Skip to Content

The author

Jodie McDonnell

Head of Earned Media

The new social network Google Plus was set to rival Facebook and be Google’s answer to social networking. However in reality, popularity has slowed and many of the general public still don't have a clue what it is. It seems even Google CEO Larry Page momentarily lost interest in Google Plus, not posting publicly on the site from 15 August to 28 September. Now Larry might just be posting tales about nights out on the lash to his private circles, but publicly it doesn't look good to the new users wanting to see what Google Plus has in store.

The new social network Google Plus was set to rival Facebook and be Google’s answer to social networking. However in reality, popularity has slowed and many of the general public still don't have a clue what it is. It seems even Google CEO Larry Page momentarily lost interest in Google Plus, not posting publicly on the site from 15 August to 28 September. Now Larry might just be posting tales about nights out on the lash to his private circles, but publicly it doesn't look good to the new users wanting to see what Google Plus has in store.

Even though Google Plus has been up and about for a months now, it seems to lack the buzz and quick take that big G expected. In recent reports, there are now more than 40 million users, which seems like a lot; however, out of those early adopters, who knows how many of them are still active? Who is still using it and if will they convert? Although celebrities have taken to the new social network, even Google employees are not completely convinced. Concerns over the content and the platform has people talking. Facebook has 750 million active users which makes Google Plus’s 40 million debatably active users look a bit measly in comparison. Now that Google Plus has become public and no invite is needed to join, Google has attempted to attract new users, most notably by slapping an arrow on its homepage to try and lure in some new users. The arrow pointed to a new “You” tab on the Google toolbar, which allowed new users to access the Google Plus social network, but not before you have signed in with your Google account. This seemed to be another hurdle that prevented new users adopting it as readily as Google would have liked. The arrow however might have just channelled enough traffic to the network to coax a few new users to the network and increase its popularity. The site is certainly trying to add new features such as video hangouts, which enable you to chat online with your Android phone and see who you are talking to. You can also share what’s on your computer screen with whoever you’re gassing to. A more interesting feature with regards to SEO is the ability to search within Google from the network, allowing you access to shared social information as well as what’s going down online. This means if a good chunk of people recommend a particular bar, restaurant or service, they will be more prominent in Google’s search results. However with the lack of users, the debate is still on about how much impact this will have in relation to search results. Although initial interest has been somewhat disappointing for Google and posts seem to be fewer by its current users, did Google’s blue arrow attempt and public invitation attract and convert enough users to make it a success and a real rival to Facebook? Who knows but I betcha Google won't go down without a fight. What do you think? - @JodieMcDonne11