Early this year, Google announced its plans to split Streams and Photos as separate products. Both originally were part of Google+ and still are.
However, Google's concomitance and stiff upper lip about the future of its social networking platform is infuriating, to say the least.
The deafening silence about Google+ has already encouraged pundits to declare the service as unofficially dead. What was once deemed as the "Facebook Killer" has transformed into the Walking Dead.
Regardless of what people feel about Google+, it's still up and running, and doesn't appear to be in any signs of danger (so far). In fact, some people would go as far to say that Google+ is not a ghost town but more of a "social media graveyard."
Take it for what it is, but if building website traffic is your priority, then it wouldn't hurt to still integrate this social networking site as par of your marketing strategy. While other social media sites will be your focus in promoting your blog for increased traffic, which is pretty much what most blogging resources out there including firstsiteguide, will be saying, there's always a place for a Google+ in there.
Below are tips on how you can leverage your Google+ profile to grow your blog or website traffic.
Google authorship was a big deal years ago. The ability to humanize your brand on search results by making your Google+ profile picture appear on the rich snippets of your ranking web pages. This can be done by adding a simple line of code on the backend of your website as instructed in this post.
However, Google recently dropped the use of authorship from search results due to a host of factors. In short, the solutions that were offered by Google authorship were not sufficient to solve the problem of demystifying publishers by associating their names to web pages.
Nonetheless, there's no reason why you shouldn't continue applying this to your site. Even though authorship may be "dead" at this post, Author Rank isn't. While not a formal SEO factor, attributing your name in your posts using the rel="author" command, you inform search engines that you are their author.
Beef up your About page
As a blogger or webmaster who writes posts online from time to time, you may want to fill out your About page to inform people who stumble upon your Google+ profile about who you are. Since you will be linking to this page from the posts you will write (as part of your effort to develop your Author Rank), you need to focus on writing a good piece in your Story section.
If you want to improve your blog traffic, you ought to introduce yourself as a blog owner before linking back to the site. Also describe your blog sin such a way that they will be enticed to click through it and read your posts. In this case, having persuasive copywriting skills is a must.
Aside from the usual things that are filled out in this page (Work/Occupation, Basic Information), the most interesting entry to fill out here is the Links section.
This section plays a role in confirming your Google Authorship in order for your profile image to appear in the page's rich snippet. However, since the Authorship has been scrapped, there's no reason why you shouldn't include the sites where you have published your posts, aside from your blog.
For bloggers, featuring the sites where you have contributed in this section informs visitors on how accomplished you are. This could lead you to more blogging gigs in the future, if you are skill as a service.
Join Google Communities and promote your latest posts there
One of the best features of Google+ is the Communities. Similar to Facebook Groups and LinkedIn Groups, you can search and join communities related to your niche to meet the influencers and important people in your industry.
While promoting your blog posts to increase their traffic is a priority, this will not happen if you don't forge relationships with the members of the community first. Take time to comment on and +1 their posts and post question about your niche to usher discussion.
Doing this in your chosen communities allows you to build clout and influence to prove to the members of the groups that you sincerely improve the group's quality through your interactions with them.
Once this has been establish you can start sharing posts on the community that will effectively encourage members to visit your page. Don't forget to use hashtag and tag people and businesses you've mentioned in your page (using the '@' sign) to increase the reach of your post.
Join Hangouts and reach out to other bloggers
Hangouts is a great way to reach out to your friends in Google+ through video chat. Doing this will also let you establish your brand in your niche and make a more lasting impact.
However, Hangouts is not just a mere video chat platform where you can chat with people in your Circle. For the purpose of increasing your blog traffic, Hangout provides you the stage to launch a business webinar.
Before launching one, you need to prepare yourself in how to develop a winning webinar that will garner the most number of signups. If this will be your first time to do this, check out this helpful post at Boost Blog Traffic that details the steps in launching your webinar.
Final thoughts: Regardless of whether Google+ is running on borrowed time, the fact of the matter is that it's still running and there us still great use for marketers and webmasters on how they can use their Google+ account to increase their blog traffic as featured in the tips above.