The Top 5 Reasons I Hate Google+
My little social media secret is that I hate Google+. I'm no fan of the user experience, the appearance of the layout and even the name. Logically, I understand that Google+ isn't an optional aspect of a minimal social media strategy for small businesses. Websites which leverage the +1 button receive 3.5 times the traffic of sites which completely boycott Google+. I understand that Google+ is fundamentally changing the way businesses promote their content and search engine users make choices. That being said, I'm still entitled to believe Pinterest is way cooler than Google+ off the clock. Here are the top reasons I hate Google+.
1. It Makes Me Feel Stupid
I've been a member of major social media networks since Myspace mattered and Facebook was a bare-bones platform reserved for college students. I can generally create an account on a new social media network and figure out the interface in a matter of minutes. Google+ just doesn't offer the same user experience as Facebook, Twitter or Pinterest, and I can easily understand why tech-savvy engineers are among the biggest occupational demographics of this social network.
2. No One Else Cares
Google+ only has around 170 million members and it will be a long time before the network rivals the membership levels of Twitter or Facebook. As of January 2012, the average Google+ user spent just 3.3 minutes daily on the network. Time is precious and social media is inherently time consuming. A successful social media strategy requires a continually evolving toolbox of ways to increase your ROI, and few businesses have the same depth of potential leads as they do on larger social media networks.
3. It's Ugly
One aspect that makes the Google+ interface is unique is the fact that there is just a lot of white space. Some people proclaim the value of the clean appearance, but I can't really get into it. This could be connected to the fact that I've grown up with the busy, information-packed Facebook home page or the ability to change my Twitter background, but the clean interface makes me feel a little underwhelmed.
4. Circles Shmirkles
I can't really hate on the Google's concept of circles, because they allow you to easily control how you share and who you share it with. When correctly operated, circles allow you to hide personal updates from colleagues and avoid boring your relatives with too much information about your business endeavors. The feature is actually pretty awesome, but it also filled with potential for confusion and error. The possibility of over-sharing something that meant to stay in a very specific circle is real, and it can spell disaster. Even brainy Google engineers have experienced the horror of misusing the circles feature.
5. It's Hard to Grammar.
I'm probably just being petty at this point, but I'm a professional writer and clean, attractive grammar really matters to me. I can talk all day about “Twitter's features” and “Facebook's features” but writing “Google+'s features” just looks awkward.
Why I Need to Get Over Myself
No matter how much I may struggle to really adopt Google+, the network is connected to the ruler of major search engines. There are 88 billion searches performed on Google each month, and the +1 feature has a real impact on the results of each of these searches. Google+ gives a real voice to each of their users, allowing them to rate the credibility and value of each piece of content on the web. There has been an explosion of content available on the web, and sifting through the poor content for high-value information best can be a chore. The +1 feature lets experts and web users apply real-time ratings to content, and that is something that even the grouchiest Pinterest fan can really get behind.