The Reason Behind Google+ Shutdown And Its Impact On SEO
Anything related to Google is always big news. When the news of a possible shutdown of Google+ came up, there was a huge uproar. People started to fear that they would lose all data stored; it would impact their SEO and digital marketing strategies etc. But is there something to fear?
To get an answer or rather reassurance, let us look into the possible causes for this sudden decision to shut down Google+
• The security flaw: Google discovered a bug in its system way back in 2018 that they supposed could have led to a data breach. Though Google talked about it as a security flaw in a recently introduced API, it is generally assumed that over 500,000 had their profile information exposed without permission. Google, however, claimed that the breach was harmless and nobody gained access to user information.
• Fewer takers for Google+: G+ was introduced as a social media platform to rival Facebook and Twitter. But despite having dedicated communities, loyal users, etc., the total number of users was always eclipsed by that of the other social platforms. According to an SEO company in Delhi, this could be another possible reason for its shutdown.
Effect of the shutdown on SEO
What needs to be analyzed, however, is whether and how this shutdown of G+ would affect your business. The answer lies in whether the social signals have used Google+. It is a fact that social signals play an important part in driving awareness for a website and creating an authority to better its SERP rankings. For Google+ the average shares for the top rank holding website are slightly higher. This higher ranking is further co-related with the high shares gained in other social media websites like Pinterest, Twitter, Facebook, and LinkedIn. Shutting down G+ is like losing a link in this chain. This might affect your website to some extent.
While you might argue that all websites would be losing the same link, it would seem prudent to mention here that the top-ranking micro-content generally has the highest G+ shares. However, despite rumors about Google using G+ as ranking signals to search for quality and rankings, Google has always vehemently denied this.
Thus if we assume that Google updated its algorithms properly and G+ signals had no influence on rankings then, all websites would be equally affected. With all website-related G+ data disappearing, the effect would be uniform across websites. This could lead to some websites getting slightly impacted but overall websites would not be greatly affected.
Effect on my social media strategy
To understand what changes to bring about in your social media strategy, it is best to discuss it out with an SEO Consultant. G+ might not interact with the Google search engine, but it would be best for you to:
• Immediately download and migrate data from G+
• Put more focus on presence and awareness-building campaigns
• Research which social media platform would be appropriate for you and
• Try to increase coverage on other social media platforms and reach new audiences.
However, before migrating data from G+, you should reach out and inform your current followers about other platforms that you would be available on. This will help to keep your follower base intact to some extent.