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Google+ has become a hot topic of discussion. Some people love it, some people hate it, and a lot of people don’t use it. But even though Google+ is somewhat of a ghost town (aside from the Google+ developers… HA) it’s still a very important part of your website and SEO planning, and here’s why:

Content posted on a Google+ page or profile can rank higher, more quickly than any other content outlet. This hands down should be your green light into setting up and using at least a Google+ profile. Even more, when you integrate your Google+ profile or page into your website, it not only helps with using their Webmaster tools, it also gives added value and style when your content shows up in Google’s SERPS (search engine results pages). It will add things like “posted by xyz business 3 days ago” and show your company logo. Pretty sweet!

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Getting on with the show, here is a step by step guide on how to create a Google+ Page, correctly set it up, verify your website, and then integrate it into your website!

Step 1, get to the Google

The first thing you’ll want to go is get to Google+ and then make sure you’re logged into the account you want to use to manage the Plus Page. Click here to get to Google+

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Step 2, make a Google

Next, you’ll want to create a Google+ page. You can do this by clicking on your profile image circle in the top right corner, and going to the drop down option that says “All my Google+ Pages”

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Once you’re there, if you don’t currently have any pages, all you’ll see is a button labeled “Get Your Page”. If you do already have pages, they’ll be listed here as well.

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Once you click the button it will start the process of creating a page. On the next screen you’ll pick what type of page it’s going to be.

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Storefront: For businesses that have a brick and mortar location(s). Think retail store, shopping mall, or restaurant.

Service Area: For businesses that provide a service, but doesn’t necessarily have a physical location

Brand: Most things that fit into this category will be a music band, clothing line, energy drink, new awesome gadget, some type of entertainment or a personality (radio show host, for example).
Once you make a choice, you’ll start to enter in your information. (This will be different depending on which option you chose)

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After that you’ve created your new Google+ Page! Yay! Next, the fun parts.

Step 3, style a Google

Now that you have your page created, you’ll want to style it to be in line with yourself or your brand. To make it a little easier for you, we’ve created a Photoshop template you can use to create a Google+ profile image as well as a Page Banner. You can grab it from a previous post we’ve made titled: Your Complete Online Rules and Information Guide. A link to the template is at the bottom of the post, but feel free to give the whole thing a read, it has a lot of good information for you! Once you’ve got your images created, all you have to do is hover your mouse over your profile image or cover image and you’ll get a button option to change them. They also make it pretty simple to edit the other parts and information of your Page.

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Make sure when adding your information that you add in your website. When you do this, Google will ask you if you want to verify your website, and you want to! We’ll cover that in the next section, Step 4, integrate the Google.

Step 4, integrate the Google

This step is going to be what links your website and your Google+ Page, giving you higher SEO rankings and more tools available to you in your Webmaster account.
It’s pretty straight forward to do, and only two things you need to take care of.

1. You’ll want to put the Google+ profile that owns the page as the author of your website. To do this, you need to add the following tag in-between thetags of your website: <link rel="author" href="LINK TO YOUR PROFILE HERE" />

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2. Now, you need to let Google know what page is the publisher of your website. To do this you need to add the rel=”publisher” parameter to a link that goes to your Google+ page, like this: <a rel="publisher" href="LINK TO YOUR GOOGLE+ PAGE" target="_blank">GOOGLE+ PAGE NAME</a>

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Step 5, feed the Google

That’s it! You’re all set up! The only thing left to do is to start posting to your google+ page so that the content can get picked up. To help you manage this you might want to look into using a tool that can automate this for you. We use Hootsuite to help us better manage our posting schedule, you should give it a try! | HootSuite.com

If you have any questions or need help with setting up your Google+ Page and linking it to your website, feel free to leave us a comment in the comment section below!

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