Google+ has been on quite a journey since its launch in 2011.
Back then there was talk about a site which could take the fight to Facebook and may in fact have the clout to supplant Mark Zuckerburg’s creation.
In fact public response was rather muted and it became apparent fairly quickly that Google would not mount a serious challenge as the sort of social hub originally envisaged.
Yes, the amount of people with an account is formidable – on the face of it more than two billion people nationwide have joined. But the fact remains that only a fraction of this number are active users.
Some suggested that having already spun off the more successful features into separate apps that Google might judiciously withdraw.
This month they instead unveiled a redesigned Google+. The new look is simpler, more mobile-friendly and executives believe it will play to the strengths of the platform. This time it isn’t a full-frontal assault on Facebook, but an attempt to make the most of the distinct niche that the site has carved out.
A key focus now is communities, which offers users the chance to join groups based on their interests. There is also a “collections” feature, allowing you to group pictures and videos on specific topics.
Businesses should also bear in mind that, as always, everything posted on their account is immediately indexed, which is likely to have a positive effect on their search engine placement.
So while by its own admission Google hasn’t managed to create the new Facebook it has clearly found an audience for its way of doing things.