Google+ Has Some Minuses

The Wall Street Journal has an interesting piece on the progress of Google+ since the big roll-out last year. The bottom line is that it’s not doing very well. Google likes to boast that they’ve had 90 million users sign-up since its launch last June—which at first blush sounds really impressive. But it turns out that people are simply signing-up for the service and then spending little to no time on it. The crucial stat is not how many users there are but how much time users spend on the network. When you look at that stat, it paints a pretty grim picture for Google+.

The graphic to the right tells the whole story. It shows the average minutes per visitor to social-media sites in January 2012. Facebook has the lion’s share of the market at 405 minutes per user. Google+ is dead last at 3 minutes per user. Google+ has less time than MySpace! Ouch! How would you like to be the guy at Google that has to answer for that stat?

What surprises me is that these other social-network sites even register on the radar. Tumblr and Pinterest? What’s that? I know LinkedIn from the 100 invitations per day to join from people I haven’t seen since high school. But these others are apparently really popular, yet I have no clue what they are or what their utility is. I think I can be content without finding out.

In any case, it’s an interesting read if you’re into this kind of thing. Read the article here.

(HT: Steve Watters)

8 Responses to Google+ Has Some Minuses

  1. Brent Hobbs February 27, 2012 at 10:39 pm #

    This is exactly what I suspected was going to happen 5 minutes after I signed up for G+ and looked around. (Haven’t been back since.) It was too similar to twitter with little to no advantage.

    The only people I’m aware of who use it just link their twitter accounts so you have a clone of what another network does better.

  2. Jacob Allee February 27, 2012 at 10:54 pm #

    I think G+ has some really cool features and I prefer it to FB any day of the week. If more people would use it it would be awesome. But no one is leaving FB behind for it. The video chat is very cool though.

  3. Collin Garbarino February 28, 2012 at 12:49 am #

    Tumblr is nifty. It’s like a cross between blogging and tweeting.
    You haven’t heard of Pinterest because you’re a guy.

  4. Brian Renshaw February 28, 2012 at 5:45 am #

    Doesn’t surprise me that Google+ isn’t doing so hot, I think in the future something random and unexpected to the consumer will probably take over Facebook, not a social media that is trying to be pushed onto the consumer (like Google + was). I second Collin, if you were a girl you would most definitely know what Pinterest is.

  5. Jason Blair February 28, 2012 at 9:47 am #

    There’s a good rebuttal of this WSJ post by Mark Traphagen at

    • Denny Burk February 28, 2012 at 10:59 am #

      He didn’t refute the stats in the WSJ article. He mainly complained about Google+’s marketing, which would seem to suggest that even Traphagen knows that it’s not going too well.

  6. Ryan D. February 28, 2012 at 10:10 pm #

    G+ and LinkedIn are fairly popular with actual techies– people who make a living in Information Technology or closely related fields. The low volume on Google+ is actually something we like. The posts are more substantial and easier to find because you don’t have to sort through pictures of food, housewives talking about their kids, people posting random Bible verses, not-so-funny funny pictures, political rants, etc. I feel Google+ is like Facebook was in 2006/2007. Facebook is where MySpace was back then– it’s probably already peaked and is in a decline. When/if the masses migrate to Google+, the same user base will migrate somewhere else.

  7. Nephos February 28, 2012 at 11:49 pm #

    The only surprise in this graphic is that Pinterest has such a low number.

    My wife has personally spent enough time there to raise that average several minutes.

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