Saturday, July 16, 2011

Google +1 and Search Engine Rankings

Ever since the release of the Google +1 button, the SEO world has been buzzing about how much this new social share button by the search engine giant would affect search results. Now, after Google+ was released a couple of weeks ago and quickly garnered 10 million users, it is easy to see that this is going to be a factor that we are going to have to take into consideration for a long time to come.

Many sites have not implemented the button into their blog or website yet (if you have not I suggest you do) but Google+ users are still using it to share over 1 billion pieces of information a day which is quite astounding. All of these feel good numbers are great and all, but how does it help us in the world of SEO?

SEOmoz embarked on this quest to see how much, if any, the newly implemented Google +1 button affected a website’s rankings in the search results. One thing that is a clear take away from the study is social shares from Google +1 along with twitter and Facebook help in the indexation of the site. Within a matter of hours the new page was indexed and showing up on the SERPs with only a few social shares.

But, we ask again, how does it affect SEO? 

Unfortunately the experiment was pretty inclusive in terms of search engine optimization. When twitter was used there was a direct ranking result for high amount of tweets but the Google +1 shares could not find a similar correlation.

There is something to take away from the study and to keep in your back pocket. First, if you want to get your pages indexed quickly, encourage shares across many social networks. Second, twitter and Facebook are still more recognized in the eyes of the search engines but this could change in a matter of months. If Google+ and the +1 button continue to grow exponentially as they have you have to assume that they will become more of a ranking factor. Also, Google being Google I could see them placing more priority on an in house product than a product that they are directly competing with like say….Facebook.

I would advise to implement the +1 button, join Google+ and keep a keen eye out for any new studies done similar to this one because I think that you will begin to see a change of tide when it comes to social sharing.

About the Author:
Corey Rabazinski is the co-founder of Orlando SEO consulting firm SEOhatch. 

 
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