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Google+

Google+ Posts Just Got Better: Now Featuring Large, Facebook-like Thumbnails

Google+ updated their user interface this week to make link posts stand out in the stream with bold titles and extra large images. The change is very similar to how Facebook handles link-based posts.

Link posts now feature a large thumbnail image that spans the entire post, a small snippet of text, as well as a link to the source’s Google+ page (if they have one). This is a drastic change from the old design which was just a small, square thumbnail and a headline.

The change was noticed by Google Plus Daily, who also reported in the span of a weekend the change had been reversed and reimplemented. For now, at least, the change appears to be here to stay.

Some anticipated benefits of this change are higher click-through rates, more follows, and a decreased need to upload your own image into a post in order to make it stand out. Of course, it also makes Google+ look a whole lot prettier since those small thumbnails they were using before weren’t much to look at.

Here’s an example of what the new link posts look like:

While trying to get these new thumbnails to trigger I found it didn’t work perfectly every time. I had to try a few different links before getting Google+ to display one of these thumbnails.

From my experience I discovered these new thumbnails work best when the post has a ‘Featured Image’, which can be defined if you use WordPress or a similar CMS as your publishing platform.

Hopefully Google changes this in the future to be a little more user friendly. Ideally the new thumbnails should trigger with all links, just like Facebook.

While not the biggest change, still very much worth noting since it could potentially have a profound effect on the referral traffic your website gets from Google+.

 Google+ Posts Just Got Better: Now Featuring Large, Facebook like Thumbnails

Matt Southern

Freelance Writer at MattSouthern.com
Matt Southern is the lead news writer at Search Engine Journal. His passion for helping people in all aspects of online marketing flows through in the expert articles he contributes to many well respected publications across the web. Contact him via his website if you'd like him to write for you.
 Google+ Posts Just Got Better: Now Featuring Large, Facebook like Thumbnails

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8 thoughts on “Google+ Posts Just Got Better: Now Featuring Large, Facebook-like Thumbnails

  1. I think Google+ is much better than Facebook. Literally when i use Google+, its more user friendly and it has soft theme to represent posts and plus… Its new features are really awesome in use and easily understandable.

  2. I’ve noticed the new format on the web browser version of Google+. However, it hasn’t rolled out to my Google+ Android app yet, which is where it would have the most impact.

  3. Glad I found this, because I’m having an issue I can’t seem to resolve: When I try to share something from my site on Google Plus, the featured image appears to be loading up as before, but once I click “share,” it changes to some random image from my site’s sidebar. I tried posting a different item and it worked okay, but this one just keeps switching. Anyone have any idea what’s going on?