If you’ve been in the digital marketing world for a while, you’re probably already familiar with using Google+ as a remarkable tool for SEO. We’re going to go over some of the basics of building a Google+ presence to make sure you get the most out of the oft forgotten social media site.

Verify Your Website

When setting up your company’s Google+ page, make sure to verify your website to get the most out of the platform. Verifying and linking your website will allow Google+ to work more closely with your brand and help determine relevance when it comes to ranking. It will also let you keep track of more analytics than if you had a completely separate page from your site.

Build Circles

If you want to make friends, sometimes you have to be the one that reaches out first. Circles are Google+’s way of “friending” someone. Think of it as a hybrid of Twitter and Facebook. You can follow someone and see their content, but they don’t have to follow you back. Once they do, you can specify which content you want to share with your followers.

As corny as it sounds, the best way to make friends is to be a friend. Find other people or brands that have the same interests and follow them. You’d be surprised how many people will follow you back. Don’t just stop there, though. Engage with their content, especially if it’s relevant, and build out a dialogue.

Once you build your circles, you can group them based on specific topics or interests. Then, when you go to share content later, you can choose which groups see your posts based on their interests and your content.

Join the Discussion

Google+ groups are a great way to promote your content. Search around and join the groups that are specific to your industry. Make sure to read all the rules so that you don’t get labeled as a spammer when you go to share posts there. A good way to avoid coming across as a selfish self promoter is to engage with other members of the group.

Like a few posts, leave a comment, ask a question – anything that makes your company seem like there are real people behind the scenes will always get more respect and engagement than those who don’t.

Ultimately, Google+ offers much more flexibility when it comes to building out your brand and having a strong social media presence. You don’t have to spend tons of ad money like Facebook, and the odds of getting someone to engage with your content are much higher than the likes of Twitter. This is all without talking about the great benefits to SEO Google+ gives you. It may be a forgotten service, but Google+ is more than worth your company’s time.