New lease of life for Google+
Google+ is experiencing record traffic on the back of its latest features, according to independent figures.
Data analytics company Chitika Insights has been tracking the number of impressions on Google+ over the last 2 weeks. It identified several spikes that appear to correspond to the rollout of new innovations. For example, a growth on 1 November 2011 was traced back to the arrival of Google Reader integration and a new-look Android app for Google+. Similarly, a large jump from 7 November onwards can be attributed to the launch of Google+ Pages.
Google+ retains users
Crucially, the research also suggests that Google+ is managing to retain some of the extra traffic from each spike. Chitika Insights reports that the total number of impressions over the last few days has been the highest on record. Some commentators had suggested Google+ was in decline after failing to capitalise on initial enthusiasm from early adopters.
Gabe Donnini, a data solutions engineer at Chitika, commented: "Traffic following these peaks in traffic is significantly higher than it was previously. This indicates that many of the new features instituted by Google may have effectively driven user engagement by making the service more accessible and integrating further into its multi-product platform."
Daniel Nolan, general manager at theEword, said: "It's certainly interesting to see that Google+ is picking up traffic. Nevertheless, it's clear that Google needs to keep developing innovative new features that encourage people to give the site a chance. I think the majority of people are still unclear about the advantages of Google+ over rival sites like Twitter, Facebook and LinkedIn."
In related news, it seems that big names from outside the tech community are beginning to warm to Google+, which could bode well for the future. The Obama for America campaign - famed for its use of social media - has just set up a page. And pop singer Britney Spears recently overtook Google chief executive officer Larry Page as the most followed person on the site.