looking to utilize all of the tools available and maintain an effective social/web presence will want to keep this on their radar and implement the new functionality into their own online and social media presence at some point – all depending on how well it is received, of course.

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