With all the buzz being generated around Google’s new social networking and information sharing tool, Google+, you could be planning to add this service to your web content in the form of the Google+ button (if you haven’t already). But, as the title to this post suggests, you may want to wait it out a bit.
Google+ is Google’s latest and, as many argue, perhaps its greatest, most solid attempt at building a social network. Several of the service’s early users who have been invited to try out the new tool have been quick to point out its amazing content sharing capabilities… and potential. Then there are those nifty social circles and the video chat “hangouts,” two features which seem both useful and, well, natural at the same time.
All very compelling… But before you jump on the Google+ bandwagon, keep the following points in mind:
- Google is still working out the kinks. Officially, Google+ is still in beta mode, and that means there are plenty of wrinkles to iron out while the service is being tested. Some of the issues that have come up include: a temperamental blocking feature that sometimes works… and sometimes doesn’t; a significant slow down to a site’s load time when the Google+1 button is added; and finally a male-dominated trial group. Though Google says it is working hard to fix the performance issues, and eventually the service will be open to all Google users, it may certainly pay to wait for those things to happen.
- Leave some time for the new network to “catch on.” Before the full potential of Google+ can be realized there has to be a critical mass of followers/users. Though the number of users of the service promises to explode once it is open to the general public, as of yet it is only in a limited trial run with a trial group that may not be representative of the eventual user pool.
- Have you asked yourself: “Do I need to use this?” If you plan on doing more than merely adding the +1 button to your site, then realize that like any social network, the benefits of being on Google+ will be a function of the amount of time and energy you invest into it. Do you have that time and energy available? Though Google has said that it will roll out a business sites function that will be integrated into the network, you need to determine if it will be worth your while.
All in all, Google+ shows a lot of potential as a business networking and collaboration tool in a way that outdoes several of the current top dog social networks, such as Facebook and Twitter. But, it definitely pays to wait a bit till both the service and your business are ready.