This past October, Google announced that they will be shutting down their social network, Google+, for consumers after a data leak. To some this was a shock, and others, not so much.
The reasons that Google gave for shutting down included the lack of use and overall security. They claimed that “90% of Google+ user sessions [were] less than five seconds.” This very clearly shows that users did not intend to visit the social channel, and left immediately after realizing where they were.
Ben Smith, Google Fellow and Vice President of Engineering, stated in a blog post, “[Google+] has not achieved broad consumer or developer adoption, and has seen limited user interaction with apps.”
Google originally announced that they would shut down their social platforms to consumers in August of 2019. But after a second data leak they have moved the date to April 2019.
How does this impact me?
Sure, it’s interesting that Google is shutting down one of their products, but how does this really impact you? Believe it or not, it might very much! Let’s go over how this change could affect you and your website.
The shutting down of Google+ can actually be a relief for some small businesses. You no longer have to worry about posting and managing this social network and can focus on what is really making an impact.
This is also a good reminder that everything online around social channels is temporary and there is no guarantee that all of your posts and images will be accessible forever. This is the reason that we recommend posting all of your valuable content on your website, as you then have direct control over it. After posting to your website, you can push out links on social media channels, helping drive more traffic.
How will this change affect SEO for my website? As Google has slowly been phasing Google+ out of their tools, this change is not expected to impact your site SEO.
Social sharing buttons on your website
Do you have Google+ sharing buttons on your website? With the official shutdown of this social channel, it’s now time to take note where you have these little buttons. Take the time to remove the Google+ branding from your website, printed materials, email signatures, and anywhere else you may have the G+ logo.
Google My Business
Just because Google+ is shutting down doesn’t mean that you should forget about updating your status on other Google products. Google My Business isn’t a social media channel, but it does have the ability for you to post product/services updates, share info about your team, or whatever you’d like to share with local customers. With a 1,500 character limit, Google My Business gives you a little room to be creative with what you share.
Delete your account?
Even though Google+ is shutting down, should you delete your account or just leave it and allow Google to purge your data? Some choose to delete their account as a way to ensure that all data is erased. If you decide to go that route, be sure to download all of your files first.