In an email to Wired.com, Google confirmed that it will be using signal gained from its +1 button to affect its own search engine rankings. This is no surprise and not really news. We published almost the exact same statement from Google back on July 8 (“Google+ and Google Search Engine“). What is interesting in yesterday’s report is how shy Google continues to be about talking about its intentions for the +1 button.
As the Wired article points out, this shyness is perhaps understandable as Google faces increasing allegations of anti-trust and favoring its own products in its search engine results. However, it is understandable that Google would be very hungry to gain a strong foothold in the social signal marketplace, especially with rumors flying right and left that Facebook will enter the search market some time next year.