Google+ tips and tricks

Use circles to your advantage. Circles serve to both filter who you share with and also what you see. Don’t go crazy creating too many circles. Start simple and add as you need. You can create a special circle called ‘preferred stream’ and add only those people whose stream you want to appear on your home page. This is an easy and effective way to cut down the noise.

Basic tips for new users

Circles

  • Use circles to your advantage. Circles serve two functions. They filter who you share with and also what you see. Think of them as send and receive. Unlike Facebook where you have one to one relationships with your friends. Circles can be a one to one mutual relationship if you choose or it can be a one way relationship where someone follows you or you follow them.
  • Don’t go crazy creating too many circles. Start simple and add as you need. You can create a special circle called ‘preferred stream’ and add only those people whose stream you want to appear on your home page. This is an easy and effective way to cut down the noise.
  • Don’t panic. Names of circles are known only to the creator. You have no control who adds you to what circles just like you can’t stop people from making a paper list of ‘most awesome’ and putting you on it.
  • When someone adds you to a circle, you are under no obligation to add them to a circle. If you don’t, they are essentially a follower. They can see your public posts in their stream but you will not see them in your stream unless you click on Incoming circle.
  • You cannot “approve” or “accept” who adds you to their circles. If you do nothing when they add you, it is like them bookmarking your Google+ profile. It has zero impact on you. If you don’t want your name displayed along with others in their circle, you can hide that following the video below.
  • While managing your circles, use Ctrl – to reduced the font size so more badges show up for you to drag and drop. Ctrl zero resets it.
  • Concerned about privacy? Look here for a list of outstanding privacy issues.
  • Manage how people from your circles appear to everyone on your Profile – Open your Google+ profile and click edit. Click the round black-grey icon under the avatar and select the desired options. You can also choose to hide the “Have you in Circles” box. See short demo video.
  • There is no way to post to someone’s wall like on Facebook. To post to their wall, use the share feature and only share it with them. In effect, you are sharing with a circle of one.
  • There is no way to email someone who has not enabled email on their profile. To get around this, share a post with just them. After you share it, disable reshare using the options menu on the right and only they will see the post. It will not appear on your profile. They can comment on it but not reshare it.
  • Email is disabled by default. To enable your email and allow others to contact you, edit your profile and turn it on by clicking the button under the avatar. Learn how.
  • Make +1 Tab viewable – The +1 tab on your Google+ profile is disabled by default and hidden to the public. To make it public, visit your profile – Edit profile. Click on +1’s  tab and tick mark the option ‘Show this tab on my profile’. Now everyone would be able to see the +1s by you. (It only shows the +1s that you’ve done on any webpage outside of Google+).
  • Import your Facebook friends using Yahoo Mail as the transport.
  • Modify your notification settings before your inbox gets flooded. They are all turned on by default. If you entered your cell phone number, edit the settings right away or you’ll be getting a lot of updates in the middle of the night.
  • Getting too many notifications from a post your commented on? Just click mute this post on the bottom right when you click on that notification.
  • Notifications appear as a number in red on the top right but clicking that gives you a host of interactive features such as adding people to circles, blocking people, and replying to post without navigating away from you home page.
  • New. Users will be able to edit their profile and select ‘only you’ in the gender field. This opens the door for genderless profiles such businesses and organizations.

Share box

  • Posting updates in Stream is just like posting updates on Facebook Share. But on Google+ you can also share with those not on Google+. Simply enter an email and they will get it via email.
  • Sharing with Extended circles is sharing with your circle and those in their circles, limited by privacy settings. The list of those in extended circles is dynamic and is also used to suggest friends to add to your circles.
  • Sharing with Public is everyone who has added you in circles plus your wall which means anyone on the web who goes to your profile can see it.
  • Edit is an option available to both original posts and comments. Click the options menu to the right of your post. In the same menu, you can also delete, link to post, disable comment, and/or disable reshare.
  • Text formatting options:  (*)bold(*), (_)italics(_) and (-)strike-through(-)
  • Animated GIFs are supported for better or worse.
  • Post photos, links, or video from your computer simply by dragging and dropping into the share box after it has been opened.
  • Chat box is resizable. Just pop out the chat box first and drag the corner to resize.
  • Use + or @  to mention someone in the comment or post. This does not work while posting comments in the notification box. New: When you disable reshare from the post drop-down menu, it also disables +mentions to prevent expanding the original post visibility and help you control who’s allowed to see your post.
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