Over the years, Google has tried to find successful online companies and subsequently launch competing products in an effort to counter act threats from the competition. In some cases, this process has worked and in other cases, the results have been mixed.
Facebook has been one company that has seen real growth. In fact, the success of this company has been a growing concern for the search engine and in an effort to take some of the wind out of Facebook’s sails, we saw Google launch their own social networking site known as Google+. The reviews of Google’s own social service have been mixed. At times, it would seem as though the site was seeing good growth and yet at other times, it almost felt like the site was a ghost town.
In an effort to show customers that Google+ is a thriving community, we now have the March numbers for this site and from what we can see, Google’s social site has seen 27% growth from the past month with total visits now amounting to 61 million users. This information was provided by Experian Hitwise and from the above growth chart, we can see that Google+ has seen steady growth since its June 2011 launch. Two months after its launch, Google+ saw strong growth and between December 2011 and February 2012, it did seem as if Google was in a steady state. This of course has changed between February 2012 and March 2012 when the growth rate accelerated once again.
Google still has a long ways to go before Google+ can be considered as a serious competitor to Facebook. Not only do they need to continue to grow their active user base, but they also have to increase the amount of time people stay on the site as comScore indicated that in January of this year, users spent on average, 7.5 hours on Facebook while at the same time, spending just 3.3 minutes on Google+.