Is this Google’s Biggest Shake-up For Years?

http://googleblog.blogspot.com/2012/01/search-plus-your-world.html

” We’re transforming Google into a search engine that understands not only content, but also people and relationships. We began this transformation with Social Search, and today we’re taking another big step in this direction by introducing three new features:

Personal Results, which enable you to find information just for you, such as Google+ photos and posts—both your own and those shared specifically with you, that only you will be able to see on your results page;
Profiles in Search, both in autocomplete and results, which enable you to immediately find people you’re close to or might be interested in following; and,
People and Pages, which help you find people profiles and Google+ pages related to a specific topic or area of interest, and enable you to follow them with just a few clicks. Because behind most every query is a community. ”
This has caused a bit of friction across the popular Social and SEO forums, from privacy concerns to rankings, but it all makes interesting reading and you can follow some of the debate here:

http://www.webmasterworld.com/google/4405563.htm

Google’s Ongoing Strategy – Be Prepared:

Google are constantly implementing changes to benefit users’ search experience, and with the integration of Google search, Google+ and Plus Your World the user will now have:

results driven by trusted reviews
results based on personal interests
results based on location
results based on search history
social interaction online
circles of interest
new contacts with the same interests
influence over friends search results and behaviour
Google and Social Search – Are You The Content Source?

Google can really start to push the results users wish to see and reward the ‘real’ content drivers, hopefully pushing out all the bad content within their index (Panda updates).

Google will be able to view readers activity and search patterns from viewing their Google account activity, what they bought, what videos they viewed, searches they made and activity timeframe, even what their friends thought of the same content. This data can then be used to place better content within the search results.

So What Does This Mean To You As a Business?

It was only a matter of time before Google would enhance their new service Google+ and this change is a great way to attract new users on board. For businesses it’s a big strategy changer, as it will have an effect on traffic (good or bad – it’s difficult to tell), but for the general searcher to see relevant and personal results it’s great, and it’s an objective Google has been heading towards for many years.
From a brand point of view we don’t see that this will have an immediate effect on your traffic simply because Google+ isn’t yet as popular across the main stream of users (it’s mainly techies who have signed-up to Google+) compared to the likes of Facebook or Twitter. But don’t let this fool you as in time, no doubt Google+ will become as popular as other social sites and in time many users will use Google search whilst logged into Google+ dramatically changing the search result landscape as we see it now.
As an agency we now have to technically provide recommendations for two types of search. One for users logged into their Google+ account and another for users who are not. This can be seen as a Public / Private Service approach to SEO.

For users logged into Google+ the recommendations will be more around local search and social media, creating circles (private within Google+). Putting our creative skills on full throttle in order to find ways to gain more followers across all social platforms.

For the traditional search (public non logged in users) the current search results shouldn’t differ a great deal, and it is a case of following our ethical SEO techniques to further increase organic results for the public approach.

Both strategies should be driven by quality content (as it always has been). But becoming a content provider within your industry has never been so important.

If you would like further information on how HookedOnMedia can help your business through this change please contact us now for further information.