Today, I got an email from the Google Team letting me know that my Google+ profile was eligible to receive a custom URL. If you are familiar with Google+ you know that both personal profiles and business pages are identified with a format like this – https://plus.google.com/u/0/113882325294045305691 . But now anyone can easily go to my Google+ profile by using the URL http://google.com/+benjaminhong . Much easier on the eyes and the keyboard don’t you think?
For sometime now Google has been allowing custom URL’s but only to a select few celebrity personalities and big name businesses. Today that all changed. The doors have been open for individuals to claim their custom URL but there are still conditions and you do need to receive an email invitation to get one. The Verge (theverge.com) does a great job of covering the details about getting a Google+custom URL . Firstly, to get a personal custom URL, the account must be at least 30 days old. Next there needs to be at least 10 people that have you in their circles. And finally, the Google+ profile must have a profile picture.
So what does this mean for people with a Google+ profile and even for small businesses? Well, the biggest reason I can see this being a value to people are for bloggers, writers, online personalities and even local businesses. Specifically pertaining to local businesses if that business pertains to your image or identity. For example, this can be very useful for real estate agents, local DJ’s, lawyers, and any business where the business is synonymous with who they are as a person. These type of businesses can leverage their custom URL in all their marketing collateral both online and offline. Since custom URL’s are unique, so being able to claim the actual business name definitely has an advantage.