Google’s answer to Facebook’s “Like” and Twitter’s “follow”: The +1

Google’s answer to Facebook’s “Like” and Twitter’s “follow”: +1

Google’s answer to Facebook’s “Like” and Twitter’s “follow”: +1

We’ve all figured out how deeply integrated social media has become with all aspects to life, from business development to extremely personal stuff. And after the dismal performance of Google’s previous attempt at social media through “Buzz”, the search engine giant has now come up with a button for third-party websites; the +1

Closely following Twitter’s introduction of the “follow” button for third-party sites – which behaves in a somewhat similar manner to Facebook’slike” – Google’s +1 recommend button lets people recommend websites to other people in their social circle.

Publicly Cool

The digital shorthand for “this is pretty cool”, Google and partners such as The Washington Post, O’Reilly, and Best Buy are already adding the feature to their websites.

Evan Gilbert, Google’s Software Engineer said in a post on Google’s official blog “+1 is as simple on the rest of the web as it is on Google search. With a single click you can recommend that raincoat, news article or favorite sci-fi movie to friends, contacts and the rest of the world. The next time your connections search, they could see your +1s directly in their search results, helping them find your recommendations when they’re most useful.”

By clicking the +1s on websites that you find interesting and / or useful, you would be recommending these publicly. These +1’s will then start appearing in Google’s search results.

Google sites that will soon feature +1 buttons include the Android Market, Blogger, Product Search, and YouTube, Gilbert indicated in his post.

The Heavily Incentivized 1

With social media websites having become the world’s most visited marketplaces, any successful innovations in this area are obvious brand promotion moves that ensure further customer loyalty.

Google’s previous attempts at breaking into the social media market have been relative non-starters. Orkut, Google’s initial, direct competitor with Facebook, is used only by very select circles, while the newer Buzz feature, despite being linked to Google’s very popular email service, has not found many takers.

However, in introducing the +1 button, Google is linking its newest foray into the social media circuit by capitalizing on the need for websites to publicly do better than their competitors, and for this to be communicated in a manner as plainly obvious as possible.

The more number of +1 clicks a website gets would directly translate as higher popularity for the website, and this would be reflected in search engine results.

Making the most of Google’s popularity as a globally preferred search engine, the +1 offers the possibility of changing the way people search the internet for information. When users search for a particular article on Google, the +1 allows them to see what their friends have liked, making it easier for them to pick the best out of the lot.

According to the official +1 webpage, anyone who has a public Google profile would be able to use the +1 addition. Websites or pages +1ed by users would then be stored in a new tab on their public Google profile.

image courtesy google.com/+1/button/

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Richard Meryn
Richard Meryn, Associate Editor Industry Leaders Magazine (www.industryleadersmagazine.com)

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