It seems as though the entire web has gone social. There are a ton of thoughts on this subject, and the purpose of this post isn’t to do an expose’ on the effects of Google +1 or facebook likes. However, one undeniable result of Google’s shift towards the social side of things is a crucial element for every marketer worth their weight in gold: Social PROOF.
There’s just something about our nature that is attracted to follow the crowd. Not only when it comes to making decisions, but when it comes to measuring the success of others. When it comes to making decisions (especially about a purchase), few selling tactics have as powerful of an effect as a long list of satisfied customer testimonials. But when it comes to measuring success and getting others to jump on your bandwagon, the tool of choice is social response in the form of a vote.
Take a look at some of the web’s top social bookmarking sites like Digg.com, or StumbleUpon.com. When something get’s voted for enough times, it gets picked up and syndicated all across the web. A post that experiences what some have called the “Digg effect” (server crushing traffic from reaching Digg’s first page), goes through a snow ball effect. The more people who Digg, the more people that see the story, which in turn leads to more Diggs…You get the point.
Then came the Facebook “Like”. The same snow ball principle is at play, it’s just a much steeper hill with more force pushing the ball. The viral effect of the Facebook “like” has made many people overnight internet celebrities, given YouTube videos millions of views, and increased online businesses overall fan bases (and value) by untold amounts.
The question everyone is asking, is how will the Google +1 button effect business owners and websites? Well, in an attempt to keep good on my promise to not discuss all the stuff you’ve probably read 1,000 blog posts about already (SERP changes, etc…), I’d like to point out the one change that could make you more money as a flipper: Social proof.
If success is measured by following the crowd, then having a high Google +1 count on your website’s content automatically infuses more perceived value into it. It tells potential buyers “people like my website.” Which gives them more confidence to make you an offer because the crowd is telling them it’s a good property to invest in.
#1 rankings are great…But being #5 with 10X as many +1’s as the guy who’s #1 in the SERPS tells potential buyers (and searchers) that your site is the site everyone likes the most.
So, the moral of the story is if you aren’t currently utilizing Google’s +1 button to add perceived value to your content, perhaps you should. You may even start seeing it in our posts here at FlipWebsites.com!