While Google had primarily been known as a search, it has expanded its services through the years to include a whole host of web development products and services. Things such as emails, blogging tools, news feeds, and even their own web browser have been stamped with the Google brand. Recently, Google launched another product that is a nod to Social networking's growing trend, Google Friend Connect.
Google friend connect a tool that would enable web developers to add social networking features to their websites, simply by adding a few lines of code. Friend Connect provides visitors who have their Google, Yahoo!, AIM, or Open ID accounts to connect through different websites. They would share, comment, and use other social content and applications just by the widget located on the website itself.
The implementation of this tool makes it easier to bridge the gap between social and non-social websites. Nowadays, online activity is all about being able to connect and share with other people. With this kind of service, even previously static websites now have the chance to cater to a more dynamic and more active clientele. Google has also implemented a social bar feature in this new widget to ensure that it would not intrude too much into the original website's site design and content.
Imagine a small business with a website or a blog (Google Friend Connect is integrated with their Blogger weblog publishing service). With this tool embedded in their pages, they would see comments about the site, how many people like them enough to join them and even use it as a market research tool to see their visitors' other sites. It is also a form of spreading the word or indirect marketing, as other people who have “joined” their site can broadcast it to their contacts.
While a relatively new idea, it can’t be denied that there is plenty of potentials, both for business and personal users, for this new Google application.