|Google's +1 button|
You may have already noticed these public stamps of approval peppering your Google search results. Some websites, including industry leader Mashable, have incorporated Google's +1 button onto its stories.
Connected to your personal Google profile, if you +1 a story on Mashable, this information that you gave the story your approval will appear next to the story's link in search results when your contacts look for it online. Watch Google's simple explanatory video below for an illustrated example of how this works.
Any web publisher can add the Google +1 button to their website. Still very new, the +1 button's importance in terms of SEO and ranking in Google search results is yet to be seen, but preference indicators as a part of social search is here to stay.
In the first announcement of this new feature, Google's Google’s David Byttow said:
“We’ll also start to look at +1’s as one of the many signals we use to determine a page’s relevance and ranking, including social signals from other services. For +1′s, as with any new ranking signal, we’ll be starting carefully and learning how those signals affect search quality over time.”
Visit Google's customization page to get started adding the Google +1 virtual "thumbs up" tool to content on your website.