Google has launched a new search feature: +1. It’s a mystery to me. Is it a new networking site? What’s this? Is this a global search engine? Is this even a form of social interaction? Do we need it?
Google Wants Users to Like Google Search Engine Results
Every Google search outcome now has a +1 icon beside it if you are logged into your Gmail account. You can +1 a search outcome if you find it convenient or if you just like the related site. According to Google, by giving a finding a +1, you’re essentially endorsing it. Sites that have a lot of +1’s on results are more intriguing.
Is Google + 1 Social?
You’ll be able to see everything your friends have +1’d, which should give a specific search result more weight. If you haven’t already done so, these small +1’s will assist you to sort through the countless sites that appear in Google’s search results. Consider what it would be like if your closest mate found an interesting piece and gave it a +1. You’ll likely click on that if you see it again in the future but do you really need this. Google will tell all this to convince us that we must utilize the + 1 feature, but it is not helpful.
The Google +1 initiative was hailed as Google’s answer to Facebook in its early stages. You can use the +1 system to demonstrate your support for a product or service in a similar fashion to how you use Facebook Likes or Digg Digs.
Google +1 Will Help Google to Target Ads Better
With the use of Google’s data from your +1’s of search engine results, Google can know more of you and better serve you and will be able to target their ads better. Similar to how Google provides free Google 411s to enhance their speech recognition software and Google +1 helps their ad delivery system, this is data research disguised as an option.
Where Will It Lead?
Google hasn’t finished with the +1 feature yet. They’ve learned from their earlier failures with Google Buzz and Google Wave, in which they overhyped the projects and caused them to fail spectacularly. By starting small, with something like a basic +1 icon that is only accessible on Google engine search results, they will be able to discreetly go about regular business while gradually adding to it (by +1-ing straight from a page, from Chrome, from applications, and so on).
Google +1 is another indication that Google is attempting to transition into a more friendly search engine. Every one of those +1s that they collect and the store will not only assist Google to improve their search results, but they’ll also make them increasingly relevant to a user’s social circle. Even when the Internet becomes increasingly clogged with cobwebs, having friends manually +1 the finest sites helps to keep Google from slipping further behind Twitter and Facebook in terms of social sharing.