Google’s new social media platform looks set to be the biggest threat to Twitter and Facebook since…well pretty much ever.

Up to the point of writing Google+ has a current following of over 10 million. That might not bowl you over straight away when you consider Facebook has passed 700 million users and Twitter 300+ million. But when you then take into account that Google+ is operating on invites ONLY, and they have only been available for the last two weeks, that is very impressive. According to some models, that actual number could be nearer the 18 million mark.

To try and give a brief overview of what Google+ is, it’s like a colourful, more Googley version of Facebook. Groups of people can be added into ‘circles’, which are then broken down into different types depending on how you know them. It’s a simple drag and drop operation, very easy to get the hang of. Their version of Facebook’s chat is ‘hangouts’. You can chat with the people within your circle using your web cam. Picture galleries are automatically complied for you. It suggests people you may know and who you can invite onto Google+ who aren’t there already.

I’ve only been playing around with it for about two days but it’s fairly easy to get the gist of it. So why the big hype then if we already have an uber successful social media platform? The answer is the mere fact that it’s Google.

I did some investigating earlier. Even though it’s still in it’s trial stages, people with blogs and websites have found a significant increase in traffic thanks to Google’s +1 feature. I have it on my site, you can find it at the bottom of every post. Every time someone clicks on the +1 button, that flags up on that person’s Google+ page, showing everyone that they’ve seen something worth reading. This is proving a brilliant boost for site traffic.

So, if you’re a blogger, then this is something you need to get to grips with now while it’s fresh and not populated with spam advertisers! This is also something that businesses I think could be able to take advantage of. In my opinion this platform is easier to use and navigate than Facebook, therefore making it more accessible to those who think they’re not Internet savvy. It’s easy to collate photos, editing information is done at the click of a button, the interface is clean and simple – it’s a no brainer really. Businesses should be taking advantage of any new way to communicate with it’s potentially massive customer base.