Google Unifying And Putting More Emphasis On “Profiles”

Google Operating System discusses the integration of Google Profiles into most Google services and products and the unification of disparate profiles into a single master profile. Whether and how this might ultimately be integrated with Google’s newly reinvigorated social network, Orkut, is unclear. Although they are much less extensive, Profiles may turn out to be to Orkut what Shopping became to Froogle — a successor and repositioned product. As Google Operating System points out, the new Profiles are already in use in several areas on Google, such as Maps and Reader.

Many things are interesting about this. First, it makes good sense for users and for Google to offer a unified, single profile system. People already have what might be called “profile fatigue;” why fill out unique profiles for each product on Google? Second, and more provocatively, it potentially turns Google itself into something of a social network, assuming widespread adoption.

ScreenHunter_1088.jpg Privacy advocates will be concerned about how Google might use the information across its network and whether there will be appropriate privacy safeguards. (Think Facebook data mining, only potentially more pervasive and effective.) Google will assert that it won’t improperly use personal information.

Profiles could play into personalized search as well as ad targeting (local, demographic) in the same way that Web history is starting to play into personalized search. For example, for local search and AdWords, the existence of user location on a profile could help with disambiguation and more accurate geotargeting in many cases. (In mobile, “My Location” will offer much more precise targeting next year.)

The existence of uniform profiles also could serve to reinforce Google usage in many ways by helping provide broader and deeper integration of its products. It could also boost Checkout and will likely be integrated with Google Accounts eventually (with shipping and credit card information). Required Google registration for products like GMail and for My Maps represents a foot in the door for enhanced profiles. Of course, it remains to be seen how many people fill out Profiles — and how extensively.

There’s more discussion at Techmeme.

Related Topics: Channel: Social | Google: Accounts & Profiles | Google: OpenSocial


About The Author: is a Contributing Editor at Search Engine Land. He writes a personal blog Screenwerk, about SoLoMo issues and connecting the dots between online and offline. He also posts at Internet2Go, which is focused on the mobile Internet. Follow him @gsterling.

Connect with the author via: Email | Twitter | Google+ | LinkedIn


Get all the top search stories emailed daily!  


Other ways to share:

Read before commenting! We welcome constructive comments and allow any that meet our common sense criteria. This means being respectful and polite to others. It means providing helpful information that contributes to a story or discussion. It means leaving links only that substantially add further to a discussion. Comments using foul language, being disrespectful to others or otherwise violating what we believe are common sense standards of discussion will be deleted. Comments may also be removed if they are posted from anonymous accounts. You can read more about our comments policy here.

Comments are closed.

Get Our News, Everywhere!

Daily Email:

Follow Search Engine Land on Twitter @sengineland Like Search Engine Land on Facebook Follow Search Engine Land on Google+ Get the Search Engine Land Feed Connect with Search Engine Land on LinkedIn Check out our Tumblr! See us on Pinterest


Click to watch SMX conference video

Join us at one of our SMX or MarTech events:

United States


Australia & China

Learn more about: SMX | MarTech

Free Daily Search News Recap!

SearchCap is a once-per-day newsletter update - sign up below and get the news delivered to you!



Search Engine Land Periodic Table of SEO Success Factors

Get Your Copy
Read The Full SEO Guide