Everybody was very excited for the advent of Google+, Larry Page’s answer to the social networking phenomenon. It’s ambitiously hoping to compete with social network media giant Facebook, and has gained 90 million registered users since June.
Pretty good, right? So what’s the problem? The problem is, almost all of those 90 million members haven’t done much of anything since…well… signing up. Reports are saying that the average Google+ member spends roughly three minutes a month on the site, compared to six or seven hours for Facebook.
Google+, despite all of its sizzle and promise, is basically a ghost town.
One of the biggest problems of Google+ is its difficulty in differentiating it from Facebook. Google+ does have some unique features, but analysts are saying that they’re just not enough to lure away Facebook members. “Nobody wants another social network right now,” said Brian Solis, an analyst at social-media advisory firm Altimeter Group. For those who already use Facebook, “Google hasn’t communicated what the value of Google+ is,” he said.
Google execs shirk comparisons to Facebook, suggesting that they’ve got their eyes on the long-haul of social network development. But so far, they haven’t encouraged much dynamism, particularly concerning personalization and app development. Despite this, Google seems confident, with Bradley Horowitz, Google VP of product management saying that Google+ only really exists to add a social network dimension on top of Gmail and Youtube.
Horowitz avoided questions about user time spent on Google+ but said “we’re growing by every metric we care about.”
Are you a Google+ member? How much time do you spend on your profile a month?