Google added a new, very extensive feature to its popular +1 button on Wednesday, allowing users to share links to the Web pages they like with their Google+ circles by simply clicking the button.
Now, when a Google+ user decides that they like some online content enough to give it their +1 seal of approval, a box will open up on their screen for adding a comment that other users can see. In addition, it lets the user customize the piece of text (aka a "+Snippet") and image(s) that will show up in his or her stream.
The user also has the option of including in-line annotations, like with the Facebook "Like" button, so that the names and faces of Google+ friends who have affirmed the worthiness of the content in question with their trusty +1 buttons will be available to the rest of the original user's circles.
The +Snippet is a nifty feature that bestows upon your feed all of the information that you could want to share, including a link, image and description of the content, which makes sharing on Google+ really easy and really customizable. This allows a Plus user to surf the Web freely and, when he or she comes across favorable content that they want others in their circles to see, he or she can quickly and efficiently post a short review, include an image and link back to the content without ever having to enter G+. This mimics a Facebook user's current ability to share links on their profile, with the added bonus of not requiring users to go to their profile.
Factor in the information just recently released on Google's blog, that their +1 button is linked to over one million sites that get viewed more than 4 billion times a day, and the potential for the +1 button as a marketing tool becomes even more pronounced.
Does this mean that the +1 button is now becoming the more sought after click by those who provide content online? After all, if a user can easily share something without ever even leaving the original Web page, won't they be more likely to use that service over the one that requires a brief jaunt all the way to their profile?
If Google+ continues to roll out these types of features -- you know, the type that make you go, "Why didn't anyone think of that before?" -- they're going to start to win over more and more people. It seems obvious that Facebook will soon offer some type of similar feature to keep up, as well, so this is really a win-win situation for people who operate online. Now, having your business or brand shared and discussed will become quicker and simpler, greatly increasing the likelihood that online social network users will rant and rave about your great brand or content to their friends or circles.