One of the perks for brands who were also active on Google+ is that their most recent post on Google+ would also be featured in the knowledge panel for their brand or company, whenever it was triggered in a regular Google search result. Not any longer. Google has removed all Google+ posts from being displayed on those knowledge panels.
This change affects users who are both logged in and logged out. And they are still removed even if a searcher follows that brand on Google+.
And of course, this also raises the question – once again – of the future of Google+ when they are removing one of the key reasons brands were active on it.
Here is how a knowledge panel currently appears:
They vanished from knowledge panels very recently, as they were still being displayed earlier in June.
Local knowledge panels are still displaying relevant reviews through Google+, but no Google+ posts are being displayed either.
Google AdWords ads are still referencing the number of followers a business has on Google+, if the extension is triggered in the ad.
Google+ posts are still being displayed on the knowledge panel that will trigger when you search for the personal name of someone you follow on Google+, when you search while logged into your Google account. But these are personalized searches displayed only to you.
But curiously, when you search for a well known person you do have in a circle on Google+ but who also triggers a knowledge panel in the regular search results, neither the circle information nor the recent posts from Google+ will display.
They are displaying some Google+ posts in a knowledge panel but only when those brands do NOT trigger a regular knowledge panel. However, these are specific Google+ boxes only, with follow buttons, not traditional knowledge panels.
So what does this mean for the future of Google+? There has been a lot of talk recently about where Google+ is headed, particularly with their recent split of Google Photos from the Google+ product. And it is hard not to think that the removal of these Google+ posts from knowledge panels is pretty significant.
It also removes one of the primary reasons many brands were active on Google+. It not only increased the size of the knowledge panel, but was essentially free advertising in the search results when those knowledge panels were triggered, and could even show eye-catching animated images in the knowledge panel too.
Businesses will have to assess the amount of time they devote to Google+ now that the posts no longer appear in the knowledge graph. However, Google+ posts can still display in the search results for those that follow the brand on Google+ and they can appear in the “In the news” section, which will still be worth it for those who may be trying to combat a negative reputation.
The change seems to have been quietly made, but they are gone for all brands at this time from their regular knowledge panel.
Latest posts by Jennifer Slegg (see all)
- No More Numbered Updates for Google Penguin - January 24, 2017
- Google Will Be Transparent About Substantial Penguin Changes - January 24, 2017
- Country & Language Selector Popups Impacted by Google’s Mobile Interstitial Change - January 23, 2017
- Google Testing Price Trends for Local Hotel Listings - January 20, 2017
- Bing Testing “Send Directions to Phone” Test in Local Knowledge Panel - January 20, 2017