Facebook Graph Search: Good for Consumers and Businesses, Inconclusive for Investors

Facebook yesterday announced the introduction of Graph Search, an enhancement to its internal search engine, and is being widely criticized for holding a major press conference over a what many believe to be an overhyped new feature.

The idea behind Graph Search is that Facebook is sitting on a massive repository of Social Data that needed to made more accessible through Search, and now it is. Is it much ado about nothing? Time will tell, but for now by far the easiest way to understand what Graph Search actually is is to watch Facebook’s official video:

 

If you’re a small business or a Facebook user, and you do not have Facebook stock, ignore the noise about how much Facebook is overselling the value of Graph Search. The message that Graph Search will not drive significant incremental ad revenue for Facebook because everyone will use Google instead, for the foreseeable future, is really only relevant to investors – so we’ll keep that can of worms closed for now.

For everyone else, Graph Search is good news. Facebook users get a handy new feature and this will make them more likely to spend time on Facebook – and possibility less likely to leave Facebook for a competing social network. This gives businesses one more reason to keep investing in building their Facebook presence. Additionally, there will be more advertising opportunities for local businesses, and some car dealers will want to take advantage.

I for one can imagine running a search query for “car dealers my friends like” were I in the market for a new car, and I suspect many other young consumers would feel the same way. At Digital Air Strike™, we are certainly looking forward to adding Graph Search ads – which will be much like the Yelp Conquest Ads that are popular with our dealers – to our Facebook advertising product portfolio.


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