Now, the game is gradually moving towards Plus Ones. We have already witnessed a lot of sites getting good ranking on Google simply because many people have recommended it using Google Plus. This is indeed a great ranking signal for Google in order to judge the quality and popularity of a webpage. Instead of depending upon algorithms for determining popularity on the basis of backlinks, Google is slowly moving towards a community based approach where it will weigh sites according to the number of social sharing and recommendations.
This does not means that backlinks will not count at all. Links are indeed a primary factor for ranking and will always remain a valuable metric in order to judge the importance of a webpage. Getting backlinks from high quality and authority websites will always help but, the point to note here is that, only links will not help. You need to increase social shares, citations and brand related references. This is possible only if you are true to your business and serve your customers well. There are no shortcuts to it. (Thanks to Matt Cutts! 🙂 )
Here are a few guidelines that needs to be followed
1- Create a site for the users so that they like it and share it on their social media networks.
2- Enable easy sharing of your web content by implementing social sharing buttons on your site.
3- Create a local Google Plus page and encourage customers to like your brand. Encouraging does not means buying shares. Don’t do that.
4- Try and increase the number of quality links to your site.
5- Increase the number of brand related citations that includes either the brand name or the company address. Complete references along with brand name, address and phone number are most valuable. These are an important alternative to links.
6- Encourage tweets, pins, likes, plus ones etc. These are all acting as strong signals to find sites that are loved by users.
7- Implement Google Authorship and start increasing your author rank. Content shared by genuine authors receive the maximum shares.
8- Increase your circles as this will help your content to travel far and receive even more shares.