Google Plus Tutorial: How To Make Your Stay Pleasant And Useful

Google-Plus-Tutorial--How-To-Make-Your-Stay-Pleasant-And-UsefulOK now that I have had my hands enough on Google plus, I wish to share a tutorial or a guide to play with many things around in Google plus. I am also getting questions everyday from my friends asking the why’s and how’s of using it. This tutorial is all about how to use Google+.

So lets dive in.

Sending And Accepting Invitations

It could be seriously annoying when some of your friends are already jumping around with plus, and you are not able to get in. At the moment Google plus is running in test mode and hence they are not allowing everybody to get in.

There is no “official” invite button yet. But you can still send an invitation by sharing something with your friend. This step assumes that you are already on plus, of course.

You can do this in two ways:

1. If you have lots of invites to send, you can first create circles (more on it below). And then share something with that circle.

2. Or you can share something to people’s email directly.

The second step wants you to add people while sharing while the first one takes less time.

Sending google plus invite by sharing something

In any case you have to click “Add circles or people to share with” and then you will be provided with options to choose circles (if you have already created them) or choose people by email.

When you press share, you have sent an invite.

Now what if you are not on plus, and your friend shares something with you?

You will receive an email like this-

accepting google plus invitation by email

Click to enlarge….

It will be somewhat confusing to not to see a “Join” button even though the subject of your email says “…… invited you to join google+”. You have to click “Learn more about Google+” and you will be in (if Google permits).

Creating circles

Once you are inside Google+, just click on circles as shown below

google plus circles

Once you are inside the circle, you can create new circles and/or use existing ones. By default there are 4 circles already available: Friends, Family, Acquaintances and Following. You can add people to these circles. You can also create a new circle by clicking on the empty circle on the left.

You can find people by typing their name or email (once you start typing you will be provided with results, so no need to remember full names/emails) in the box that says Find and invite people (shown above partially next to circles symbol).

creating new circles and adding people to google plus circles

Click to enlarge….

Now you can simply drag and drop a person into an appropriate circle to add them. Alternatively you can also remove a person by dragging them out from a circle.

You can put the same person to multiple circles. For instance if you friend is also a blogger and is also your client, you may want to put him in three circles.

Now in the list of people shown above, you will see a little email envelope next to certain persons, and nothing with the others.

Those with the email icon are the ones that are not yet using Google plus. Anything you share with them will go to their inbox. While the others are using plus and will get your shares in their stream.

Settings To Minimize Annoying Notifications

Yes, you heard me right. Although Google plus is good with privacy issues, it can still be annoying with the notifications. You get notified by email whenever someone

  • +1s your share
  • comments on your share
  • comments on someone’s share that you commented on
  • reshares your share…
  • and so on.

You know when you get into a A-list blogger’s post and leave a comment, your inbox will be flooded with notifications that there has been a new comment in the post you commented on. This is really annoying.

But you can control all these. Click on options at the top right and choose Google+ settings

google plus options

Once you select that you will be presented with delivery preferences to set up. You can tick/untick anything as you wish.

set google plus delivery preferencesYou will always find Google+ notifications on top right even when you are inside Gmail (next to your email address, a number will appear in red).

Want a clean stream?

Not all posts shared by the people you follow are interesting to you. And you don’t want to have all those comments, always. So if you find an uninteresting post or a post with lots of comments that makes your stream cluttered, you can simply mute that post. Here’s how to do it

how to mute posts in your google plus stream

Once you have muted a post, you won’t see it in your stream anymore.

PS: No offense against the post shown above and I have not actually muted in on my wall. The picture is just for illustration.

Little Tips To Use Google+ Effectively

Tagging someone :

You can use +name if you want to tag someone while you share something. When you tag someone they will be notified of it. This is a great way to engage others in conversation and improve interactions. But do not tag irrelevantly, that will annoy people for sure.

how to tag others in google plus

Connecting your other social media accounts:

Remember when you selected Google+ options? Right in that screen on the left, you will find Connected accounts. Click on it and add social media accounts.

connect social media accounts to google plus

Click to enlarge….


These are the shortcuts you could use to spice up your shares-

*text* makes the text bold

_text_ makes the text italic

-text- strikes through the text


I have already talked about sparks in this post: Google+ Circles And Sparks, What Do Bloggers Have In Them?

Although I have focused on benefits for bloggers there, it will apply to anyone. You can search and add any of your interests and later on click them to catch up with latest news and hop around your favorite topic.


Sorry to disappoint you but I have not tried it much to write about it. If I find interesting things to share I surely will!

What have I forgot? What is your experience on using Google+? Like it, love it or hate it? Share your thoughts in the comments.

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  1. Salim says

  2. Anna says

    I haven’t started Google+ yet, but you make me really interested in it. What stops me is that I have many other accounts in different social networks and I am afraid I will get crazy from all of them

  3. Ross says

    No doubt, Google puls is an interesting social networking site. Most important thing which I like is that I can communicate with each each of my circle and people in other circle can not aware of it. Through this I can take my family away from my office colleague or my friends. According to this Feature, I like it.

  4. Ana @ email autoresponder says

    I can’t believe I now need to track yet another social network! :)

    I am very cautious about this one, once again – I’d hate to put in too much time into it just to see it go the Google Buzz way.

    Very helpful post, Jane; I learned a few tricks!

    • Jane SheebaJane Sheeba says


      That was my initial feeling too when I heard about the plus – “Ah another social site”. But this one seems to be lot of fun and useful. Less clutter and spam. I am addicted already!


  5. Steve says


    I have been a little hesitant about getting to involved with Google plus. Plus I have frankly been swamped with stuff to do.

    It really does sound great and once I get back from the vacation I am head on next week I will definitely have to get rolling on this. thanks for some great info on how to get it going!

    • Jane SheebaJane Sheeba says

      Steve, don’t hesitate, join the great place; of course when you have time. But you will surely need it anyway! If not totally, you will need to at least show your face there! Friends like me are waiting for you over there!

  6. SeoDezinSeoDezin says

    Facebook has some limitations that has recovered by Google +1. There is no privacy in case of facebook but Google +1 separate between family and friends.

  7. Nawaz@fantastic samsNawaz@fantastic sams says

    you have shared the anatomy of the Google +1. Your this post has created interest in me to explore Google +1.

  8. Ray@dolphin tutorials says

    Wow the google plus isn’t really public yet, and you already have a tutorial how to use a few things. Totally cool and kudos for that. Once it becomes more public you might have to update us and refresh our memories a little. I will be curious to how google plus does up against facebook.

    • Jane SheebaJane Sheeba says

      I was lucky to be able to get in, even though I was late. Since I joined and started sharing and sending out invites, I got numerous questions from people about its usage. So I thought I could make up a tutorial. Glad that you liked it Ray :)

    • Jane SheebaJane Sheeba says

      Glad that I could assist you Martin. Let me know if you need any help or have more questions about plus :)

    • Jane SheebaJane Sheeba says

      Rana, “fresh and useful” that’s well said. That’s what exactly I miss in Facebook and feel about Google plus.

  9. Usman@FirstHostingUsman@FirstHosting says

    haha Jane!

    my friend is constantly asking me for an invite. and I don’t really had time to dig into it and find how to do that, but its really easy :)

  10. Kathy says

    Hi Jane,

    I have to say thank you for the extensive review. Have yet to get in and am excited get started! While there are many options within each area, your step by step approach makes it seem a rather simple set up.

    I can’t wait to read your review on the hang out.

    • Jane SheebaJane Sheeba says

      Kathy, glad that I could be of help. Yes I am dying to try the hangout as well. But I have most friends on the other side of the globe and have difficulties in agreeing with a time. They sometimes choose a time when I look too shabby and sleepy, you know I can’t agree for a video chat that way! LOL.

  11. adnan@googleadnan@google says

    your tips are great for other people who havent clicked on to how to get invited or how to invite.. i worked it out myself and but have a hard time explaining this to people that share something and it will work.. so im directing them here till i find time to write my own article lol

    • Jane SheebaJane Sheeba says

      Glad that I could give you a helping hand. Until you write a tutorial of your own, you are most welcome to direct your friends here. I’ll be very happy to be of more help.

  12. JamesJames says

    With the Google +1 button, Google is able to generate a new ranking picture that is based on social recommendations and not on on page and off page factors such as links and they are not dependent on external social networking metrics of leading social networking sites like facebook, twitter, etc.

    • Jane SheebaJane Sheeba says

      Well, yes even though a “project” like this has not yet been announced explicitly but that is what most people expect from the big G. That it will use G+ data to modulate search engines. It is both a good and a bad thing.

  13. Harvey says

    Hi Jane,

    Love your blog! One quick question how do I get a google + icon for people to +1 me or my website such as the one here on your blog?

  14. Harvey says

    As a small business owner I think Google+ will be a very useful tool to interact in real time with my customers. The beauty of the + circles allow me to disconnect my customers completely from my other circles creating a more professional environment on the social network. Think about it..You can create a hangout on google+ or a huddle on your phone app available only to your customer circle. Here they will be able to communicate directly with me the President of the company. It doesnt get more intimate than that other than a face to face meeting and even that is possible in (Hangout) your google+ desktop version videochat :o)

  15. hectorhector says

    How would I go about making my stream only visible to me. Meaning, I dont want anyone but me seeing my stream. Is this possible?

  16. Ricardus says

    I;ve been following your posts this few recent weeks and I must say your post are very comprehensive and very helpful. Thanks a lot for all the details you provided here.

  17. john@carpet tile says

    This is really well written and easy to follow. I’m looking forward to the day when I can give up Facebook for Google+. This makes much more sense to me. I think a lot of people feel the same. At lease according to the comments on this post.

  18. LaurieLaurie says

    I’m not going to lie, Google+ STILL seems kind of confusing to me, even after reading this ultra helpful tutorial. Having said that, though, I feel like I have a far better grasp on what it’s about, enough that I’ll be able to use it without floundering around like I have been doing lately. 😉


  19. Karan Lugani@ Computer Tricks| Making Money|Blogging TipsKaran Lugani@ Computer Tricks| Making Money|Blogging Tips says

    You’re right . My start with Google + was little cheeky (for everyone) as everyone would have to beg for Google + Invite from here and there. But now I am certainly stable on it but it kind of bored me up . Its loads of work for Google to do to stick people otherwise the current scenario ie. just 1 Million Actual Returning(Active) users will never make it lead from Facebook.

  20. seomaster440seomaster440 says

    Promoting google+ votes is becoming a very hot business. Using these types of services could have negative or positive affects on SEO.
    We just have to see how google treats them. Another place to buy google plus votes is
    Will be interesting to see how this evolves over the next few months.

  21. John says

    What a great guide to Google plus newbies like me!
    Thanks for sharing your knowledge on how to use Google plus. It really helped me a lot.

  22. says

    Google+ really a popular thread today.Its create challenges with other social media like facebook etc.
    I am also a user of google+.Now a day every websites google+ likes are also most popular like facebook likes. Make new friends and connect your friends on google+

  23. PrincePrince says

    Sponsoredplus is a social marketing company focused on providing valuable google+ votes.just visit, Buying Plus Ones can drastically improve your search engine ranking.

  24. Milet McqueenMilet Mcqueen says

    Great write up!! Based on my experience almost all social networking sites are very much similar to each other.

  25. Alisha NeuronAlisha Neuron says

    I got wonderful information here but I’m a little bit confusion here. Can you solve this, I want to add the people region specific, how can I do that?

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