If you are like 90% of the people who use Google on a daily basis, when you get to the Google search box you just type what you are looking for and wait the few microseconds it takes for the results page to load up. However there is a small but very active 10% of users who not content with relying on the natural speech type of search enter search terms guided by specific search symbols.
One of these has always been the ‘+’ sign which is used to search for a specific search term plus a related search term. For instance the search term: ‘SEO Help + Book’ would be used to look for websites which contain ‘SEO Help’ as their main reason of activity and also have a book to offer, in SEO.
Thanks to the increasing popularity of the Google +1 Button and Google’s Google Plus social network Google has decided to overturn fifteen years of tradition in search and complete ignore the traditional value of the + search operand by replacing it with inverted commas instead so now instead of typing ‘SEO Help + Book’ as an example you would type, instead ‘SEO Help “Book”’.
There other symbols you can use in search which are all detailed on the official Google site. What is of real value here is that Google has done away with this for a good reason and the reason is Google+ and the fact that network members now are found on the network itself through their name and a ‘+’ in front as in: +DavidAmerland. As Google+ begins to feature more and more, across Google properties on the web the company felt it was important to make the change now.
If you have not yet started to incorporate Google+ in your online marketing plans now is the time to start doing it. The longer you put it off, the harder it will get.