Last week Google announced the +1 button, it’s latest push into social search, nearly a year after Facebook launched Like buttons. The Google +1 button allows you to “+1” the search results and advertisements that you like. Soon you will also be able to add +1 buttons to websites so users can bookmark, share and recommend websites.
Check out this video from Google explain +1
Google has started rolling this feature out to some users in the US who have turned on the experiment within their Google profile. To do this you need a Google Profile which I assume most of you will have by now. No news on when this will be available in Australia.
How +1 works
As explained above the +1 button will allow users to recommend and share content with their friends. To start with the button will only be available next to search results but soon will start appearing widely across the web on websites. To recommend a search result users will simply click the +1 button next to the title of the search result.
Under the search result users will be able to see who amongst their Social network has liked a search result. Google allows you to create a social network that combines contacts from Google-based services including Gmail, Google Talk, Google Contacts, Google Reader and Google Buzz.
Search Results including +1 results
When logged into Google and performing a search, any results that have been +1’d or any results that you have +1’d will appear amplified.
In the above example you can see how a search result for San Francisco Food Bank has one name attached to it. This will include the names of people within your social network that have +1’d the search result. The result will also show that the total number of others who have +1’d this same search result. If the result has had a large number of +1’s from outside your network you will be told the total number of +1’s giving you a sense of how popular this result is.
This functionality within Google search is going to be very powerful and will ultimately drive considerable traffic to your resorts website. I’m sure we’ve all experienced the vast amount of search results a google search returns, it’s going to be a powerful qualifier seeing what our friends and other people within our social network recommend.
How does this affect AdWords?
Users will also be able to +1 search ads in Google. As per the example below the +1 button appears to the right of the advertisement title.
SearchEngineland reports that Google has informed them that initial tests conclude click through rates are up on ads that have +1s. Other faqs from Google:
- All ads will be getting these buttons
- There’s no way for advertisers to turn them off
- Clicks on the +1 button next to ads do NOT count as a paid ad click
- Advertisers will be able to see stats about which ads are getting the most +1s
Adding +1 to your Resorts website
Google has announced that soon we’ll be able to add the +1 button to our websites. By doing this it will provide uses with the ability to recommend your resorts website in potential guests search results. This will certainly be one change we will quickly implement for our resorts participating in our Boost Direct Marketing program.
The affect on your resorts search engine results
Google has been making steps to move into Social Search for sometime now, first launching Social Search in January 2010. These changes have affected the way results are returned based on your profile. The +1 will certainly have an impact on this, reorganising results based on your social networks +1s. Will sites with +1s be prioritised in Google’s indexing process? Only time will tell.
Adding the +1 button to your resorts website should be a priority for all resort managers. Thinking of ways to encourage your guests and website visitor to +1 your website should now be the top agenda item for all marketing strategy meetings.
Would you like to share any of your ideas?
Some of the above content including screenshots has been taken from http://searchengineland.com/