Marketers Recommend a Google+ Presence

Nov 10, 2011 7:24 PM  By

Are you ready to build your Google Plus page? On Monday, Google announced it had opened Google+ Pages, which had been available to businesses by invite only, to global brands worldwide.

Macy’s, one of the first retailers to launch a Google+ page during the Beta phase, has about 12,000 followers on its Google+ page. Macy’s has more than 2.7 million Facebook followers.

Google+ has an estimated 40 million users, which is 20-times less than Facebook has. Though Google+ doesn’t have the sheer volume of rival social network Facebook, marketers say merchants need to carve out a presence there.

Why? For the SEO benefits, and the intimacy of a smaller crowd.

Nadim Hossain, vice president of marketing for social commerce solution provider PowerReviews, says Google+ is a breeding ground for user-generated content, which he says is more important than ever given Google’s new algorithm update. That update takes a page’s “freshness” into account when ranking search results.

“Second, the deep integration between Google search and Google+ means that creating a business page gives you an opportunity to get a freebie, organic search result in the first search engine result page,” Hossain says.

Josh Himwich, director of ecommerce solutions for Quidsi (the parent company of diapers.com, soap.com, wag.com and yoyo.com), says Facebook remains the king with no real pretenders to the throne in sight.

“Google + hasn’t added any special sauce to their business pages to make them a credible threat,” Himwich says. “They’ve basically achieved parity, and nothing more.”

But since Twitter is an important but secondary channel for the Quidsi brands (Himwich says all its brands have a strong Twitter presence), he will make sure they have a Google+ presence.

“Twitter and Google + attract a similar audience of web industry heavyweights,” Himwich says.

Twitter has more than 200 million users, or about a quarter of Facebook’s mass volume. As for followers, Macy’s has more than 75,000 on Twitter.

Here’s a video from Google that explains the benefits of a Google+ for Business page: