August 17, 2015

3 Things Local Businesses Can Learn From the Troubled Fate Of Google+

The Google+ logo over a graphic of circles in the Google logo colors.
Photo courtesy from IT Pro Portal

By Nick K.

Whenever there is a success or failure in business, there is always a lesson that can be learned from it. In many cases, this lesson can be in the form of advice or a tweak in business strategy to ensure that the same issue doesn’t cause your own business to suffer from unnecessary problems. In this particular case, the Tek Team would like to discuss Google+ and talk about what lessons you and your business can learn from its many hefty amount of successes, and disappointments.

Find your Target Market and Stick to it

In order to run a successful business, there are many factors that play into making your business profitable long-term. One aspect that is vital for local business success is establishing a target market and sticking with it. In other words, find out what makes your business unique and your “target market” will be what kind of people would be interested in your business.

Often times, there have been businesses who want to provide a product or service for everything. This might be profitable short-term but, when looking at the whole picture, they will often end up failing because the market need for all of the products and services could potentially fade away.

This is due to a lot of competition from other, more specialized services that do their one service or product particularly well, like Pinterest and Instagram. If you can’t find a focused target market, you’re trying to please everyone. How are you going to stay in business?  

According to Tech Crunch, Google+ failed to provide unique features to attract users, which would have set it apart from other popular social media platforms. For example, Google+ provided many similar features to the social media scene many other platforms like Instagram and Facebook had already been providing. This includes the ability to update your status, connect with friends, and upload photos, etc.  

Maintain Control of what Your Business Can and Cannot Do

When business is thriving, many business owners often grow eager to keep improving upon their success. When this happens, usually businesses will start to expand in numerous ways, such as growing a product line or opening another location. It is important for you as an owner to keep in mind what your business does well and improve upon that. You can also analyze the competition and market trends before considering expanding a product line or the business as a whole.

Google+ started out as a rumored “Facebook killer.” This hype caused some of the disappointment that Google+ has fostered. In addition, Google is such a large company and brand, it is easy for them to get carried away with urgent demands elsewhere, thus making it difficult to make appropriate changes users wanted to see by now with Google+. This could potentially be another reason why Google restructured their business with Alphabet, to help battle those urgent demands in a more timely fashioned.   

Be Vigilant of When Your Business Needs to Refocus and Regroup  

Eventually the market trends will change for your business and competition. A prime example would be a new competitor creating a breakthrough product that customers find very beneficial. Perhaps, you will have to change your business approach. There is also the possibility that business is not going well for you. However, do not be alarmed by declining sales and potential customers. Usually this can be a positive opportunity, for it allows your business to make the necessary improvements to stay successful.  

Google+ had been struggling with declining members for several reasons, such as forcing users to create an account to watch YouTube videos, access Gmail accounts, etc. Google regrouped and changed the requirements, making it no longer mandatory to create a Google+ account to access many of Google’s services. They also created some unique features like Google Collections to differentiate themselves from the other social media goliaths. Although it might not be enough to take down Facebook, Google+’s changes are definitely a step in the right direction.

Success and failure are both a good and bad, depending how you look at it. It ultimately depends how you respond that determines the fate of your business overall. Google+ has seen both ups and downs, but yet it still has kept on weathering the storm of the brutal social media industry and can now grow into something new.

Are there any business lessons that you found beneficial in the changes made to Google+? Please feel free to share them in the comments below! 

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