Little-Known Gem of Google+ Engagement
There is one powerful, but often overlooked feature on Google+
TL;DR: Pages can leave reviews for other pages.
I spotted this while browsing through +Dejan SEO page and noticed it had a blank “Reviews” section. To be honest I’m pretty sure this feature has been around for a while, I just never thought about its potential.
We cross paths with many different businesses (e.g. content writers, graphic artists, computer shops, stationery stores, hosting providers, software, cleaners…etc) and page to page reviews give us the ability to leave testimonials for other businesses. It’s a B2B review for a B2B relationship.
The process is straightforward. I took some screenshots as I went through my first page to page review.
Firstly, log in as a page, visit Local and search for a business name. Once you click on the business you’ll be viewing it as a page and not as an individual user (that’s the key step).
Click on the little pencil icon to start the review. A review prompt will come up with star rating and review text field.
Otherwise simply hit done. Note, it may take a few minutes before it’s visible on the reviewed page.
Here’s how it looks like: https://plus.google.com/109177017896868346562/about
- Link Graph: Extra link signals for your page.
- Social Graph: Disclosing a commercial relationship
- Referrals: Traffic to your page and website
- Brand: Visibility and recognition
- Reciprocity: Receive reviews in return
Each time you make an effort to leave a review on somebody’s page you get a link back to your Google+ page, further exposure and visibility for your business. Additionally, you’re feeding Google valuable semantic / relationship data. Even if it doesn’t represent a direct signal at this time (not claiming it either is or isn’t) Google will find use for this information, much like they do with local citations and partner-like link patterns between related websites. Finally, and most importantly – reciprocity! You may receive a review in return, adding to the strength and reputation of your Google+ page and its organic search performance.
This could of course backfire. Negative reviews could be sparked up between competing pages, but I don’t see this getting out of hand as a negative B2B reviews almost automatically imply mutual action. Unless we’re talking about fake profiles, which again doesn’t make much sense considering the same can be done through personal profiles (fake or not). Speaking of fake reviews, Google’s getting better, but still has a lot of work to do.
Take photographs of places you visit (or interact with) and publish them with your review or as a public place photo contribution. This can result in profile/page visibility, traffic and bring new followers on Google+.
Here’s an example page where my test photo ended up being the featured/default image for a local cafe:
How do you get traffic from this? Well, when you click on the image you go to a full image version showing author’s profile:
Five thousand views? Not bad for just one photo! Now imagine if you were a local photographer and you did hundreds.