YouTube comment system changes once again – an SEO company explains why

January 9, 2014 - Digital State Marketing

It seems Google have backtracked on one of their biggest releases and have made adaptations due to their consumers opinions and complaints.  We’re talking about the integration of YouTube with Google+. As an SEO company, it’s clear that Google+ is central to the marketing of a website so we wanted to get some clarity on this.

At Digital State Marketing, we’ve been encouraging our clients to get ahead of the game when it comes to Google+. Having company pages active and ensuring the settings are all correct in order to really benefit is something we explain to all clients. We’ll not go into why here as this is a subject all my itself and can be found in recent articles by ourselves.

Right now, it is true that Google+ doesn’t have the social immersion that Facebook or Twitter boast.  Yet, in the business world in particular, this trend is certainly growing. YouTube on the other hand, is an already existing, extremely successful platform having over 1 billion unique users every month (Stats: http://www.youtube.com/yt/press/en-GB/statistics.html) . It’s clearly a phenomenon a central plank of many users online experience and Google recognises it as such.

It makes sense to use a popular asset to leverage popularity towards another, related, asset.  However, Google clearly misjudged the moment as it tried to force people to accept Google+.

Back in November last year, Google changed it’s YouTube property to only allow comments from Google+ accounts. The anonymity that had been enjoyed on YouTube was removed. Users were thus forced to sign up to Google+ if they wanted to comment and amend their comments on YouTube. The result – many stopped commenting; something which Google absolutely would not have wanted. After all, advertising is hard to sell if engagement is dropping off.

The tools used to manage comments also changed – the ability to manage comments easily from the YouTube Inbox was removed – which played a part in user grievances. A petition was soon set up after it’s release and quickly reached it’s target of 200,000 signatures and quite simply, the YouTube world went mad.

Google have since released a new comments management system in order to calm the response over the lack of the old YouTube Inbox. Users are at least now able to respond and deal with comments in one place which resolves one of the main gripes.

What’s astounding is the fact the initial release was in November, and less than 3 months later a major upgrade was required as a direct result of consumer opinion. The speed behind this is simply fantastic. Granted there will be more releases to come, but it does show Google’s determination to protect its market.

What does this mean for Google+? Well, nothing really has changed there. There’s no denying Google+ is growing. Perhaps a little slower than Google would want, but it is growing, and being a part of YouTube will help in the long term.

Is your business active on Google+? Contact us today to see how, as a dedicated seo company, we can help you take your Google+ (and other social media platforms) forward.