Google: Google+ User Growth Will Shock People

Predictions made in the meantime

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Google: Google+ User Growth Will Shock People
[ Social Media]

Google+ VP, Product, Bradley Horowitz hosted a “hangout in real life” in Ann Arbor, which was broadcast via Google+s Hangouts on Air feature.

The hangout consisted of a group of Google+ power users sitting in a room discussing the service. According to tech writer Mike Elgan, Horowitz “hinted that upcoming announcements about G+ user growth will shock everybody.”

Some are already shocked at how many users have adopted Google+. Are you? Let us know.

GlobalWebIndex put out data last week indicating that Google+ hit 150 million active users. Some have shown some skepticism around the data. As my colleague Josh Wolford noted, several things have happened with Google+ that could explain the increase in users: YouTube got more integrated with Google+. Pages for brands and celebrities were launched. Google+ signups were built into Android Ice Cream Sandwich (which is on the Galaxy Nexus).

This holiday greeting was created by Google+ users for Google to show their appreciation for Google+. It’s just an example of the passion that some do have for Google’s social network, particularly Hangouts.

That passion was very evident last month at the BlogWorld and New Media Expo in Los Angeles. Consider that this is a conference for the online content industry: blogs, social media and video. Of course I wasn’t able to attend every session and speak to every person there, but I heard a lot more discussion about Google+ than even Facebook or Twitter. Some of that is probably because it’s the new kid on the block, but the talk included some pretty bold statements from some pretty big names in social media.

Guy Kawasaki, for example, said, “I think Google+ is to Facebook what Mac is to Windows. Think about that for a second.”

Chris Brogan discussed its importance to search, a topic I’m sure many WebProNews readers have considered a great deal already.

Even Technorati’s State of the Blogosphere report, which was introduced at the conference, indicated that 66% of professional bloggers already use Google+.

Keep in mind that all of this excitement at BlogWorld was generated before Google even launched the brand pages.

They are advertising Google+ on TV too:

Tom Anderson (you know, Tom from MySpace), who uses Google+ pretty regularly, called the 150 million number “a bit silly.” In a Google+ update, he says:

I can tell you from experience with large scale audiences (over @ MySpace) that it’s nowhere near that number in terms of “activity” defined by any normal definition of “active” (sometimes companies try to say an “active” user is one that logged in once within a month, sometimes once a day, etc). Whatever the actual number is, it doesn’t really matter because Google has a history of “winning” and here’s how they do it: speed, or, you might want to call it efficiency.

Elgan points to a new post from Paul Allen, who regularly puts out estimates about Google+ user growth. According to him, Google+ has passed 62 million users, and is adding 625,000 new users per day. He predicts 400 million users by the end of 2012.

That would be about half of what Facebook has at this point, which would be incredibly impressive for a year and a half of existence. That would indeed, be “shocking”.

He shares this growth chart:

Google Plus Growth

The number of active users isn’t really the important thing. If they have Google+ accounts, that means they have Google accounts, and that’s really what it’s all about. It doesn’t matter if they’re sharing updates with Circles or “hanging out”. It means Google has them as user with a profile that they can push access to all of their other products to.

Any way you slice it, I think it’s safe to say that Google+ has already proven to be a bigger hit than past social media efforts from the company like Buzz and Wave.

Is it on the path to Facebook-like numbers? It certainly has gotten off to a good start. What do you think? Let us know in the comments.

Google: Google+ User Growth Will Shock People
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  • http://www.milligan.co.za Mark Milligan

    I must admit, I prefer Google + to Facebook. Just wish most of my friends would take the leap.

    • http://www.webpronews.com/ Chris Crum

      That is the main thing it is lacking.

    • Joel Buckland

      I have to agree but the lack on content is stopping many of my friends joining in. I was hoping to use a service such as hootsuite to update my twitter, facebook and google+ at once. Then to start releasing updates for google+ers only to encourage the switch amongst my community. Sadly until people can do things like this free I doubt we’ll get much more content being published to Google+

      • http://www.webpronews.com/ Chris Crum

        I actually find the content to be the most appealing part of Google+. I don’t have a lot of my real-life friends on there, but it’s a good way to follow people you find interesting that share interesting content. This is very similar to how I use Twitter. If my friends eventually join then great, but it’s still useful without them, and that’s probably why it’s working.

  • http://www.brickmarketing.com/search-engine-optimization-firm.htm Nick Stamoulis

    Google+ may not be the “Facebook killer” it was deemed initially, but it’s still early in the game. Google has obviously made a commitment to the product. It will be interesting to see what happens in 2012 and if it becomes more mainstream.

    • http://twitter.com/parveshsareen Parvesh Sareen

      The time, the google+ has born, has been surprising the community with one or other announcements. Though most of them were favorable as Google + has been assigned weighing factor in search engine results, and it has been made mandatory to be in google+ regime intentionally or not intentionally.
      But again the Facebook has been a part of our lives and more of habitual daily routines.
      As said 400 million users by the end of 2012 for google+ , i agree, but then again facebook will not be sitting quite and will most probably exploit the vulnerable situations to keep its astonishing control.
      Lets see what the future is for these .. and let us be in mood of New Year Celebrations rather than be a part of this intriguing never ending wars.. :)

  • http://www.bhawanigarg.com Bhawani Garg

    ya…100% correct ..and btw you write very well :)

  • http://www.deverix.com Dev Horn

    Look at the first response by Mark Milligan:
    “I must admit, I prefer Google + to Facebook. Just wish most of my friends would take the leap.”

    NONE of my friends has suggested that I use Google+. I rarely hear people talk about it. Something does not jive, with these huge numbers. Maybe people are getting G+ when they sign up for other Google services, but most of us have a large social network on Facebook & LinkedIn, so the real question is WHY DO WE NEED GOOGLE+? No one answers, that – it’s just Google so people assume it will be a “winner”. I do not buy the huge numbers.

    • http://www.webpronews.com/ Chris Crum

      A lot of people have wanted an alternative to Facebook for a while. Also, despite many similarities, they do offer different user experiences, and will continue to compete on features.

      For users of other Google products, the continued integration will make Google+ more useful in a lot of cases.

      • http://socialsavvydivas.com Sasha Rodriguez

        Chris – I wonder if the people pushing the idea of an alternative to Facebook were mostly business owners or the consumers themselves?

        I see the majority of users being either tech heads, business owners, or celebrities. The everyday consumer really hasn’t seen the value of switching to another social network provider, especially when the people they engage with daily aren’t using Google +. It ends up feeling like duplication in a time when everyone wants to be efficient.

  • http://www.mycashforums.com matt

    yes I agree it’s a great hang out nice videos thanks for sharing

  • http://socialsavvydivas.com Sasha Rodriguez

    I have read all the comments and agree that many people may “have” accounts but haven’t adopted using Google Plus, but I’m surprised no one has mentioned one important truth.

    Most people once they like something and find their way around a service, unless the new service makes it easier and worthwhile to switch – a lot of times they won’t, or they’ll just take their time making the switch.

    Also, what I’m seeing and hearing from business owners is the fact that they find themselves repeating the same thing they post on Facebook, on Google + and they don’t receive any feedback. And that’s simply because the interactivity and engagement amongst users is lacking.

    Here’s an idea (unless it’s already avaialble) – create a Google + comment feature we can start embedding on our blog posts similar to what we have on Facebook so our users are then guided to start using Google +

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    Von kleinen PV-Anlagen bis zu großen Freiland Solarparks reinigen wir alle PV- und Solaranlagen hoch Professionell und zu fairen Preisen, denn Ihre Rendite ist unser Ziel.

  • http://www.watsons-streetworks.com Steve Watson

    If Google+ isn’t like FaceBook or LInkedIn and people who like it compare it to Twitter, it will be a looser. The people that I know are interested in a better FaceBook, either because FaceBook gets better (hasn’t been happening, yet) or an alternative. I got on G+ because of business and trying to “wrap” more contact/content under the Google banner. But G+ has been a complete disappointment for me – a few people flooding my feed with usless cr-p.

  • http://www.adovationz.co.nz/catalogww.htm Digby Geen

    I doubt it very much if Google+ has anywhere near that many users.

    If they did, they would be announcing it in the main stream press.

    There is really only room for one social media site, the idea is that all of your friends are on it.

    Not spread amongst ten other sites!

  • http://www.epalmspringsrealestate.com Abraham Baghbodorian

    I totally agree with Guy Kawasaki when he said “I think Google+ is to Facebook what Mac is to Windows. Think about that for a second.”

    I love Google +

  • http://www.stansgeneralstore.net Stan Chudzik Jr

    I just scratched the surface of Google+ so I can’t really comment on the ease of use or popularity. I believe the true number of users will catch up with what is being reported. Face(plant)book will be around for a while despite itself. Google+ seems like a good alternative incorporating business/social networking, or at least that is how I am approaching it. My Facebook “friends” are not tuned in to the business aspect of networking. (I believe they are more concerned with who is making what for dinner).

  • Dick Smith

    This article was delivered by WebProNews with a sh**load of ads and I almost couldn’t find the link because of. Another reason why I’m becomming less and less a fan of anything Google.

  • http://www.mobile-friendlywebsites.com Ros

    I didn’t like the change to the ticker at the right-hand side and I certainly do not like the new Timeline – too much info to plough through. Maybe it’s time to actually USE my Google+ page instead of waiting for the shift!

  • http://smmseo.com smmseo

    I revamped my scifipop.com website a couple of weeks ago and had 27 followers on FB to start, while zero followers on G+ (started the G+ page for it with the revamp). I put the Like and Add to Circle buttons right next to each other. 2 weeks later, Google+ has 72 fans while FB has 47, and this, with the Like button on top. Not a lot, but it’s kinda telling in a sense. I LOVE the post to public option on G+ and being able to get out of my circle zone to see the public stream. The public stream also helps to get people to connect to my page that they wouldn’t otherwise know about. Also, I’ve actually had people +1 my posts, share and comment, while I can’t say the same for FB.So yes, I can see good growth with G+ adoption.

  • http://www.LAokay.com Steven G

    I see the major flaw in Google+ is that it doesn’t play well with others. How come I can’t use Facebook from within Google+ yet? How come I can’t post to twitter from within Google+ yet? While all the social networking sites are slowly starting to incorporate each others feeds into their own social networking site, Google is busy trying to outfox the competition. If Google were smart they would be partnering up with all these social networking sites instead of trying to alienate themselves.

    • http://vaporizersale.com Vaporizer

      I agree, Google just wants a strangle hold on social networking, they aren’t interested in being anyone’s “friend”, so to speak. I suspect their limited integration with other social services and subtle restrictions will continue.

      I just started using Google+ and I think it’s great but a lot of people who use Facebook ONLY visit Facebook and do literally nothing else on line. How many Google+ users out there can say that? I would guess that most Google+ users probably already have several social network accounts, including Facebook. So until the day your grandparents have two Google+ accounts each I don’t think FB has anything to worry about.

  • http://www.corporatehippies.com.au craig

    I like google + but I have no friends that use it.
    Is the problem that G+ is for the tech savy crowd whereas facebook is more trailer park???
    I don’t think that there will be a mass take up of use (as opposed to the sign ups) of G+ until they offer something that makes it a must have for the masses.

    • lul

      “Is the problem that G+ is for the tech savy crowd whereas facebook is more trailer park???”

      WHY is that a problem? i want to be on a service with cool and creative people and i don’t think i’m alone in that. most of my real friends on fb are pretty boring ONLINE… bets are that any link they might stumble upon is dead old to me. they don’t give much feedback. one liners or “likes”.

      these semi-lame late adopters are not necessary for a service. i can log in once a week on fb and i’m up to date within minutes.

      the cool people drive people to services in general… not late adopters.

  • http://googleplussocializer.com Valentin Biaggio

    Google Plus will overtake Facebook! And Google Plus Socializer is the best tool to do that!

  • Bill

    Google+ is for people who are gullible. It is a privacy invading tool to develop a life long profile of your behavior which will be used against you by Google. Google has become the consummate Internet EVIL! Google+ is simply garbage.

  • Richard

    I wonder how many others would like to know what and why Google+ is? It made no sense to me. We have the Internet. To me it’s like another brand new strip mall sitting empty where no-one wants to lease and the traffic going by is on it’s way to where it’s comfortable shopping already. It’s like they may have had a good idea but, before they started, they ruined it in much the same way as they’re ruining gmail with themes.

    • lul

      cool, go and have a multipart videoconference on fb… or maybe just try to _find_ anything pertaining to your interest on there.

      fb does close friends/keep in touch stuff alright but anything beyond that is bad imo. facebook fatigue is real… people are realizing that most of their friends aren’t all that interesting.

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  • http://badcreditratingrepair.com Jackie K Anderson

    I’m enjoying the significant exposure that I’ve garnered by being a part of Google+.

    I believe a lot of people will be caught off guard to the mad exodus from Facebook over to Google+.

    This is a great opportunity to get ahead of the trend and ride the tidal wave of success right along with Google. Count me in!

  • http://www.herbs-treatandtaste.blogspot.com leva

    I think that Google+ is certain to grow rapidly because Google drives the web whether we like it or not. Facebook has major privacy problems which negatively affect users in Europe who are more concerned with such things than others it would seem. Also if you have a web site then it makes sense to be a member of Google+ simply because of what this can do for your SERPS places.
    Yes, Google+ will grow rapidly over 2012.

  • http://blog.webpro.in Bharati Ahuja

    As social media signals get integrated with
    search results the importance of Google+ will increase with time. I think Google+ initiative is mainly aimed at enhancing the quality of search results which is very much affected due to the mal practices because of link building and
    content spamming.

    On a wider perspective Google is trying to converge all the data from other Google owned platforms on Google+ and all these signals will finally
    affect the search results. Google+ is not only a social media platform it is going to be the consolidation of your overall online presence quantifying your online personality.

    IMHO Google is currently equipping itself with all the necessary social and search integration
    features which will be applied suddenly like the Panda Update was applied to the algorithm for content.

    The +1s from your friends and associates, The Ripples generated by the circles you are in and the people in your circles should be able to give
    the necessary vote and the WOM factor which they thought they would get when they introduced the PageRank Technology. But, the PageRank got spammed by the so called link builders

    As SEO is always evolving, this social and search integration should take search results at a
    different level as this time Google does not have to depend on any third party to give them the data They have control and ownership of all the data they will be using to integrate the social signals with search for the web or mobile or local. Yes, Search is all about SOCIAL, LOCAL & MOBILE which is very well being spun and interwoven by Google into the fabric of Google+

    More in detail on :

    Google+ Is Coming Along Riding On The Social Wave…

    • http://twitter.com/parveshsareen Parvesh Sareen

      I want to speak contrary to the assertions of you. Well the spam is not the copyrights that you have assigned to linkbuilders and content writers. Spam can be made in any shape , in any form. Just drawing your attention to one of the techniques that spammers had been using recently, thousands, lacs of Google +1s in a certain amount.
      Well spammers can exploit any area and if you are talking about link building, then a quality link building is the base of every website and every link is counted as a precious vote.
      See , you yourself are promoting your blog here 😛

      • http://twitter.com/parveshsareen Parvesh Sareen

        Please have a look http://www.seobook.com/archives/001792.shtml

      • http://blog.webpro.in Bharati Ahuja

        Agreed quality links are a valuable asset which are a result of quality footprints made as a part of the web journey of the site.

        Sharing a link here or on any forum or social media which adds to the discussion is a part of the conversation.

        What I am pointing out is the unethical way of getting links and adding thin content for the sake of adding content.

  • http://www.howtodealwithworkplacebullies.me jeannette

    Good morning,
    I have a Google and a G+ profile, and 3 webistes, and still waiting to experence the benefit.

  • http://www.gatfol.com Sally at Gatfol

    I am not surprised! Google has made it so easy for its existing users to set up a Google+ account, although whether users are active on Google+ after setting up, is still debatable. What I do know, is that if these statistics are to be believed – then Facebook will not “like” them…and will be seriously plotting their next move!

  • http://www.freedomoffshore.com/offshoreLLCpackage.html Offshore LLC formation

    My viewpoint is that there is a huge flaw in Google+ because it is not compatible with others. Why can’t I use Facebook within Google+ by now? Why can I not post to twitter from the inside of Google+ by now? The other social networking sites are slowly seeking compatibility with their own social networking site, but Google seems to be concentrating on conquering the competition inside of really seeking what is best for the user who is us. If Google wanted to really help us then they would be seeking connections with other social networking websites in place of going it alone.

  • http://shop.lacompanyonline.com La Company Online

    I think Google+ is OK. Its good for some things and not so good for others. Really it depends on what kind of user you ask. I can’t say I use it too much myself.

  • http://www.pondoksprei.com Pondok Sprei

    Google+ grows fast in Indonesia, it reaches more than 60 million users within 5 months after its launching.

  • http://www.bingokul.se/ Bingokul

    Were are all those 150 million users I haven’t even heard of a real person who is a user…

    Are they counting gmail users?

  • Eddie Morgan

    I am very impressed with Google plus integrated suite of products and the hangout feature is one of my favorites. It is just hard to get other people to adopt new systems. Google plus works so much better for people that do things unlike Facebook where people just talk about things. I would love to see some more thoughts and specifically examples of having all the features that Google provides playing together.

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