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Google+ Vanity URLs Coming Soon

For those of you who use Google+, Google has announced that they will soon be offering vanity URLs. A vanity URL is the ability to have a short URL with your username at the end of it. For example, http://facebook.com/jeradhill instead of a long URL that is typically difficult to remember.

Typically, your Google+ URL looks something like this: https://plus.google.com/112658917943348584591. There have been other companies that have released redirect methods, but nothing from Google.

Here are some thoughts when it comes to choosing a vanity URL.

  • Secure your URL right away!
    Those of us with names that are spelled in a unique way have a bit more time, but if you are Joe Smith, you better secure /joesmith if you want that to be your vanity URL. Even though there are fewer Jerad’s out there then there are those with other spellings, I decided to use my last name to avoid confusion. My last name is easy to say and spell so I went with /jeradhill across all social networks I am a part of.
  • Keep it consistant!
    I have decided to use /jeradhill for all of my usernames to keep it consistant. If somebody can not find me through a search, they can just add /jeradhill to the end of a social network and find me.
  • Make it easy to know what/who you are!
    Some people get so creative with their usernames that nobody knows who they are. On the other hand, some people stick with the one they made when they were 15 and it makes them sound like a kid.  If you are on a social network as yourself, use your name. If you are a fan of something and you believe it will be a lifelong decision, go ahead and use /magnoliafan as your username. If you are a business, use your business name. Make it easy for people to figure out if it is you, a business or a thing.
  • Update your links!
    Google+ will most likely still honor the old links but if you are like me, you like to have your updated links show up in the browser bar when somebody clicks on them.

If you are on Google+, make sure and add me to a circle!

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Google+ Page for your Business

Google+ Page for Business

Google+ Business Pages work just like a Google+ personal page. This is great because Facebook has left much to be desired when it comes to their business offerings. Now you can interact with other Google+ users and post updates to your Google+ page. As time goes by, I am sure that Google will continue to integrate as I am sure that this is just another tool they hope we spend PPC money on.

Start your own Google+ Brand page here.

Visit my Google+ Brand Page: Jerad Hill Photographer on Google+

Google+ Page for Business

Like I said before, Google+ business pages for Brands are just like a personal page. You can add a Google+ Brand Page as a friend to your circle just like you could a person and their posts will show up in the stream under that businesses name. As I write this there is no proof that there is any SEO advantages to posting to your page but I am sure that there will be. Google says that they do not use Facebook or Twitter posts in their ranking decision process but one has to assume that something in their algorithm is paying attention.

One of the most exciting features of having a Google+ page for your brand is the Direct Connect Feature. By placing the + in front of a brand’s name in Google search it will make it easy to drive traffic to your brand’s page. For example, if you do a Google Search for +Google, it will take you to Google’s + Page. Do a search for +Pepsi and it will take you to their Google+ Page. Pretty awesome. Facebook and Twitter do not have that kind of functionality unless you are already on their site.

Check out this short video of that feature in action.

In the future we will probably start seeing Google link up the Google+ Brand pages to your companies Place page, Ad Word account, Youtube and more. You can start to see the bigger picture start to unfold. This is something Google should have done long ago. I am glad to see it rolling out now.

Go grab your Google+ Brand page for your business today.