For a couple of years at least, Buffer fans have been clamoring for the social media service to integrate with Google+. Why can’t we schedule posts to our Google+ Pages?, they asked. The answer was because Google had not released a Google+ write API yet.
Now finally, Google has released its Google+ Domains API, which allows clients to write to Google+ Pages. Buffer is possibly the first third-party client to integrate the Google+ Domains API for public use. At launch, Google mentioned two other partners who are putting the API to use, but these companies (CloudLock and Ocado) are doing so with proprietary solutions, whereas Buffer is a service that anybody can use.
To clear up any confusion, Google did previously (and still does) offer a Google+ API. However, that API only allows you to fetch posts and activities for read-only access. It does not allow you to programmatically post via the API.
Another bit of confusion was that Buffer competitor Hootsuite announced Google+ Pages integration back in November 2011. Apparently Hootsuite got in as part of an early pilot program, a move that left Buffer out in the cold.
That's about the time that Buffer users began asking for the same functionality.
“It is high up on our list and we are just waiting for Google [to] release their write API for us. We have already gone ahead and built this out partly, [and] hope Google+ gets onto this soon!,” Buffer spokesperson Leo Widrich posted in a company forum a year and a half ago.
And finally Google has risen to the cause. Buffer lets you schedule posts to social streams such as Twitter, Facebook, LinkedIn and App.net. Now, thanks to the long awaited Google+ Domains API, Buffer has pulled Google+ Pages into the loop. Buffer also offers analytics so you can see how many clicks, retweets, mentions, shares, likes and more you receive throughout the day.
The move may be a good one for Buffer, as companies can now integrate the Buffer API into backend tools and take advantage of the communication and collaboration features offered by Google+.
Buffer’s Google+ integration is still in the early access stage. The company says the officially announcement won’t be until next week.