As Google rolls out it’s +1 feature, there are many other implications that a global “like” feature could have on search. At present, ‘like’ systems are somewhat included within themselves. For example if you like something on Facebook, or tweet a page, it’s been proven that this gives minor search result benefits (probably short term benefits), but it’s nothing like as apparent on a global scale than the Google +1 feature we’re seeing now. These sort of social ‘likes’ are great to get attention within the social network itself, but getting attention on Google as a whole is a totally different ball game.
Consider that Google can claim 95%+ of search traffic globally, and suddenly the +1 feature sinks in.
The power of +1 can and will be immense.
Tweeting a page, Liking a page, Whatever social-thing you do with a page, are all beneficial – but nothing like on this scale. In comparison to Google, Twitter and Facebook are used on a minute scale; the potential for +1 is therefore huge. In other words, Like a page on Facebook, and great, all your friends on Facebook know about it. However not everyone’s on Facebook; despite their huge registered member figures, they’re not, and the same goes for Twitter obviously. Google on the other hand, with such a huge domination of the search business, can claim to have just about everyone online using their service perhaps at least once every couple of days. If Google can implement the +1 system well enough that the majority of searchers are using +1 every now and then, it will have much more of a profound effect than Tweeting or Liking has ever done, purely due to traffic reasons.
Consider also that Google owns Youtube, which has its own ‘Like’ feature. What if Youtube likes were replaced with Youtube/Google +1s? Suddenly if you like a video, it could bump it up the search results for your online social friends. The possibilities are somewhat endless; perhaps Google could even track ‘Likes’ and Tweets of pages combined with it’s own +1s (the +1 icon is tabbed, is it not?) to provide some seriously great search results.