Will there be any effects of shutting down of Google+ on SEO?
The trigger for this decision of shutdown was the data breach of about 5,00,000 users which happened gradually in the last 2 years and Google choose to report it later than expected. The shutdown will begin on 2 April 2019 and will continue over the next few months.
The question now arises, what will be the effects of that? Will anything change related to SEO, google search etc.? Google+ was known to be of great help in Digital Marketing w.r.t SEO, site ranking on google search for the businesses. The upvoting (+1), Google’s version of a Facebook like, was such a feature that, more the +1’s on the post on Google+ of any business or user page, that piece of post was ranked higher in the google search results as compared to others.
Google+ had a significant impact even on blog posts and other content on the web. Thus, the usage of Google+ and having a page on it was crucial for the SEO strategies of businesses. The layman assumption would be the shutting of Google+ will affect all the businesses equally. But careful consideration will show another picture.
The ranking on google search index is also affected by other things like your business activities on Facebook, Twitter, Quora, LinkedIn etc. and usage of your main website. So the businesses that used Google+ more for SEO will be affected more as compared to those who used other social networks and means to up their rank on the google search index.
You know very well how much of Google+ you used as compared to other social media. Having said this, there could be still reasons why the effect of shutting down of Google+ will be less than what you will deduce for your business. Because, Google regularly updates their search algorithm and sooner than later, the effect of Google+ shutting down will wane.
Google+ was the 4th attempt of Google to have a highly active and successful social network, to have a great rival to Facebook. So it will not be bad to assume that Google may come up with another such similar but better offering to people, which can also affect SEO like Google+ did. But till then, in the short term, businesses will have to overcome some search ranking loss and move on to other social networks for SEO.