Facebook Introduces “Graph Search”, Which Social Media Companies Will Win And Lose If It’s A Success:
Today, Mark Zuckerberg the CEO of Facebook announced a new product called “Graph Search” which combines social media with search engine technology. “Graph Search” is a revolutionary feature that may cause disruptive change to search. The new feature from Facebook will allow users to search Facebook for topics, pictures, trends, likes, pages, videos, pictures and more powered by Microsoft Bing.
If a search on Facebook doesn’t work, a user gets to query the internet using Bing which Facebook announced a partnership with today. Facebook search will have an impact on more than social media and “Graph Search” on search engine marketing (SEM) and search engine optimization (SEO). It’s too soon to see the magnitude but it’s possible Facebook has just become ‘the largest site in the world” -(that’s right ,…..it may have happened today).
Keep in mind, to some degree, Google already does what Facebook is looking to do by integrating Google+ results into every search so the business model is proven. The problem with Google using its social media assets as part of its algorithm is that it leads to less robust search results and we believe this leads to lower CPCs advertisers are willing to pay since organic and paid search results are complements.
Facebook won’t have this problem because people have opted into their network and they have tons of information abut users a regular search engine like Google could never obtain. Social media search and mobile when it’s integrated properly we believe help, LinkedIn, Twitter and others in and around the space.
Here is a brief list of winners and losers if Facebook’s “Graph Search” is a success.
- Foursquare – Loser: Local search results could be filtered by friends which could harm check-ins.
- Yelp – Loser Or Winner: Market overreacted today. Review sites are a big part of why people ‘act’. Unless Facebook directly challenges Yelp – they should be okay.
- Twitter – Loser: Trending topics could be usurped by Facebook
- Bing – Winner: Finally a social media asset that can offer positive network spillover effects for itss search engine.
- Google – Loser: Less robust social results with social media networks added? – Facebook just took that over but when users opt-in as friends, the results are more meaningful. Social search is basically the same as external search considering Google+ continues to add it’s own assets in organic results – even if the result is inferior.
There are lots of companies that were ignored in this analysis but these are the major sites that should be impacted by “Graph Search”. LinkedIn and other social media sites will invariably implement similar technology but Facebook’s lead with over 1 billion members makes its direct challenge to Google – ‘formidable’.