Earlier today Google released information about integration of Google+ features into Gmail. This does not come as much of a surprise as the two services are already very similar. Those who use Gmail and Google+ on a regular basis will probably find the new features to their liking. Contacts and emails can be organized by circles. This is a very handy addition for small businesses.
Employees can sift through personal and company email by clicking different circles.
Tagging and cataloging emails based on sender is a common practice for most businesses. With Google+ integration companies will no longer have to take the time as long as their trading partners are on Google+ as well. I assume most serious companies are involved with social media already, and this is not an issue.
Benefits of the integration.
- Contacts can be organized by circles. Don’t waste the time organizing email categories, let Google do it for you.
- Sorting email based on circles. Makes sorting through email much easier.
- Can add contacts from Gmail list directly to different circles. Growing your social circles is possible through email now.
- Contact information is automatically updated to make sure it is current. If email contacts have Google+ profiles the personal data provided is automatically saved. Don’t worry about memorizing addresses or phone numbers of friends and family, Google will do it for you.
- Share pictures, videos, messages with circles by sharing from Gmail. A share button has been added that will post directly to Google+ making the distribution of email attachments a breeze.
Google+ and Gmail seem like they were made for each other, and they probably were. Most Gmail patrons will not notice the changes because the integration is going to be quick and painless. Google strives to keep all changes, whether to the search browser or Youtube, as seamless as possible. Happy users are what keep Google running, rapid changes that take people by surprise are known to cause issues in the past. Facebook has dealt with this problem many times as they change the platform of their service.
A way to combat an immediate global outcry as a result of the changes, Google is rolling them out over a period of weeks. Different Gmail users will be selected and Google will monitor the responses. Even if the changes do not go over well, only a small percentage of the population will be aware of it and a media storm will be avoided.
They are no longer trying to compete with Facebook as a simple social network.
These changes sound great and push Google into a position to start taking some business from Facebook. Now that businesses can organize their Gmail accounts based on their Google+ circles there are many incentives to switch social networks particularly for smaller businesses.
- Free email services that can be organized by circles. Making the filtering of business mail less of a hassle.
- Google+ business pages. Social networking platform specifically for companies to spread information about their products and services.
- Google+ hangouts allow businesses to perform video conferences with employees from anywhere in the world free of charge. Can use the hangouts to communicate with other businesses your industry circle.
Google+ has many incentives for small businesses that Facebook has not been able to provide. It will be interesting to see how these changes effect the different social networks. I doubt Facebook will lose much of a user base as most people will just choose to have two social networks instead of one. Google is sending a strong message to Facebook. They are no longer trying to compete with Facebook as a simple social network. They are going to defeat Facebook by providing an overall better Google experience, the combination of their different services into one experience. The idea is awesome, and we will just have to see how it works out.