In the middle of April I noticed, that I suddenly started to get a lot of more new followers in Google+ than before: hundreds of new followers daily, when it used to be only tens. By the end of May the rush was over: in 1,5 months I had got about 11 000 new followers.

Photo 1. Google+ follower history of Tiina Niskanen on CircleCount on 30.6.2013

2013-06-30 CircleCount, TN, followers

Suggested user list

My question was and partly still is: what happened? I can mainly speculate the reasons to the sudden increase in my follower count, but it must have been something Google did, not me. During the upswing I didn’t change my online behaviour in any way.

I found some posts and comments in Google+ that pondered about changes in the “suggested user list” (SUL) and the algorithms behind it. It was also mentioned, that Google regards these things as trade secrets and is not discussing them in public.


At the moment I’m the 7th followed person in Finland in Google+ according to CircleCount – 3rd followed woman. Not all Google+ users are listed in the service, though. Also, I’d be 4th on the women’s list, if not one user had told Google+ her gender is “other”.  It’s easier to get to the Top 10 in a small country like Finland: in USA I would be first 1200. on the joint list and 376. on the women’s list.

I’m sure the situation will change soon – that’s why I wanted to document this now :)

Photo 2. Google+ ranking of Tiina Niskanen on CircleCount on 30.6.2013

2013-06-30 CircleCount, Tiina Niskanen

Edit 1: Photo 2 and related links added.
Edit 2: Subheadings added.



CircleCount: Follower map of Tiina Niskanen (Google+ post 29.4.2013)
CircleCount: Profile of Tiina Niskanen
Google+: Tiina Niskanen
Google+: Post 19.4.2013 by Tiina Niskanen
Google+: Post 16.4.2013 by Tiina Niskanen
On Second Thought: How Did I Get 3 Google+ Pages In Finnish Top 10?
SlideShare: Career Services and Social Media by Tiina Niskanen 4.6.2013 (slide 17)
Wojdylo Finance: Living with the New Google+ Suggested User List by Eli Fennell 17.4.2013


Edit 23.7.2013: Statistics on Google url shortener