According to a recent quarterly study by Globalwebindex, Google+ has leapfrogged both Twitter and YouTube to become the world’s second largest social network. Take a moment and let that sink in.
The very social network that so many people dubbed as a “ghost town” is now riding shotgun to the mighty Facebook. The biggest question that crossed my mind is, “How did this happen?”
Some people are crying conspiracy on Google for the results, but assuming there is some truth to the report then it would seem a little analysis is in order.
How Google+ Became Number Two
The saving grace of Google+ is that it’s tied to the most powerful search engine in the world. In other words much of the interest in Google+ exists because of the ties that it could have to potential search results.
I don’t see Google+ ever fulfilling the role that Facebook currently dominates as the go to place for friends and acquaintances to socialize online. The advantage Google+ has over Facebook (and everyone else) is that Google can keep Google+ relevant to users by simply making it relevant to search results.
Thus Google+ integration has become a necessity for most businesses. There are certainly bunches of people that use Google+ as a social outlet, it’s just nowhere nearly on the same scale as its competitor.
What About The Other Social Networks?
Google+ is gaining ground over the rest of the competition not because it’s necessarily better at being a social website, but because of its association with the rest of Google. Sites like twitter need to find a way to make themselves relevant outside of their own sphere of influence.
In the future I can see Facebook and Google+ taking two very divergent, yet successful paths. Facebook will remain dominant in the realm of casual social interaction while Google+ will perfect its influence in the business world.
In short, I see Facebook’s continued growth being fueled by people, and Google’s growth to be fueled by brands. Smaller sites like Twitter need to find their own niche, or risk getting left in the dust.
This all serves as an important reminder to make sure our own (or our business’) online presence is keeping pace. How integrated is your business with Google+? Looking for a way to get ahead of the competition? Contact us below and let us know how we can help!