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social media how toDo you use Google+ for your business?

Interested in ways to get more exposure?

With a few simple tactics, you can extend your reach on Google+ and attract additionalย followers.

In this article I’ll show you six ways to increase your visibility on Google+ and in Google search results.

six ways to use google+ to increase visibility

Discover six ways to use Google+ to increase visibility.

Listen to this article:

#1: Include Key Links in Your Introduction

Google+ automatically places your verified website link in a couple of places for business pages. It will be at the top of your profile page above the Follow button.

google+ verified profile header

Verified website link in the profile header for a business page.

It will also appear in the official links box on your About tab at the bottom, along with any additional links you choose to share.

about tab links

The Links box on the About tab.

For local business pages, instead of a Links box, your verified website link is in your Contact Information box.

contact information box

A local business page’s Contact Information box.

The other key place you want to include your links is in your page’s or personal profile’s Introduction. You can add as many links as you want (within reason) to the Introduction, which appears on your About tab.

story section links

The Introduction for profiles and pages.

For local business pages, the Introduction is also in the Contact Information box. This allows you to create text surrounding your links to encourage visitors to click through to your website. So instead of just seeing your website link, you can give them a reason to go to it. Or you can link deeper into your website to specific product or service pages, valuable content and other information.

#2: Optimize Posts for Google Search Results

Need a reason to post more on Google+? If someone follows your Google+ profile or page, they’re more likely to see your posts in Google search results.

For example, when I do a search for the latest Mad Max movie release, I find two posts from my Google+ connections on the first page of the search results.

google+ connection posts in search results

Search results featuring Google+ connections.

The average person or website would be hard-pressed to get his or her name onto the first page of search results, especially when competing with news sites like Forbes and Deadline, and major websites like IMDB, Wikipedia and Rotten Tomatoes. But Calvin Lee and Karen Woodham both appear in my search results simply because I follow them on Google+.

If you want to have a better chance of getting on the first page of search results, continue to grow your Google+ audience. Then be sure to post often, especially about topics that people in your niche or industry search for.

Just as you would optimize your blog content for keywords so your posts will appear in search, you would optimize your updates on Google+ by using keywords in their text and hashtags.

#3: Schedule Consistent Updates to Your Profile and Page

There are several popular social media management tools that allow you to post updates to your Google+ business page, but most of these don’t work with your Google+ personal profile. Fortunately, a tool like BuzzBundle allows you to post to and manage both Google+ personal profiles and business pages.

BuzzBundle (available for Windows, Mac and Linux) allows you to create personas to manage your social media accounts. If you only have two personas to manage, you can download and use BuzzBundle for free. If you need more personas for other businesses or clients, you need to purchase a professional license for $199.

You can have a personal persona for your personal profiles on Google+, Facebook, LinkedIn, Twitter and YouTube. You can also have a business persona for your business pages and profiles on Google+, Facebook, Twitter and YouTube.

buzzbundle personas

Creating personas to use with your Google+ profile and pages.

Once your personas and accounts are connected, you can add news streams for most of your accounts, including your Google+ personal profile. You can then comment on posts from your news stream using your Google+ profile within the software.

buzzbundle google+ comment feature

Commenting on the latest posts from Google+ connections with your personal profile.

You can add a stream for your wall to keep up with your latest posts on your Google+ profile, +1 comments and reply to comments.

buzzbundle google+ comment feature

Reviewing comments on your Google+ personal profile posts.

You can also post or schedule updates to your Google+ personal profile, along with other profiles in your persona, with photo attachments.

buzzbundle google+ scheduled post feature

Scheduling updates to your Google+ personal profile.

#4: Use Google+ as Your Business Page

Unlike Facebook business pages where you’re limited to commenting only on other pages, or a LinkedIn company page where you can’t do much outside of your own page, you can do a lot using Google+ as your business page. Start by going to your profile photo at the top right of Google+ and selecting the page you want to use.

switch to use as a page

Switch to your Google+ page.

You can also go to your Pages dashboard to see all of your pages and click through to the one that you want to use Google+ as. This page also summarizes your number of followers and the last post date for each page.

google+ pages dashboard

See your pages and switch to the one you want to use.

Using Google+ as your page, you can comment on any Google+ posts shared publicly by personal profiles or business pages. You can also join and participate in Google+ communities, create events and start Google+ hangouts. All of these activities help you get more exposure for your business and grow your Google+ business page followers.

#5: Create or Join a Community

Google+ communities are similar to Facebook and LinkedIn groups. The one main difference is that you can use either your Google+ personal profile or your business page to both create and participate in communities.

When you create a community with your Google+ business page, the community is featured on your page’s Posts and About tabs, as shown on the Unbounce Google+ page.

google+ community header

How your communities are featured on your page.

Inside your community, your business page will be featured as the creator of the group at the top right.

features google+ community creator

How your page is featured on your communities.

You also have the option to add a link to your business and other resources in the About This Community box, like Google Analytics does in their Google Analytics Academy.

google+ community about this tab

Links added to the About This Community box.

If you don’t want to create and maintain your own community, you can simply join relevant communities and participate in them using your Google+ personal profile or business page.

#6: Create Collections to Organize Posts by Topic

Google+ Collections allows you to organize your posts by topic. For example, if you’re a photographer, you can have individual collections for your landscape photography, wedding photography and wildlife photography. If someone is just interested in your wildlife photography, they can follow that collection alone.

Google+ profiles and pages that update dozens of times a day or several times hourly, like a news organization, would especially benefit from using collections. Collections allow people to follow the news they’re most interested in without being overwhelmed by a lot of other updates.

For example, a big news organization could have a collection of top news for the day so people would only get a few updates of the most important headline news. The organization could also have collections for world news, news by location, politics, technology or entertainment.

To create a collection, go to the Collections page and click the Create a Collection button. Type in a name for your collection and set its privacy.

google+ collection

Creating a Google+ collection.

On your new collections page, you can click the Customize link to choose a cover photo and color for your collection.

google+ collection custom features

Customizing your Google+ collection.

From here, you have a couple of options. Post updates directly to a collection, and those posts will also appear on your Google+ profile or page (depending on the privacy setting you chose for the collection). Or publish a post to your profile or page and select the collection to which it should be added in the To: field.
collection.

google+ collection post

Sharing a post with your collection.

Collections are automatically followed by all of your current followers or connections, so your collections start off with the same number of followers or connections that your page or profile currently has. People can then choose to follow you or your collections.

Conclusion

As you can see, there are lots of great ways to use Google+ to promote your business.

What do you think? How do you use Google+? Please share your thoughts in the comments!

how to use google+ to improve visibility

Tips for improving visibility with Google+.

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  • Again a good post , thank you Kristi Hines

  • Awesome Post Kristi. It has been easier for me to join groups in my niche using our software :). Maybe you could check it out in the future. Thank you again

  • I am using google+ only for my personal work and i get lots of positive feedback by sharing only high quality and informative images ๐Ÿ™‚

  • Great post! I’ve been slacking with updating my Google+ pages as I’ve been focused on Twitter (go to) and my new favorite, Instagram. I need a more balanced approach to social media. So many networks, only so many hours in a day. ๐Ÿ™‚

  • Stuart O’Neill

    G+ is made for that type of high-level very personal interaction and engagement. Good for you. I will add you to my photographers circle. ๐Ÿ™‚

  • Thanks Jeewan! ๐Ÿ™‚

  • You’re welcome Josephine! ๐Ÿ™‚

  • Thanks Cypher! ๐Ÿ™‚ I need to play more around with Mass Planner – I just have my Windows on a separate hard drive, so I don’t think about it as often.

  • That’s great to hear Chandan! ๐Ÿ™‚

  • Photographers seem to run G+ – makes it a great place to be. ๐Ÿ™‚

  • Thanks Amandah! It’s tough to manage them all – you kind of need a checklist in front of you every day to say that you are devoting X amount of time into specific networks. Otherwise, it’s easy to overlook some.

  • Great post, thanks for emphasizing the value that Google+ still provides. With all the talk of Google repurposing the network, our efforts there have definitely decreased as we attempted to see where its future is headed.

  • Niquenya Fulbright

    We’ve had great results with using hashtags on Google+. It’s a great way to achieve first page Google results for broad keywords that ordinarily wouldn’t be touchable like “cat” or “books” for instance.

  • LauraBeSocial

    Its great! I use Google+ fro my business and its worth it! Thanks for these tips!

  • Thank you for the reply Kristi. Unfortunately, we don’t have any resources as of yet to make a Mac version because as of now we are trying to improve the windows version and add as much feature as possible. Let us know how we can help you and we will get back to you as soon as possible. Thank you again.

  • Nirmala Santhakumar

    Good post on Google Plus Krisiti. I’m a regular user of Google plus and have good no. of followers. Most of the bloggers and internet marketers believe that there is a strong correlation between Google Plus and Google search and even I too.

    I’m almost following all the tips which you’ve mentioned, BuzzBuldle is new to me, I’ll check its details.

  • vijee djega

    Thanks for all the great advice, am going to try out buzzbundle after reading this :-)And am going to put some time into organizing collections.

  • This is a very helpful article. I think Google+ has gone underrated by many. Businesses should target the site more.. it’s continuously growing and we should all capitalize on that while we can. ๐Ÿ™‚

  • Kristina Hughes

    Thanks for sharing useful tips Kristi! Looking forward for more info…

  • Thanks Nirmala! I believe if you have a large enough network, you can influence at least your direct connections’ results thanks to the personalization.

  • I hope you like it Vijee! ๐Ÿ™‚

  • I agree! ๐Ÿ™‚

  • You’re welcome Kristina! ๐Ÿ™‚

  • Kristi this is brilliant, I have been looking at using G+ more and this will help

  • Hey Kristi,

    Thanks for sharing these features about a Google+. I just found out about Google collections but didn’t know too much detail about it until I read this post. I like the idea that my collections are automatically followed by my followers and connections.

    Thanks for the share Kristi! Have a good one!

  • I’d prefer creating a community rather than joining one. Add relevant people to the niche and ask them to collaborate and contribute with their valuable thoughts.

  • Good post, but I like the fact that you’re even focusing on Google+ to begin with. There is so much suggestion that G+ is dead online these days. I think Google may look for new ways to morph it into something new, but I don’t think they’ll ever let it go. They have huge numbers of people connect in some way to a google account.

    It’s an important network to keep up to date with.

  • Steve

    Thanks for the helpful article, Kristi. Perhaps you or another Social Media Examiner writer has addressed it already, but a topic I’d like you all to cover is how a business can get maximum results from devoting a limited amount of time to social media activities. I’m in that boat myself. After a staff reduction I was given the primary social media responsibilities, on top of an already full plate of duties ranging from public/media relations to promotional materials writing to planning and leading my employer’s trade show program. I devote as much time as I can to our social media pages, but cannot give it the kind of attention it really deserves.

  • Bonny Clayton

    Fabuloso! Thrilled to hear about BuzzBundle for scheduling *profile* updates, now that DoShare has gone kinda wonky when it comes to handling images!!

  • E Creations

    I like your point about joining groups and being active in the posts. This normally results in more followers. The only problem I have is that those are usually people in the industry and not potential or current clients. Any thoughts on adding people that could be clients?

  • Thanks Suzie! ๐Ÿ™‚

  • You’re welcome Sherman! I have a great post coming up focusing on Google+ Collections, so stay tuned. ๐Ÿ™‚

  • If you can manage it, that’s a great plan! ๐Ÿ™‚

  • Google+ isn’t dead until you can’t use it anymore or until you sign on and there are no new updates. That’s how I feel at least.

  • Hi Steve! I don’t know if it’s been addressed here, but there is a system you can use to automate updates to your accounts (like great news articles that you vet using Feedly) and then you just focus on replying to any mentions you get based on those updates or customer service.

    In short, you connect Buffer to all of your accounts, get Feedly Pro and subscribe to the top blogs / news sites in your niche, and use IFTTT to automate the process of sending the articles you favorite to your Buffer to get shared to your social media accounts. If you need help, shoot me an email at info at kristihines dot com. ๐Ÿ™‚

  • I could never get into DoShare. BuzzBundle and Mass Planner have the option to post to G+ profiles. I just use BuzzBundle more because I have a Mac and MP needs Windows.

  • If you can’t find a group that is made up of your potential customers, that’s the perfect opportunity to do like Unbounce did and create one to attract potential customers. See their G+ page and their Conversion Heroes group for inspiration. ๐Ÿ™‚

  • Brian Appleton

    Really good post, I especially agree that updating profiles on a regular basis is essential.

  • I look forward to it!

  • Agreed!

    I really like it, there is a lot of the open source community on there which is something that interests me. I think any social media, large or small, is useful if you can find and connect with a community there.

  • Leon Travers

    Some wonderful tips, thanks for this.

  • Valentina Portnova

    G + is very convenient platform for business integration with maps, youtube and gmail – it’s cool! But there is one drawback – no one uses this network, people are more instagram and facebook.

  • nics article

  • Manish Sharma

    I used this techniques this is very useful. Thanks for share.

  • Good post. It’s challenging for small business owners to put the kind of time that it takes when they don’t see kind of numbers that facebook or other social media outlets show.

  • In fact, I was totally wrong to focus only on Facebook. With these tips will give an upgrade on my Google+. Thank you for sharing this.