Google+ Profiles for Businesses in the SERPs

by Dana Lookadoo on July 5, 2011

Google Plus is one more opportunity for businesses to “capture” a search result. Yes, Google+ profiles are showing in the SERPs, even though Google has not officially released Plus “Places” pages for businesses. Check out the the search results for “rustybrick google+” (as of July 3, 2011) below:

RustyBrick's Google+ Profile in the SERPs

RustyBrick's Google+ Profile in the SERPs

Google+ Business Profiles

Search Engine Land was also one of the first to get their “business” profile on Google+ without waiting for the official business “Pages” to launch. View a screenshot of their profile page in the “Google+ “Pages” Coming For Businesses” post in which they covered the topic (and need) for enabling businesses to more easily setup their profile.

Sure enough, the Search Engine Land Google+ profile is helping them blanket the search results (as of July 3, 2011):

Search Engine Land's Google+ Profile in the SERPs

Search Engine Land's Google+ Profile in the SERPs

Google SERP Snippet

Let’s break down the snippet of how Google Plus results display. Below are listings for RustyBrick and Search Engine Land as shown in the SERPs:

Google Plus SERP Snippet

Google Plus SERP Snippet for RustyBrick & Search Engine Land

  1. The title is pulled from your Google Plus profile name.
    “Profile Name – Google+”
  2. The page name (URL) is the Google Plus ID.
    “https://plus.google.com/your profile ID”
  3. The date appears to be the date your Google Plus profile was created, and the description is from the Introduction field where you provide some information about who you are.

Takeaway

Put on your SEO hat, and optimize accordingly.

Google Plus ID

The URL for each Google Plus ID is one big ugly number. Look at RustyBrick’s Google+ profile below:

URL for RustyBrick's Google+ Profile

URL for RustyBrick's Google+ Profile

I’m adding the ability to customize the URL to my Google Plus wish list. (Heck, Facebook allows businesses to customize their fan page after 100 <correction on 7/9/11> 25 fans.)

Dear Google, please allow profiles to customize their URLs after 100 people have added them to their Circles?

And if you grant this wish, please implement a 301 redirect.

TIP: Google Plus Short URL

You can (and should immediately) grab your company’s Google+ short url once you are on Google Plus.

Google Plus Short URL

Create a Google Plus Short URL

Obvious SEO Benefit

It goes without saying… the benefit of your company profile display in the SERPs is a key to online visibility! You simply need to be there (period).

Google was quoted in explaining the SEO benefit of the upcoming Google+ Places pages:

Once these pages/profiles arrive they will probably operate in a way that’s pretty similar to Facebook Pages, but with some Google SEO benefits. They will be indexed, “followable” and individual updates or posts can be +1′dmuch or all of which will be fed back into search results and rankings.

Yo! Did you catch that? “…fed back into the search results and rankings.

Make sure you check ” Help others find my profile in search results” under Search Visibility in your profile settings so you can be found:

Google+ Search Visibility

Enable Google+ Search Visibility

Google Plus offers businesses with yet another opportunity to be seen and to engage.

What if you are not in Google Plus?

Don’t wait for your invite.

Do you have other examples of other businesses on Google Plus already? Have any + tips? Please share.

Yo!  Yo!  Please share & engage if you like this page:

{ 16 comments… read them below or add one }

Levi July 5, 2011

I just started seeing these too. I wonder how long it will be before Google+ profiles completely take over where FB business pages currently rank in the SERPs. Thoughts?

Reply

Dana Lookadoo July 5, 2011

Levi, given the level of competition between Google and Facebook, I believe we have a fight on our hands. Companies will need to be on Google+.

Will they have the ROI of Facebook? I cannot even imagine that’s possible. ;-)

Reply

Dana Lookadoo July 5, 2011

NOTE: Our Google profile is temporarily not visible to others. Apparently the exclamation points in Yo! Yo! violated community standards. We are awaiting reinclusion as it’s being reviewed.

Reply

Ryan Miller July 5, 2011

I’ll be excited to see what an official Business Google+ Profile looks like.

Awesome catch with gplus.to! Hopefully official customized URLs will eventually come down the pipeline.

Reply

Dana Lookadoo July 5, 2011

How do I +1 your comment for custom URLs? :-)

I, too, am excited to see how official business Google+ Pages will work out. Facebook will have some competition!

Reply

Travis July 5, 2011

Yet another reason that their lack of support for Google Apps customers is appalling.

Reply

Dana Lookadoo July 5, 2011

Google and customer support? I think they are getting better in some respects, but sometimes I just want to pick up the phone and call someone or at least have an email address. It will be interesting to see how long it takes for them to unblock the Yo! Yo! SEO profile. Guess that will be content for another blog post!

Reply

Travis Campbell July 5, 2011

Thanks for putting this together Dana. I’m wondering if there is value in link building to your Google profile. Any thoughts, info you are hearing on that?

-Travis

Reply

Dana Lookadoo July 5, 2011

Travis, I would see value in building authority of one’s Google Profile/Plus account. They are surely using it as entity association. (Think it’s time we implement rel=”author” to our bios, for example.) The jury is still out on Google’s plans for business accounts. But just like Google Places, best practices for SEO still apply. The additional layers they added are citations and social signals. In addition, companies want to build importance of their social properties to blanket the SERPs.

Once our Yo! Yo! SEO account gets unblocked and “in” Google Plus, it will definitely be added as a social space. We’ll link to it from the sidebar along with Twitter, etc.

P.S. I did add a link to RustyBrick and Search Engine Land Google+ profiles. Surely, links are a signal that will have some relevance.

Reply

Travis Campbell July 5, 2011

Thanks for your take on linkbuilding to profiles. These are fascinating days, as Google finally revamps many product to integrate and put full force behind Plus. Many might not like the name, but you gotta respect the strategy and execution Google has exhibited thus far.

Now if they would just open some more invite slots… my “non-technie” wife is begging me to help her get in. :-)

-Travis

Reply

Dana Lookadoo July 5, 2011

Travis, you are spot on! These ARE fascinating days, and it’s moving at rapid pace. Admittedly, I was ready to not like Google+, but I’ve grown to like it. Time and the SERPs will tell more…

I’m laughing about your wife! My husband showed up as an “association,” and I added him to a circle. His response, “How did Google know about me. We are not connected online!”

Reply

Bas van den Beld July 6, 2011

Good find. It does make sense, since the Google Profiles were always findable in the SERPS too. I think linkbuilding the profiles will then also help. At least, that helped with the Profiles.

Reply

Dana Lookadoo July 6, 2011

Bas, thanks for the input! It sounds like all we will need to do is change the links to the profiles as they will become Google+ IDs! ;-)

Reply

Buddy Elf July 9, 2011

Please check your facts before posting… you only need 25 fans to get a custom name for a business page. But, that’s SEO blogging for you… they just regurgitate stuff other blogs say without checking for facts.

Reply

Dana Lookadoo July 9, 2011

Buddy, thanks for the correction on the number of fans to get a vanity URL. It used to be 100. I stand corrected without regurgitating. ;-) It is now 25. Cool! (That’s what happens when one focuses too much on the rapid changes in SEO and not enough on Facebook marketing…)

Reply

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