Hashtags In Google+ and Google Search Results
Generally speaking, hashtags have been gaining momentum across the world of social networking and affection networks both large and small. Twitter, Facebook, Pinterest, and Instagram are all well-known for their hashtag support. Perhaps it shouldn’t be so surprising to learn that not only has Google integrated hashtags into their star social network Google+, but it has also included support for them in its search engine results!
In an effort to tie things together from across as many Google platforms as possible while still keeping things relevant to the current state of the web, Google has taken what seems to be a very important step toward the future of social integration with search. This is just one more indication of the growing importance social media will play in the future of search. RankPop suggests integration of a strong social presence for any SEO campaign.
How It Works
So, Google is working with hashtags now, cool right?
But how exactly does it work, and where does Google+ fit in? Essentially it works like this: When you use Google’s search engine to search for a hashtag, a set of relevant Google+ results will appear to the right of the organic results. You’ll only be able to see posts that are public, or that have been shared with you. Links will then be available to help you search for the same hashtag on other social sites, and of course you’ll see organic search results for the hashtag as well.
What It Could Mean For Marketers?
For those working closely with social media for marketing as well as individuals focusing on general SEO, this could be an important development. Google+ account activity and maintenance could become increasingly important as Google’s support of hashtags as searchable in their own right causes more prominence to be given to Google+ posts in search results.
It’s not only become about creating strong content ie. infographic, video etc. but then properly classifying that content. This change puts Google+ results in the space formerly occupied by sponsored links, so thing could be an even bigger incentive to focus more on Google+ as more “traditional” forms of search advertising are taking a back seat to Google’s social darling.
Google+ is definitely a network to consider joining on its own merits, but there are a few very good reasons to sign up now that weren’t there before. Of course before you sign up or devote more resources to Google+, always consider how it can affect your strategy as a whole. While jumping on the next big thing can seem attractive it’s always best to think about the big picture for your brand – this straddles the line between social media management and SEO / SEM so make sure everyone on your team gets a chance to weigh in before making any strategy changes.
Hashtag support is growing by leaps and bounds, and has now begin to cross directly into search. This is something that could affect all of your content marketing efforts from here on out as well.
Lots of food for thought!
History Of The Hashtag
Here is a great Infographic from BlurGroup depicting the short history of the Hashtag.
We’d love to know what you think about Google’s integration of hashtags into search results and the role that Google+ plays in this development. Share your thoughts with us here in the comments please!