Google Plus – Do you need it?

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Google Plus (+) is the less popular alternative social network offered by Google in an attempt to fight back Facebook's success. At the moment of writing this post it has around 100 million active users and counting and Google just announced some user interface improvements to try to get the users back to actually using it.

We know by now why Google actually needed Google plus and that's the improved advertising display based on all the data we input to our Google plus account, but now the question asked is do you need it?

To answer this question we will consider the personal Google plus account and the business one.

Google plus is basically a one stop shop that gathers all of Google's services into one place and allows you to communicate with friends along the way. On the personal note it gives almost no added value as Facebook is more popular has more feature and a much better user interface.

On the business aspect Google plus has 2 main advantages:

1. SEO - If you are optimizing your website for Google - this is a must. Not only for backlinks but also because Google can't fully index Facebook so it is dependent on information it has access to - and it has access to Google plus. If you have an account with Google plus for your business or website you have one thing that you competitors don't have (yet).

2. Branding and Integration - As a brand you must have an online presence outside your website. Google plus as well as other social networks are part of it.

We must not forget that even though it's smaller and less attractive than its competitor, it still has 100 million active users and that's a lot. This number will eventually grow and that's a good enough reason to be there.

What do you think, do you need a Google plus account or not?