3/1/2011 11:26 AM
It has been a while since I was able to write a we update so this one is overdue. I will need to update you mostly on what is going on at Google. As you may know Google has a 82 % marketshare in Canada, so when Google makes changes it will have an impact on when and how your website is shown.
This first big announcement of the year was Google Places now replaces what used to be known as Google Local. Yellow pages continues to lose bsuiness as most business owners have realized that the BOOk is as obsolete as CD's. If you are not set up with Local Listings yet this is the time to call us as yoru competitors may already be listed and that can be detrimental to your business.
The bigger change is that Google now includes your Socila Profile when determining if you will be listed on page one. Google users have demanded that social relevance becomes part of the algorythm to determine how high you will rank and not having a social media presence on Facebook, twitter, youtube etc will get you de-ranked in favour of competitors who do have a social presence. Keep reading to get all the relevant information for your business.
Google announced last week that they are officially “Pimpin’-out” their Search Results by including social elements from your social circle on the Search Engine Results Page (SERP).
According to Google’s Official blog the changes were put in place on Feb 17th 2011. With this change users can expect to see social search results rank anywhere on the SERP, and below the result, users will be able to see who shared it via an annotation. Keep in mind that you’ll only get social search results when you choose to log in to your Google Account. It is currently only for Google.com in English.
Check out this great video showcasing some of the changes in Google’s Social Search Results:
In the past, these search results appeared only at the bottom of the SERP, or by using the ‘Social’ filter located on the left side columns. However, now they will be visible anywhere on the page.
This shift in some ways is analogous to the one that Google made when it introduced Personalized Search whereby a user who was logged into Google would experience results differently then when they were logged out. The user would be allowed to move certain results up to display a personalized SERP and other results down. The user would also be allowed to comment on relevant results.
What does Social Search Results mean for your business?
This common question will arise in the minds of all business people. Given the already ongoing debate on monetizing social media, how does inclusion of Social Results in the Search Engine Results Page impact businesses?
Here are some ways it will have an impact:
Businesses will need to actively participate in building their Social Circle. Having a larger social footprint will allow a business to have that many more advocates of their brand, which in turn will influence all their friends
Interacting with your social circle is key. The premise being that a friend of a fan/follower may be searching for your service or product, and they are more likely to click through if they knew that one of their connections or friends have had a positive experience. This is basic word of mouth and has been happening forever, the difference here is that the results are in real time as the user is searching.
A couple of things to keep in mind is that you need to have a Google Profile and be logged in to experience Social Results. You can link your various social media accounts to your Google Profile to have a better experience. Given that there is some love lost between Facebook and Google, Google’s Social Results are not taking into account the Facebook ‘Likes’.
Looking forward to the next round of changes as Google continues to refine its Social Search Feature.
WSI has just announced WSI Reach Cast for all Canadian Locations. This is the tool that you need to use on a regular basis if you want to get to or retain a top position on Google Listings.
To learn more about how your company can establish or improve your social search results rank please contact me at WSI Winnipeg.