There’s a lot to like about Google+ and it has the potential to make a major impact on the future of the Internet. Fortunately for Google, it has the world’s largest search engine to integrate this product with immediately, giving publishers a significant reason to implement +1 within their sites. Google accounts for more than 50 percent of incoming traffic on most sites, while Facebook is currently running a distant second in referring traffic (more then 10 percent of our own traffic comes from Facebook). For now, the new product is being offered as an experimental service, although there’s no doubt the company plans on making it a widespread feature.
Google’s previous social attempts have been unmitigated train wrecks, if we’re being completely honest. Open Social failed because Google couldn’t get Facebook and other social networks to buy into the idea of a shared social identity. Google Wave missed the target by not being useful enough to attract any users. Google Buzz freaked people out by naively overstepping its bounds on privacy.
So, when Google unveiled its latest social experiment last week — called Google+ — I was extremely skeptical. Still, Facebook is so malignant in terms of privacy and such a mess to use and configure that I was more than happy to give Google+ a try. I just expected that it would be a speed-dating relationship like most of my product reviews and destined to last no more than a few weeks at the most.
Google’s Page upbeat after 3 months on job: 10 million on Google+
After just two weeks in closed beta, it already has 10 million users. Still, it’s far from perfect. I’ve put together my list of the top 10 things Google needs to fix or add in Google+. Take a look at the list and then jump into the discussion and argue with me by adding the fixes that you think deserve more attention in Google+.
Here are just a snapshot of how successful Google+ is so far:
- Over 10 million people have joined Google+
- Over 1 billion items have been shared and received in a single day
- The +1 button is used on average 2.3 billion times a day
On Google+ it is a lot easier to find friends and people to follow than any social network that has been built so far. And, with Circles, you can divided them into groups and then easily jump between the various streams of your Circles. However, there is also the big “Stream,” which aggregates all of the people you have in Circles and this is the default view you see on Google+. The one feature missing here is the ability to mute a person from the Stream (while still being able to see their updates in their Circle). You can mute individual posts from the Stream, but you can’t currently mute a person. This is badly needed so that you can stay connected to interesting people but not have the overly chatty people monopolize your Stream.