Google claims that social media signals do not affect search ranking, but numerous case studies such as those by Shrushti.com and Moz.com have proven otherwise. Thanks to algorithm updates like Hummingbird, quality content is given precedence over spammy ones—and retweets, likes and shares are pointing people towards worthwhile articles and videos.
It comes as a surprise, then, that Google’s own social media platform, Google+, is bailing out of the game. TechCrunch.com even called the beleaguered platform a “walking dead” in an article:
“Today, Google’s Vic Gundotra announced that he would be leaving the company after eight years. The first obvious question is where this leaves Google+, Gundotra’s baby and primary project for the past several of those years.
What we’re hearing from multiple sources is that Google+ will no longer be considered a product, but a platform — essentially ending its competition with other social networks like Facebook and Twitter.
A Google representative has vehemently denied these claims. “Today’s news has no impact on our Google+ strategy — we have an incredibly talented team that will continue to build great user experiences across Google+, Hangouts and Photos.”
According to two sources, Google has apparently been reshuffling the teams that used to form the core of Google+… We hear that there’s a new building on campus, so many of those people are getting moved physically, as well — not necessarily due to Gundotra’s departure.”
Naturally, Baton Rouge SEO companies like Red Stick SEO have weighed in on how this development might affect search results. Experts have long held that Google+, among all social media platforms, has the biggest effect on SERPs because of one feature: authorship. According to Google CEO Eric Schmidt, content tied to verified online profiles (e.g. a Google+ account) usually rank higher than those that do not.
While Google+ may be folding its hand as a social media platform, it remains an important authorship tool. Hence, its role in the SEO industry should not be diminished by this change in focus. Besides, SEO specialists employ various strategies aside from Google+ authorship to boost online visibility. These include services like website audits, online reputation management, local buzz, pay-per-click campaigns and adwords remarketing, among others.
The report above signals the end of a chapter for Google+. However, its parent company knows that change is inherent in the tech landscape, and some products might need be refocused if they are to survive. With the help of Baton Rouge search engine optimization experts though, clients can rest assured that their website will remain front and center in SERPs despite these developments.
(Source: Google+ Is Walking Dead, TechCrunch.com, April 24, 2014)