Graph Search Is Not Web Search

Written by 5ivecanons Staff

Here is what you need to know about the future of Facebook’s new Graph Search: it is an interest-based search within your social network.

The new social graph search will allow users to find people, products, companies, etc. that they might be interested in based on their social network. This is not a search engine similar to Google, Bing, or Yahoo. “Graph search is not web search,” Mark Zuckerberg claims.

The new search engine focuses on privacy awareness. Users can only search for information that has already been shared from their friends on Facebook. Although there have been bugs with plugins, they have been resolved.

It’s about graphing our part of the web.

A Facebook user can search for friends within a specific geographic area. Here’s an example, you live in New York and are interested in which of your friends like to play football. Once you connect with those friends, you can start a group and meet friends of friends who are also interested.

The effectiveness of Facebook’s new Graph Search relies heavily on how much information users are willing to share. Users aren’t likely to share what doctor they visit, or where they go to get a flat tire repaired. However, Facebook already offers a real-time solution with status posts.

Facebook’s press release claims this version of Graph Search mainly focuses on people, places, and interests. However, Zuckerberg says the future of Graph Search will eventually include Facebook’s mobile applications, all languages, and Open Graph.

So Where is Graph Search?

Many people are asking how to gain access to the Graph Search. You cannot simply search for it on Facebook. It is available now in a very limited beta program for English (US) audiences only. Facebook has created a wait list that you can join directly on its website.

Stock Effect

After the announcement, critics claim it did not meet the expectations of shareholders. However, it is a step in the right direction. This is the first big announcement since the IPO of Facebook.

Some experts believe the new Graph Search has the ability to fill a void in advertising on Facebook. User-specific advertising could target people that search for certain food types or events. This would make Facebook’s sponsored advertisements more effective and worth the investment.

However, other experts believe the Graph Search will have to go mobile in order to take off. Using geo location tagging, a user could be alerted of a restaurant that many of their friends like as they walk by it. If Facebook could capitalize on ad revenue from a Mobile Graph Search, you could see its stock climb.

Facebook’s stock has been fairly stable at around $30 per share since the announcement on January 15th. However, the price per share did fall from $31.50 to just under $30 after the announcement. Facebook representatives are not clearly defining what the social graph can achieve, which could have partially caused the downturn in stock.