By Matthew Kynaston
January 27th 2012
Social Media Optimisation News
This week, engineers from the largest social media competitors to Google (Facebook, Twitter and MySpace) produced a software add-on for browsers. It effectively contravenes the changes to Google’s search results, which seemingly rank Google+ pages higher than they should. The software has been ironically named, “Don’t Be Evil”, after one of Google’s first unofficial mottos.
The software is available as a free bookmark(let) download from http://www.focusontheuser.org/.
How to use
It is important to remember that Social Results and the alterations are only available in the US, however like most things we should see the changes implemented in the UK in the not too distant future.
The bookmarklet is very simple to use; once you have it in your toolbar, conduct a search on Google then take notice of the first social results to appear (including to the right of the listed results). You will likely see a Google+ result (i.e. cooking may show Jamie Oliver Google+ page). Then when you click the bookmarklet tab you should see that Jamie Oliver’s Twitter page replaces the Google+ result, as it as higher interactivity and more recent, relevant content. You should see the return of social results from the likes of LinkedIn, Tumblr, Flickr and Quora. Obviously, if a Google+ page is the best ranking, then the SERP will not change.
The engineers behind the “Don’t be Evil” project, insist that the results are simply manipulated by using the unadulterated software that Google used to use before bolstering their own social pages.
The development is a result of continuous criticism towards Google for unfairly favouring its own pages and betraying their core values of providing users with the most relevant, sought after results.
Google have made many alterations recently as an attempt to socialise search, however it became obvious that Google was artificially favouring its own social network. The video below demonstrates that Twitter and Facebook pages with more interaction, followers/likes, and more recent content were being ranked below Google+ pages. It points out that in the original results, some of the bolstered Google+ pages would have not even have featured in the top 5 pages.
Google are yet to officially react or respond to this development.
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