Google+ Gets A New Look With Interactive Navigation & “Timeline-esque” Profiles

Big changes are waiting for you the next time you log into your Google+ page.  Today Google’s social network launched a total refresh of the look, making images and videos larger and navigation customizable.  The design fits very well with the new streamlined Google look and helps to draw more attention to the content that users are sharing:

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Overall, this is a very large change that should make the Google+ experience better for users.  Some of the highlights include:

Bigger Photos & Video

While Google+ has already been doing a good job at showcasing media, the new change will draw even more attention to content shared on the network.  One photo will now take up nearly all the above-the-fold area with the new change:

In addition to the change, a new “insta-gallery” will appear when you hover over a photo, making it easier to see an entire photoset.


The “What’s Hot” section of Google has now been re-named “explore.”  Within the new Explore section users will be able to pull up current trends on Google+ as well as viewing popular content.

Timeline-esque Profile Pages

One of the largest changes that you may notice is what Google glazes over in the official announcement.  All new profile pages are coming that mimic Facebook’s Timeline layout.  Users can upload a large horizontal image that shows up alongside their profile picture:

This of course should help Google+ become a more personalized experience and compete with Facebook.

Navigation Ribbon

One of the most unique layout changes has to be the improved, customizable navigation ribbon.  The new naviation shows up on the left hand side and allows users to move apps up and down based on their personal preference:

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This is a nice improvement, and something that Facebook is currently lacking.

Hangouts Page

With the new layout, Hangouts are becoming a bit easier to manage.  Instead of working directly into the stream, a set page will be implemented:

This page will include updated Hangout invitations, quick access to public hangouts and popular hangouts that are displayed via a large billboard.

These Google+ changes are being rolled out “over the next few days” so keep an eye out for the new-look Google+ soon!  For more information see the official Google blog post.

Related Topics: Channel: Social Media Marketing | Google | Google: Google+ | Top News


About The Author: is the Director of Marketing for Cypress North, a company that specializes in social media and search marketing services and web-based application development. He has been in the Internet marketing industry for 6+ years and specializes in Social Media Marketing. You can also find Greg on Twitter (@gregfinn) or LinkedIn.

Connect with the author via: Email | Twitter | Google+ | LinkedIn

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  • Donna Merrill

    Thank you for explaining this well.  It will take me a little time, but I’ll get used to it. Yes! It is more intuitive and that is exactly how I like to work. 

  • Michael Currey

    are there specs on the size of the horizontal “banner” image?

  • Rick Noel, eBiz ROI, Inc.

    Nice overview Greg. I got to say, the Google+ update took me a bit by surprise. I guess the idea of giving users some warning and time to transition makes the Facebook timeline roll out look  generous by comparison, even with Facebook users threatening to close out their accounts (assuming they had the patience to figure out how ;-)

    I do like the new Google+ changes so far, especially giving more prominence to content. Some  Google+ updates seem to be there primarily to position against the relatively new Facebook timeline. It will be interesting to see how Google+ users react and if/how this accelerates Google+ adoption, not only by Internet marketers, musicians, scientists, photographers and artists, but general users akin to the stereotypically long-time Facebook users who Google is not doubt chasing with this update.

    Thanks for sharing.

  • Michael Currey

    i’ve been driven crazy trying to figure out what the actual dimensions are for the banner/cover photo! earlier today i was sure it was 940px wide, now i’m seeing it as 900px wide :( i’ve even heard one guy say it’s 960px wide!
    is it possible the layout changes slightly? i’ve tried firefox, safari and chrome on my mac (no pc) and i can’t figure out why it would have changed… 
    why couldn’t facebook just publish the specs for their new design when they announced the new layout? 
    i wrote a blog post and everything and had to go back and edit it. now i’m afraid i’ll have to do the same tomorrow!

  • Michael Currey

    mystery solved. i tried uploading an image that was 900px wide to see what would happen and it was instantly rejected. the error message informed me that banners need to be 940×180. 
    it’s weird that the entire image doesn’t show (getting cut off on the right side) but i guess there’s a reason. or maybe it’s just me and my browser?

  • Shawn Startup

    Why I am NOT seeing this yet?

  • Brosix

    I like the new layout, but I think it will take me a while to get used to.

  • Mark Constantine

     This site has a list of apps you can use to make your google plus profile picture and banner including the Picture Image Avatar And Banner Maker

  • Maria

     Although you can upload images of any size for the banner, you can actually add animated images if you follow the exact size trick –

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