In the days leading up to Google+ worldwide launch, I could hardly sleep. As an avid Gmail and Google Docs user, I was eager with anticipation to finally see all that Google had been up to for all these months. For a long time, the public at large was informed that Google was working on a top-secret, extraordinary new feature that would change the face of social networking forever. Even though the details of Google+ were kept secret up until the final release date, according to those who got to test drive the product, Google+ was without a doubt going to put Facebook and Twitter to shame.
It’s been over a year since Google released Google+ to the world, and I think I can say with the utmost certainly that the Google feature didn’t live up to the hype it created. Now I’m not saying that Google+ isn’t useful; in fact, I think that Google+ feature is at the top of its game. However, for a number of reasons the program simply didn’t catch on with the millions of Google users out there. Below are the three main reasons why I believe Google+ didn’t connect with audiences.
Facebook is enough
With over 500 million users, Facebook is a valiant force in the social-media world. In fact, checking Facebook has become something of an everyday habit for many individuals. The social-media phenomenon has taken the world by storm and changed the way people interact and connect with each other forever. So, why wasn’t the more innovative Google+ able to challenge the social-media giant Facebook? Well, if there is one thing I know for sure it’s that people don’t trust change. People are generally more routine-driven individuals than we think, so they often prefer to stick with what they know best. And as the old saying goes, ‘If it isn’t broke, don’t fix it.’ In other words, the world just isn’t ready to be a part of two social-media websites at the same time; so, for now, Facebook is what people are going to stick with.
It’s five years too early
When I gave Google+ a test drive, I was surprised at how innovative and evolutionary the feature seemed. At the same time, however, I felt a bit overwhelmed with all that came with Google+. What I was originally expecting to see was something similar to Facebook; instead, I was asked to join circles, create hangouts, and video chat with fellow users. Although I think all of these features are amazing, I think they’ve come about five years too early. Keep in mind, Facebook has been around for less than 10 years and people are still just beginning to understand all they can do with it. I think Google+ would have set the social-media world on fire had it been released about five years from now. Until then, people just have no real use of those extra features.
Google already has its niches
When I think of Google, I think of searches, emails, and not much else. I know Google seems to be expanding at the speed of light, but sometimes it’s vital that a growing company slow down and analyze its current body of work. Google does such an extraordinary job with its existing niches, but each and every one of their features could use some work here and there. Perhaps the best thing for them to do at this point is improve upon the products they already have and worry about expansion at a later time. Don’t get me wrong; I’m all for Google moving forward, but sometimes I wonder if there moving too fast for their own good.
Google is one of the most evolutionary companies on the market today, but for a number of obvious reasons, their Google+ feature just didn’t stick with audiences. I think it’s safe to say they got much less than they bargained for when they released Google+.
Pepper Givens is a freelance writer whose foremost passion is writing for her blog about education. While her primary writing focus is trends in higher ed, Pepper also enjoys writing about personal finance, parenting, sustainable living, small business strategies, and more. She can be reached for questions or comments at firstname.lastname@example.org.