The latest social share numbers are in and Google+ isn’t doing so well

by: Joe HindyJuly 19, 2013

Google+The latest social share numbers are in and things aren’t nearly what any loyal Google+ user expected them to be. Despite the fact that many of us see the people in our circles share things nearly constantly, the numbers overall doesn’t seem to agree with the experiences that most of us have had.

In a study done by Gigya, it shows that overall, Google+ is responsible for a measly 2% of social shares in Q2 (April through June) of 2013. Overall, as you can see from the graphic above, they get beat out by LinkedIn, Pinterest, Twitter, Facebook, and even the vague and mysterious “Other” category. Literally last place.

As Marketingland points out, the two biggest disappointments are in e-commerce and media/publishing sharing, where Google+ takes 2% respectively. According to the Gigya blog, this trend continues with Consumer Brands (2%), Travel/Hospitality (1%), and Education/Non-Profit (2%). So, all in all, not a lot of sharing going on from Google+ users and that’s truly a mind scratcher.


Why is Google+ so low?

It definitely makes one stop to wonder why this is. After all, if you have a healthy number of people in your circles, you see content re-shared all day long. Our guess is that once a Google+ user sees the content, they’re more likely to re-share the post they found it on rather than re-share the site itself.

Keep in mind that this is only conjecture. We are smartphone geeks, not social media marketing experts. Still, though, we’d like to see the numbers for sharing within the social network. We have seen articles that only get a few shares on a website but get a thousand shares from a Google+ post. So there is definitely something there to think about.

We want to hear what you think. Do these numbers seem accurate and do you think they’re counting the wrong things here? Let us know your thoughts in the comments!

  • George

    I’m not surprised at all. I think Google’s strategy of forcing so many of their services onto the Google+ platform will backfire. While it may inflate the registered & active user numbers (although many of these I suspect are just users on services with a forced Google+ sign in – like One Today, or Play Store commenting), it is essIentially herding large numbers of reluctant and apathetic users onto the Google+ service stifling it’s ability develop generically and find its own voice.

    • APai

      you miss the point, they maybe in for the numbers, but everyone else is doing the same – shoehorning a single id strategy – microsoft has been doing that for years although in a messy way. facebook is doing the same although they haven’t got out of their fence. even, apple does the same. vic gundothra even said the same on launch of g+ they were looking for a different space than fb, fb has become the google search in that space, or like microsoft has occupied the desktop.

      • tpradebe

        yahoo was king in its space

    • You’re spot on. I used to write reviews in GPlay all the time and haven’t since the G+ requirement.

      • tpradebe

        are you happier?

        • As a customer, I’m more disgruntled. I can’t praise good work or call out developers on shoddy work. Without being able to share my experience of the app, I feel like a leecher.

          • tpradebe

            no matter how much you love fb, swallow your pride and get on google+. people used to use yahoo, bing, firefox but google products always win because they don’t need you, you need them

          • I actually have a G+ and don’t have a Facebook. However my G+ is for Google Plussing, it’s not for integrating with other services. Just like with GPlay, if they force me to use the G+ account, I’d rather just not use the service.

    • Mark


      The only thing Google has forced me to do it create a throw-away account under a fake name. I comment and do stuff with that instead.

    • tpradebe

      Google+ will be the best like Gmail, Andoid, Search and Chrome. Everyone wanted all of them to fail but those people failed instead

    • Milind

      Spot on. I don’t use any social media and absolute totally viscerally hate Google+ because Google is shoving it down my throat at every opportunity it gets. I may have used it at some point, if I had found a reason to. Now, it’s got to a point where I have stopped using Google services where they are forcing me to use it. I no longer comment on Apps in the Play Store. I’m a huge Google fan, but this is driving me away. I can still comment on YouTube. But I won’t as soon as they force that as well. I didn’t go to Google IO this year because they forced me to sign in with Google+.

      Google is not losing any sleep over me. But I’m extremely happy that this may well be having a backlash on them if there are a lot of folks like me.

  • APai

    social media is being used for different purposes. g+ wasnt a facebook replacement, nor was pinterest. but, going by stats – I’d say pinterest should wipe out facebook right ? right ?
    but, that’s not happening, as a lot of people use twitter/ g+ to follow, rather than to share. unlike facebook where people use to share in a way different from pinterest.

  • najiy91

    personally,i do not like g+ interface/layout. facebook is attractive for its simplicity.

    • rainman

      I couldn’t disagree more. The g+ interface is lightspeed ahead in terms of simplicity and fb is more cluttered than any other social network I use

      • Shaizad Maredia

        People don’t won’t to accept good things fast, g+ instant upload , circle and circle management, privacy ,hangouts,event pages, etc look daam good try to see g+ and fb side by side fb look too old even one id for all works good for me

      • MasterMuffin

        you mean light years?

    • rainman

      But I respect your preferences

  • najiy91

    or,people worlwide are still new to g+. in my country,malaysia,people still new and hard to change from fb to g+.maybe the reason friend connections will be lost.just an opinion(“,)

    • tpradebe

      people lost their yahoo chat friends to join gmail, it’s big

      • najiy91

        i admit g+ is good and smooth.but,people.

  • rainman

    Perhaps they can only measure public posts, where most of our g+ sharing is done to private circles.

  • Valley Social Media

    I get more shares on Google+ than anywhere else. Odd.

  • Otto Andersson

    Google +:Facebook ::windows phone:android

    Hope you remember high school analogies.

    • tpradebe

      may i add:
      yahoo mail: gmail
      firefox: chrome
      bing/yahoo: google
      … etc

      • Otto Andersson

        sure:p but i’m basically saying that Google plus is a shameless ripoff that is playing catch up to Facebook’s features. I hate Facebook but their messenger program is far cleaner and better built than hangouts. I personal hate both facebook and Google plus , and I think Google is going in an awful direction.

  • MasterMuffin

    Google+ is better than Facebook. Privacy is better, it looks better, it’s faster and the Android app is light years ahead of Facebook’s (though I like chatheads, but you can get Halo). The G+ account number “lies”, because the number of active users is probably 1/4 of it. I know only one person who uses G+ (excluding myself), because FB is “cool” and everyone’s there. It’s just sad.

    • SeraZR™

      yea i can find everyone on fb…even my dad :O :O O>o o<O

      • tpradebe

        everyone was on yahoomail once, they are on gmail now

    • Mark

      G+ doesn’t offer anything that people don’t already have on FB. I’m not fan of either. But marginal feature differences are meaningless with there is no one there. No one wants to ‘hangout’ by them self. And Privacy is horrible on G+, even worse than FB and I didn’t think that was humanly possible. Google can’t just force users to adopt such a privacy raping service and not expect people to shun it.

      • MasterMuffin

        privacy raping?

      • tpradebe

        gmail sends email like yahoomail, google searches like bing, chrome surfs like firefox, android is a software like iOS and Google+ does what facebook does. gmail won, Gsearch won, chrome won, android won, Google+ ….

    • Valentin

      First of all, I really hate FB’s privacy, constant idiotic changes and so on but…in the end it’s better than G+ which I actually gave it a try and it sucked because noone is using it! Yes, this actually matters a LOT! G+ interface is much simple and cleaner, but after years of FB, I’haven’t found anything that would make me move to G+…al the exclusive features like hangouts and stuff like that are not that interesting to me (at least) But again…If 99% of my friends use FB, I will stay on FB, G+ still feels like a desert :) The sad part is that I really wanted to like G+ but…maybe someday :)

      • MasterMuffin

        I always treated G+ app as bloat and always deleted it with root uninstaller. Then I was forced to make an account (just like you) and I really, REALLY didn’t like that. Everything changes and I started hating FB. I gave G+ a second chance and found out that it was so much better than FB that I went and almost deleted my FB account (but didn’t too it after a lot of thinking because of various reasons). Now I use G+ more than FB! I use the latter just to see what my friends are doing (because none of them are in G+).

  • nick

    They came too late in a game dominated by fb LinkedIn and twitter and no-one cares about G+. Most users are forced to sign in using G+ but that doesn’t make them active users…

    • tpradebe

      google was late, chrome was late, gmail was late. are they number 1?

  • David

    Well. I use G+ because it’s better, not because it’s huge. Privacy is well thought from the beginning (not an after thought), it backups my photos allowing me to instantly and easily share high quality photos with my family only (again, thanks well thought privacy), and it just has more interesting people there. It’s about following interesting people, not mirror facing and cat photos from people I know. The app is simply gorgeous and the desktop interface is… Well… See for yourselves lol.

  • JSMc

    I’m sorry, but as I am not a social marketing genius, I do not understand exactly what the “social sharing” statistic being discussed here really refers to.

    • JosephHindy

      okay at the top of this page are FB, G+, Twitter, etc share buttons. These numbers measure which one of those buttons people are most likely to hit.

      • tpradebe

        and at this point:
        fb 43: g+ 38
        ghost town is only 5 shares behind themonopoly

        • JosephHindy

          Lol well we are a tech site and the majority of readers are tech nerds who use Google+ ;) it’s kind of like running a cake store and going “see, lots of people buy cake…look how many cakes we’ve sold!”

  • DisQusItoo

    Google+ won’t give up control – they want to tell U how to set Up G+ and if U don’t like too bad. Only 2% of users accept this stupid idea. SetUp is a serious pain in the ass. I’m not going to share a Damm thing on G+ till Google discovers that I’m their market not the other way round.

    • tpradebe

      people said that about gmail or chrome

  • Josh!

    I’m surprised only by the fact that Google tries to bend your arm into using G+. With all the Android phones that get activated daily and if you want to use things like Drive and leave reviews you need to sign up for Plus. I’m a new user and I see no reason to sign up for Google+. So I miss out on Drive (so I use skydrive and dropbox) and reviewing apps.

    • tpradebe

      i bet you preferred iOS over android, yahoomail over gmail, firefox over chrome but you always lose

  • Steve

    Who wants to be part of a ghost town? Besides, the two best things it offers are Hangouts and photo backup. I’d rather see them integrate the products without trying to be yet another social site. Do one thing, and do it well, and people will come.

    • tpradebe

      use yahoomail, firefox, bing, facebook instead of gmail, chrome, google and google+ but they all win eventually

  • Lil bit

    I dont see the point of following people and the circles thing. Why do I not have a Twitter account? Because i have no interest in following anyone, nor do I have a need to express myself and secretly dream of having many followers.

    Now this is what I did on FB the last two weeks: Met a pretty 18 year old girl, then met in person, made her my gf, having a great time, and this is possible because FB is where the real people are, it’s the only social network that can intersect with your real social life. G+ isn’t a social network compared to FB, the poor default privacy of FB is what opens up possibilities. Friendster was my favorite though, had many scores with girls there.

  • shopping863

  • Daniel O. Barga

    They are very aggressive with their style. Compulsory Google+ account, Google+ for being able to place a review on an app, Gmail account, Google Wallet. They wait other companies to make a groundbreaking stuff, then immediately replicate it whenever it is successful.

    I hate Google for this. They look like a devil. I only liked Gmail just recently. It is very lightweight, fast, more easy to sort etc/ Why don’t they just stick with what they are best with.

    • tpradebe

      They beat Yahoo Search, Firefox, Yahoo mail and more with that strategy. it works because no matter how much you hate G+, it is the 2nd biggest social network by active user and it’s growing. I was just checking my stream now and over 50% of posts are shared privately and they are never counted

  • Embar

    Google+ is +1 shit from Google on the list of failed products. Except maps, and Google Talk, they screwed everything. also, The ads which they earn revenue are all irrelevant and complete nonsense. They should just stick to innovation than competing.

  • The first problem with this is thinking Google+ is a social network. It’s really whatever you want it to be. But most of all it’s a hub to bring all Google products together. Something that was missing and needed before G+ came along.

    • Milind

      No it wasn’t needed and did nothing for me as a consumer. They could have used my gmail address like they used to. With Google, it’s a tradeoff. You share your information with them and they give you something in exchange. I get gmail, much better search results, excellent Google Now notifications, Android etc. It’s a symbiotic relationship. Because I use their services, they know more about me and can target directed ads at me. And I’m all for that. In fact Google’s targeted ads are much better than generic ads for both Google (higher revenue) and me (more relevant).

      Google+ on the other hand, shares my information with others. I’m not interested in anyone else having that information. Not even people in my private circle. I don’t like social media and I don’t use any of them. As long as Google was fine with providing people who valued their services, using them, they did well. I didn’t care about Latitude and never used it. The people who liked it used it. They should have done the same with Google+. If people who had liked it, joined it, it would have grown organically – just like all their other services did. But instead, they tried to grow it too fast by thrusting it on everyone. It’s just turned by back up and I’ll now never use it. Given Larry Paige’s focus on this, this is unfortunately one product that Google will not kill. But it’s first one they need to either need to kill, or just back off.

  • John A

    I like Google and what they have done over the years. Android is my OS of choice, Chrome my desktop browser and Gmail my email client. But I have never got into Google+, because I dont have many friends using it, and I just dont see a use for it as I have been using Facebook and Twitter before it. I have tried it but I just dont have a reason to continue.

  • Andre Hospidales

    I think most people that use G+ use it for seo related purposes, and people rarely share personal stuff. Most of the sharing are done with the seo benefits in mind. G+ is dominated by internet marketers but on Facebook, people are more comfortable sharing with their friends and family.