How many Google+ users are there?

One of the most lively discussion around the web might be exactly How many Google+ [plus] users are there till now?well ,  lots of online analysis, articles might be bidding around web some says it 18 million , 20 , 25 and some critics says it’s hype.Like a normal enquirer we did some sort of research on finding the answer for total number of Google+ Profile users.We tried some common Google search query tricks like site: inurl: queries but as most suggests it provide different  and inaccurate  count  [URLs indexed ] search results from Google [totally depends on Google named location servers] .So we jumped into a conclusion from Google+ sitemap.xml.Amazingly we got a results of Total Indexed Google Profiles, Indexed inactive Google profiles [not using Google+, just using mail and other Google products] and finally Indexed Google+ Profiles.And the result for active Google+ users are around 20 million [Updated to 21 Million as on Sep 22] till now , and yes, Google+ is growing faster.

First of all our accuracy and method of finding Google+ users can be questioned , but as a proof we provide that our results exactly matched as provided by analysis results  from other websites .
Our results as on Sep 19 2011 [Updated Results Given Below]

  •  Total there are 74750000 [seventy-four million] indexed Google profiles
  •  Among  74750000 indexed Google profiles  there are 20930000  [twenty million] Google[+]  plus profiles and   53820000 [fifty-three million] inactive Google profiles [not active Google+ users]

How we did the process of above calculation?

The research began with the Robot.txt file of plus.google.com the official Google+ URL [Robots.txt is a text (not html) file you put on your site to tell search robots which pages you would like them not to visit].
First begin with robot.txt file of plus.google.com , Type in  Browser URL bar https://plus.google.com/robots.txt will return following result
User-agent: *
Disallow: /_/
Sitemap: http://www.gstatic.com/s2/sitemaps/profiles-sitemap.xml

Here as most of  you know  a Sitemap is an XML file that lists the URLs for a site.so next we have to find out what is in profiles-sitemap.xml of Google Plus.

So Now type http://www.gstatic.com/s2/sitemaps/profiles-sitemap.xml in Chrome browser URL bar .It will take some time to render since it’s a long content file.

Now upon rendering Google+ sitemap file it displays some “.txt” files [for eg:http://www.gstatic.com/s2/sitemaps/sitemap-00012752.txt], which exactly contains the URL’s  of Google Profile that is been indexed by Google.Look into below image

Now just  search in this file [from Google chrome browser, since it shows count  – mostly Firefox doesn’t shows the count of searched text ] press CTR + F and type in search box  .txt or http , which returns 14950 results.That means there are exactly 14950  .txt  files where in each of these files contains the number of  Google Profile URL’s.


Now copy any of those .txt URL’s file and paste in the browser.It wll display a lots of Google Profile URL’s like  https://profiles.google.com/ , also some are https://plus.google.com/ .And in each  .txt URL’s file  there are exactly 5000 URL’s given, to find just press CTR + F and type in search box  https , it will  return the count as 5000.

That means Total Google Profiles =  14950  .txt  files * 5000 google Profile URL’s = 74750000 indexed Google profiles [seventy-four million  ] .                                                                                  
Here one thing to  note that in each  .txt URL’s file profiles.google.com are in  google profiles[i.e they are not yet using Google+] and plus.google.com are  Google+ profiles.


Now the most tedious tasks come to find out to find exactly what number of active  Google+ profiles and inactive Google+  Profiles are there.
Do a rough check that in each ,.txt URL or sitemap.txt there are around 3600 [avg] https://profiles
To find it just type any of the .txt URL for eg:http://www.gstatic.com/s2/sitemaps/sitemap-00012752.txt in the URL bar and just press CTR + F and type in search box   https://profiles , it will return a count around 3600 [check any of those .txt URL, you will get a count of profiles exactly around 3600].

Since in each In each sitemap.txt there are around 3600 [avg] https://profiles = 3600*14950 =53820000 indexed inactive Google+ profiles  or simply Google profiles without using G+ [fifty-three million]
Similarly  find the number of active Google+ Profiles   just type any of the .txt URL for eg:http://www.gstatic.com/s2/sitemaps/sitemap-00012752.txt in the URL bar and just press CTR + F and type in search box https://plus  , it will return a count around 1400 [check any of those .txt URL, you will get a count of profiles exactly around 1400]
Since in each sitemap.txt there are around [1400] [avg] https://plus = 1400*14950 =20930000 active indexed Google plus profiles [twenty million]
Now to check the result add up 53820000 inactive Google profiles+ 20930000 active  Google plus profiles =74750000  [seventy-four million  ] which is same as our above result .So in overall estimation there are 20930000 active  Google plus profiles and   53820000 inactive Google+ profiles.
To check these results just do a Google search in http://www.Google.com for site:https://profiles.google.com/ which returns 54200000   results that means almost similar to our calculation.
But in case of site:https://plus.google.com/  it’s 44300000 results which means the Google results are doubled with respect to exact site map calculation [might be Google plus URLs links within profiles are also indexed]
Also most research analysis around the web indicates there are around 20 million Google+ users are there, so our calculation of Twenty Million Nine Hundred Thirty Thousand shows exact matching results.

Updated Results as on Sep 22:
With in 4 days around 1 Million Google+ Profiles  were created.
Total there are 76187569  [seventy-six million] indexed Google profiles
Among  76187569  indexed Google profiles  there are 21332553  [twenty one million] Google[+]  plus profiles and   54855016 [fifty-three million] inactive Google+ profiles [not active Google+ users]
As our fiirst calcul;ation as on this post  was as on Sept 19 , but now since G+ is available open Public beta or no invitation required, The number of G+ profiles created are much faster .The  plus.google,com -sitemap.xml is been rapidly added with new profiles list, from Sept 19 to Sept 22 , around
1437569  additional profiles were added.If you check http://www.gstatic.com/s2/sitemaps/profiles-sitemap.xml now , there are  15238 .txt files in that sitemap.xml.And note that on the last .txt [15238 .txt] file there are only 2569 profles compared to 5000, since daily new profiles are added to the list it’s growing..So on below calculation we avoid the last .txt files[later added]
With new Profiles
15237 *5000 =76185000 + 2569 profiles on last .txt files = 76187569
=>1437569 profiles  added from sep 19 to sep 22
3600*15237 =54853200 inactive Google+ Profiles
1400*15237=21331800 active Google+ Profiles
Since  the last .txt file contain only 2569 profiles , where total Google+ profiles are 753 and Inactive G+ Profiles are 1816
So 54853200+1816=54855016 inactive G+ Profiles and 21331800 + 753 =
21332553 active Google+ Profiles

Note:This post is not intended to any harm for any Google+ analysis results, Try it yourself and if any error please comment

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Posted on September 22, 2011, in Google, Technews, Tips'n'Tricks. Bookmark the permalink. 8 Comments.

  1. how many of the 14950 files did you analyse to get the average of 3600 profiles, and is this true for google.com only, or is it valid for google.co.uk, .co.fr, .com.au etc….

    • +Andy of course It’s totally hard to analyze all those 14950 files manually , but as a rough estimate , it’s always showing around 3600 profiles [it’s almost an ordered list 3600 profiles.google.com vs 1400 plus.google.com] on any of those sitemap files, i.e why i mentioned accuracy can be questioned , however with an efficient sitemap analyzing code/tool , we could get a rough estimate, and in case of google.co.xx Vs google.com, as we know that google.com/sitemap.xml is expected to index [include] all those indexed profiles in the.txt file[as explained in post], also this conclusion does match with online analyses. of around 20 million active profiles for Google+

  2. OK, number of files (as of 17:09 BST) is now 14949, with 4114 lines, so number of profiles is going down?

    Also it strikes me that this is ONLY the un-indexed, or rather ones which google doesn’t want robots to index profiles. Possibly this is the non-public profiles?

    (looking at findpeopleonplus.com I get 16,062,724 Google+ users indexed, not sure how they do it as 1 – I haven’t submitted to there yet I am on there, 2 – a 2nd test profile isn’t on there).

    • Though, on second thoughts, can you even have a G+ profile which can’t be indexed?

      • i don’t think so , because whenever we create a plus profile , it’s always public [i.e indexed] , and if you have a private profile[i.e not using G+ -JUST USE FOR GMAIL AND OTHER] is in unindexed category..

    • “14949, with 4114 lines” , don’t want to care on 4114 lines , for unindexed in robot.txt check that it displays
      User-agent: *
      Disallow: /_/
      Sitemap: http://www.gstatic.com/s2/sitemaps/profiles-sitemap.xml , here Disallow: /_/ i-The Disallow lines define the rules the robots are supposed to follow – in this case what they shouldn’t crawl. here it’s root directory. and sitemap.xml is the official list of web URL’s
      Check any of those profiles URL in a .txt file of Google+ sitemap.xml , for eg: search https://plus.google.com/100267659650349371147 [whch is in .txt file ] , it’s displayed in Google results, so no doubt on indexed or not, all those URL’s in any of the .txt files are indexed as calculation there are around 20 million active Google+ users , and around 50million users who are inactive in G+

  3. Looks like I misread something somewhere then….
    BTW I now have a test G+ user who has a profile which ISN’T visible in search (does this mean not indexed?) does this mean that they wouldn’t show up in your figure?

    I’m slightly dubious as to your results – from what I can see you’ve slightly overestimated numbers of G+ users, from your results, if anything (3622 is about the lowest number I got for profile. in a txt file – most were in the high 3600s (I looked at about a dozen of these).

    So the sitemap tells crawlers which pages they MAY index, not which they MAY NOT, so these profiles are profiles which google says crawlers may index – those which are visible in search?…

    BTW there now seem to be 14950 files again. All of which say lastmod 2011-9-18, and no indication of change frequency..

    Another BTW, I think this is the best attempt to get at G+ numbers I have yet seen.

  4. I like your post very much it is different article

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