Posted August 9, 2012 3:09 pm by with 0 comments

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It’s only August, but I’m ready to give out my award for the best infographic graphic of the year. It’s the header from the Umpf’s examination of one of life’s great mysteries: Is Google+ really popular or is it a ghost town?

Google is cagey about releasing stats on Google+ and when they do, it’s often hard to distinguish general Google users from those actually on the social network. The current estimate is 170 million Google+ accounts, which would make it the second most popular social network after Facebook. But, as we all know, having a lot of signups does not an active community make. For marketers, it’s interaction that counts, so Umpf counted it.

They did this by cataloging 100 articles from well-known websites covering news, entertainment, tech, and business. Then they used those handy-dandy share counters to add up the number of shares per social media network. Now, before you say hey, it’s only 100 data points and that’s not enough – it is enough. It’s a random sampling that is as likely to give you the full picture as well as 10 times that amount of data.

Here’s what they found:

For every 100 million users, the following number were likely to share an online story:

Twitter, 197.3 people were likely to share an online story
Facebook, 41.8 people were likely to share an online story
LinkedIn, 15.2 people were likely to share an online story
Google+, 6.0 people were likely to share an online story

Ouch! Not only is Google+ on the bottom, it’s been stomped on by Twitter! It’s Godzilla vs Tokyo all over again. Is anyone actually surprised? The sad thing is, I keep throwing Google+ a bone when I share tech or nerdy articles. They seem so at home there, but it’s probably a wasted click. Business and Technology are the two areas with the highest share proportion (see bottom of infographic) and still they don’t even crack the 2% mark.

So there you have it. Google+ is officially a ghost town. The structures are there, the tumbleweeds roll through now and then, but the human beings have done got gone.

Maybe Google can turn it into a tourist trap. And on the left you see the last posts of Kermit the Frog. Oh, those were the days.