Google+ claims to have 170 million users and to be growing by leaps and bounds. RJ Metrics was skeptical about this number, possibly out of a sluggish response to Google+ branding or based on personal experience, and conducted a study about engagement on the newer social network. The study was only able to measure posts that are made public, so there is some possibility it is not indicative, but the numbers are sobering.
Of users that make a public post, only 30% of Google+ accounts will ever make another public post again. This compares to an average of 70% across all social networks. That is a staggering difference that should make the social media agency hesitant to spend any money or effort on Google+. The average public post on Google+ is also seeing less than one +1 and less one reshare. This makes it nearly impossible for a post to go viral on Google+. Brands need to instead focus on other social networks for widespread sharing and engagements. Post decay is also an issue for Google+. When a new user signs up, then the statistics predict a public post, but the time between posts is long.
It seems possible that enthusiasm for Google+ is only in the beginnings, when an account is new. People then either give up on learning how to use the network or they abandon it for the networks that are already trafficked and seen by a user’s own circle of friends. Google+ might be gaining more traction as a forum for controlled posts, posts that are not made public and only shared among a small circle of friends. The study does not measure these uses. Whether or not that caveat if true makes Google+ a valuable platform for the social media agency is doubtful.