Google+ and/or Author Rank may be a big part of the future way Google will place sites in the search engine rankings. If you want to future-proof your site for even the possibility of greater social signals being part of the organic algorithm, it’s crucial that you at least get started with a Google+ business page and dedicate at least one person to making a Google+ profile for Author Rank. While full optimization is ideal, having the process started shows Google that you are on the right track.
5 Reasons to Use Google+
- Google+ and/or Author Rank (which requires a Google+ personal profile) may eventually increase search rankings. Getting Google+ shares and “+1s” for your site already has an impact on search rankings for those who are logged in to Google.
- Google+ is an upcoming social channel owned by Google whose future depends on it working. Therefore they are placing added importance on having Google+ pages and profiles.
- Google+ can provide excellent branding via your authors’ faces appearing in the search engine results pages, increasing branding and click-through-rates. (Greg Boser of Blueglass says he sees an increased click-through rate of 40%!)
- Google+ and Google Local have merged, making Google+ truly critical for Google local/mobile results.
- Google+ Communities rank in the search results and are another way to extend your presence there.
To achieve Author Rank you need to have an optimized Google+ profile. After you optimize your profile, you’ll need to go to your website and have it optimized for Google+ by including an author bio page which links to your Google+ profile, and by adding the “rel=author” tag on your content. These steps help “connect the dots” with Google and tie your profiles and bios together. Author Rank also plays a big role in blogger outreach—now if you post on other blogs for publicity you can add more authority to them by linking them back to your Google+ profile.
Additionally, for local searches Google is replacing Google Places with Google+ Local. By optimizing your local page, you can increase the chance of your website being seen in the search results.
Google Local results dominate for many local searches, and Google+ now plays a major role in these local results. Additionally, Google is displaying links to Google+ business pages in these listings, and incorporating Google Reviews, Sitelinks, and even Author Rank-style profile photos within the Google Local results.