By: Garin Kilpatrick
UPDATE: I recently published the 26 page Google Plus Report and it contains all of these tips and tricks and more so you should download it for free today!
Google Plus has taken off like a bullet and hit twenty million users in just 24 days, a feat that took both Facebook and Twitter over a thousand days to achieve.
With this impressive growth in mind Google+ might one day dethrone Facebook as the largest Social Media network, but currently Facebook is still leaps and bounds ahead as they close the gap to a billion users a little more each day.
Soon Google will revive real-time search by including updates from Google+ updates within regular search results.
In this post I explain about many different powerful Google+ tools, websites, and browser extensions and how the features they have can help you.
Find people on Plus is a directory of people on Plus, sorted by many different credentials such as location, occupation, etc.
Make sure to add yourself to the directory if you check this site out!
2. G+ Search
Search Public Google+ Content with this unofficial Google custom search engine.
This site shows you where you can “Hangout” on Google+ by giving you an at-a-glance overview of public Hangouts, as well as the option to add your own Hangout.
This site is basically a directory of Google Plus users. First you can view all groups to see a tag cloud of all groups that have been created, then you can add yourself to the groups that are the most relevant to you. This website reminds me of the Twitter directory wefollow.
Gplus.to is a simple tool that enables you to make a short link for your Google+ profile.
By registering an account with this website (you can log in with your Google account) you can start to track your progress in terms of how many people have included you in their circles.
Once you register you will get a rank among all people who have registered for tracking, which is currently over 45,500 people.
7. +Everything (Chrome)
With this app, the Google+ bar follows you everywhere around the web so that you can see if there are notifications waiting for you, or easily share any web page or access any of the many different Google apps.
8. GTools+ (Chrome)
GTools+ add many useful features for Google+ services. You can:
- Stick the Google+ bar
- Translate posts
- Customize notification color
- Change the Google chat place
- Add notifications for Gmail and Reader and more
9. Google+Tweet (IE, Chrome, Firefox)
This app adds a Twitter tab to Google+.
10. Google+Facebook (Firefox, Chrome)
Now there is a extension called Google+Facebook that allows you to see your Facebook stream inside Google+.
Simply Connect to Facebook, and you will be able to post status updates and view your stream within the Google+ Facebook tab.
Note: There are several bugs noted with this extension that you should be aware of before you install it.
11. Color Plus (Chrome)
Color Plus is a Chrome extension that lets you change the color of the Google Plus bar because the gray is utterly boring.
After I installed this extension I changed the color of my G+ bar to blue!
12. Start G+ (Chrome)
Start Google+ is designed to help you jump right in to Google’s new social network. Here’s a few things that the plugin can do:
- Put your Facebook and Twitter streams inside your Google Plus stream, complete with “Stream” links on the side and rich media
- Automatically post to Facebook AND Twitter whenever you share something on Google Plus (you can turn this on/off from within the share window in Google Plus – see the screenshots)
- Add a Gmail inbox notifier to the top bar, so that you do not have to keep a gmail tab open. Clicking on the Gmail icon shows a menu with the unread messages that let you access your emails directly inside Google+.
13. +Photo Zoom
+Photo Zoom is a simple extension providing fast and simple zooming for photos within your Google+ Stream.
Just hover over the image you wish to zoom and +Photo Zoom will load the enlarged version of the picture.
14. Get your Facebook Photos with Move2Picasa (Chrome)
Google+ syncs with your photos stored in Picasa.
That’s good if you’re a Picasa user, but what if most of your photos live on Facebook?
Give Move2Picasa a whirl. It’ll easily import them all.
15. Usability Boost for Google Plus (Chrome)
This extension will help you visualize and focus on the content within Google Plus.
Main features of this extension are:
- Small CSS changes that put the focus on the content, separating visually posts and comments
- The Google/Notification bar stays at a fixed position on top so you’ll never miss a notification again !
- Displays a direct link to mute post
16. Connect Twitter, Facebook and Google+ accounts with ManageFlitter
Cause+ is a site where you can find active causes on Google+, and promote your cause if you have one.
This service lets users create a shorter URL for Google+ profiles and enables them to share, track and analyze profile traffic.
This wiki is a useful source for Google+ newcomers. The wiki covers posting, managing circles, hotkeys and more.
20. Google+ Counter
The slogan of this site is “helping you find people on Google+.”
This robust extension for Chrome adds several features to the stock version of Google+. These include:
- Share Google+ Posts with people on twitter.
- Notifier – Get desktop notifications on new posts, also with sound. (mouse over notification to freeze it)
- Translate posts with Google Translate to language specified by you
- Bookmark Google+ posts for reading them later. Faster and easier!
- +1 public Google+ posts to aggregate them to the +1′s tab of your Google+ profile
- Bookmark posts on Delicious
- Share posts on facebook
- Linked hashtags in posts for better search
- And more!
22. Facebook Friends Exporter
23. Extended Share for Google Plus (Chrome)
Future additions to this project will allow you to auto share with a single click instead of going through the hassle of clicking multiple times, for a better overall experience.
24. Liquid G+ (Firefox, Chrome, Opera, IE)
Adds columns to your Google+ screen just give a magazine view style.
25. +1 Plus One Extension (Chrome)
This extension lets you easily +1 any web page.
Just simple as one click!
26. Plus Minus (Chrome)
Plus Minus allows you to filter your Google+ stream and view only posts from people in the circles that matter the most to you.
27. Surplus (Chrome)
The notifications on Google+ are amazing, but to actually have them pop up on your browser, you need to be on one of the Google websites.
Making this more easy and helping Google+ get more addictive, this chrome extension lets you access your notifications and make a new post anywhere on internet.
This extension lets you check, read, comment and share without actually visiting any google website.
28. Replies and more for Google+ plus (Chrome)
This extension for Chrome adds links to posts in your stream that make it easy for you to reply to the author of the post.
This plugin also makes it easy for you to share a post via Twitter, Facebook, and email, and comes with several other features.
Instaport is a simple two step process for exporting your instagram photos, so that you can upload them to Google+!
Once your instagram photos are uploaded you can sync your instagram photos with Google+ by using Picasa, but keep in mind before you attempt this that setting up this process requires some tech savvy.
With the Widgets Plus Google+ widget you can show your visitors that you are on Google+ and make it easy for them to connect with you.
I installed a Google+ widget about half way down my sidebar so check it out there to see it in action!
Use these symbols if you want the text you are posting on Google Plus to be Bolded Italicized, or
UPDATE: Don’t forget to grab your copy of the 26 page Google Plus Report for all of these tips and tricks and over 20 more. Download it for free today!
I hope the above tips and tools help to make your Google+ experience more awesome than ever.
Let us know what you think of Google+ in the comments below!