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Is it Better to Share on Google+, Facebook or Twitter?

Shortly after announcing Google+, Google removed a feature that went almost unnoticed and that was “RealTime” search. This feature provided users with a search capability that included tweets on Twitter that provided breaking news and other links  in real time.Is it Better to Share on Google+ Facebook or Twitter

Google’s response via a tweet was

We’ve temporarily disabled google.com/realtime. We’re exploring how to incorporate Google+ into this functionality, so stay tuned

Google also said that it hadn’t renewed its agreement with Twitter (which had originally been struck in 2009)  that enabled this feature to be offered. So if you want “real time” search then Twitter is where you will have to take your keywords and phrases for the moment.

The Battle for Social

This small change to Google’s search features reveals an evolution of the web that is an early indicator of the growing battle for social that will over time produce winners and losers but will also create a web that will surprise you with its speed and capabilities. The announcement and launching of Google+ saw Zuckerberg respond with a a Skype feature offering free video calls and promising more to come.

The survival of the social species is a digital battle that will create opportunities and disrupt traditional business models for decades to come.

Social is about Sharing

All marketers know that if you can make something so shareable that it goes viral then you will produce results for brands that will sell products, make people famous and maybe even position your agency as part of marketing folklore.

You only have to look at viral videos such as the Old Spice YouTube videos to see the results of that.

Marketers also know that sharing by peers and friends creates more traffic and trust than brand advertising so motivating sharing is the holy grail of social marketing

Where is all the Sharing Happening?

Google proudly announced 2 weeks after the Google+ launch that it was sharing one billion  items per day. Mark Zuckerberg revealed at a recent announcement that on Facebook

  • Users are sharing 4 billion items on the Facebook social network everyday
  • This is double what it was a year ago
  • This trend will continue and predicts that it will double again in 12 months
  • The new apps they are developing will make sharing easier

Where does Twitter Fit in this Sharing Social Web?

Twitter revealed (via a tweet of course) that it is sharing 350 billion tweets a day that makes the Google+ announcement seem rather dismal at only 1 billion.

Twitter shares 350 billion tweets a day

The amount of sharing and traffic that Twitter drives is not always obvious from your referral traffic when you check your Google Analytics or WordPress stats. In fact there are now 1 million registered Twitter apps that are sharing every day

Twitter Drives 4 times as Much Traffic as you Think

According to data collected from Awe.sm over the last 6 months the referral traffic you see on your website or blog is less than 25% of the traffic actually driven by Twitter.

This is what the data revealed.

  • Only 24.4% of clicks on links shared on Twitter had twitter.com in the referrer
  • 62.6% of clicks on links shared on Twitter had no referrer information at all (i.e. they would show up as ‘Direct Traffic’ in Google Analytics)
  • 13.0% of clicks on links shared on Twitter had another site as the referrer (e.g. Facebook.com, Linkedin.com).

Twitter Drives 4 times as Much Traffic as you Think

So Google+ has the headlines and the the hype and Facebook has 750 million users but don’t forget Twitter in your marketing, it still is a sharing power house that keeps on giving.

How do your find Twitter for driving traffic to your blog, website or other online properties?

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Jeffbullas's Blog


  • Craig Grella

    Funny, I just started segmenting my google Analytics traffic sources. Right now most of my social media traffic is still coming from Facebook, but twitter fans are growing and I’m using google plus much more now too. I see the winds of change a blowing.

  • Interesting!  I don’t have Google + yet, so I can’t really say how I like it.  I will say that I don’t really miss what I don’t have.  I also wonder if I need another social platform.  I can hardly keep up with twitter!

    • Thanks for the comment Steve. It does add another layer of learning and complexity that for the casual private user is maybe not worth using but for the marketer and blogger it should not be ignored!

  • Anonymous

    Most likely, Facebook has closer to 150 to 200 million individual accounts as Facebook counts fake accounts for Farmville playing and Facebook Pages created by members as “accounts.”

    Most likely 90% of sharing on Facebook consists announcements from Facebook games that someone has found treasure or is now playing a game; or is someone uploading pictures of their ugly kids for their relatives to see.

    Facebook execs make glowing claims for their product, but in the end Facebook is little more than a display advertising site with a massive low-income audience. 

    The site works as a vehicle for consumer package goods and cheap electronics as aspirational goods for those with lower incomes.

  • for me I prefer sharing on twitter

  • I’m already swamped in keeping up with business accounts on Facebook and Twitter. Do you recommend to invest time in Google+ as well? I’ve heard some rumours that’s it’s the going to take-over Facebook. What do you think? Invest time now so you’re ahead later on? Or should I leave it for later?

  • I’m already swamped in keeping up with business accounts on Facebook and Twitter. Do you recommend to invest time in Google+ as well? I’ve heard some rumours that’s it’s the going to take-over Facebook. What do you think? Invest time now so you’re ahead later on? Or should I leave it for later?

    • Core requirements should dictate if you should be heavy on a certain network. G+ is sliding into oblivion, no matter how many tweaks, it will stay as the late comer to the game.

  • Raquel Rothe

    I love reading Jeff’s updates.  It keeps me current and as a small business owner it helps me to decide the best platform for my business yet keeping an open mind to all. Thank you!

  • Curious – any stats on users that have left FB since Google + has come out?  I think it will be some time before we see the true stats that peopl “left” FB for Google Plus.  RIght now I think people are still sharing with the major ones FB, Twitter, YouTube and also using Google Plus as it grows.  FB may have taken a blow but you cant argue with 750 million users…

  • I bet more then half of the stuff shared on facebook is either spam or I just reached level 70 on Farmville crap.

  • Absolutely wonderful article. I wonder what will ever become of mankind. Seems like that quick and resourceful will outlive all of our smart people 🙂 and thanks for posted!

  • Having some good luck using all the mentioned social networks with various clients.(all different types of businesses) Good read.

  • I prefer sharing on facebook

  • Jeff, thank you for your articles. They are very helpful. Good place to learn about social networks sharing.