After weeks of social search speculation, TechCrunch has broken news that the Google +1 button will launch tomorrow, June 1. The company was alerted when one of Google's launch partners reached out to TechCrunch for a potential interview in relation to the social plugin.
The Google +1 button has been on marketers' minds since the +1 icon first appeared alongside search engine results in March. It serves as a social recommendation for individual results, encouraging clicks. Up to this point, the +1 service has been available only on SERPS, which means consumers have had to +1 content directly in results (presumably before reading it).
The +1 button was previewed at the Google I/O conference earlier this month. The button serves as a plugin marketers can add to their site content – whether individual articles or homepages. During the conference, Google executives said the button would be available in a “matter of weeks,” and it seems they are holding true to their word.
The development is not only important to garnering social advocacy for content pages, but perhaps also for improving search rankings. During a recent live question and answer session, Google's Matt Cutts explained that using Google +1 data as a ranking signal is a strong possibility. “It's definitely a signal we're paying a lot of attention to,” Search Engine Land quotes Cutts as saying. “It has tons of potential. It looks very promising.”
Marketers should stay tuned for official word from Google and button availability.