According to a TechCrunch report, Facebook seems to be testing a new in-app search engine with a select group of test users. The purpose behind the new Facebook search engine is to allow for new content discovery in conjunction with status updates. Something that Google should be on the lookout for in this Facebook endeavor is the fact that this new in-app search engine does not require access to Google’s index. That’s right! Facebook’s new in-app search engine operates on the capability of crawling the web without the need of accessing Google’s data. Yet having the ability to return relevant content in a status update for an end user at an instant.

How Does the New In-App Search Engine Work?

Facebook’s new in-app search engine remains in beta testing but only a matter of time before it sees the light of day. From a functionality perspective, it is led to believe that this will be an extension for status updates. During the composition process of a status update a user will have the option to ‘add a link’.

Facebook status update
Facebook status update

Clicking on the new ‘add a link’ option will allow you to search for relevant links supportive of your status update. The search feature will function in the same fashion as traditional search using keyword triggers that pertain to your specific interest. When you’ve located a supportive link you will be able to append it to your status update. The coolest part about Facebook’s new in-app search engine will be the fact that all of this will occur through its native app.

The crawling functionality specifically operates on the methodology of perusing through over a trillion posts previously posted on Facebook. Based on its discoveries Facebook’s new in-app search engine will return posts that contain the most amount of relevant links. By doing that it will allow you to append those accordingly within individual status updates.

Google’s Dilemma on Facebook’s New In-App Search Engine

Certain speculations indicate that Facebook’s new in-app search engine may in fact derail Google U.S. search queries. Something that i’m certain Google will take strong notice of when consumer behavior in search fluctuates. In recency, Facebook has even eliminated the need for users to venture outside of its platform when seeking content by disallowing access to other search engines. The elimination of content access from search engines such as Google may in fact hurt the search giant’s U.S. search queries. However, it’s a bit early to speculate on this but definitely something to watch out for in the coming months.

What Does Facebook’s In-App Search Engine Mean for Brands?

It is quite evident that Facebook is not hesitating to step into the search market. Especially when heading up against search giants like Google, Bing, and Yahoo to develop their own internal search engine. Why not, right? Facebook already boasts over 1.5 billion users so why not maximize potential right at home. Imagine each one of those users engaging in at least one search query on daily basis. That represents a ton of untapped potential to capture for brands. It leads me to believe that Facebook search rankings will be the thing of the future and something brands need to take into strong consideration.

How will brands be able to utilize the new Facebook in-app search engine more effectively?

  • Remember, post engaging content that resonates with your target audience. It will become searchable in the near future and ultimately allow for stronger user engagement opportunities. More visibility equates to more traffic potential into your Facebook business page.
  • Include relevant links within status updates that support your overall message. These links will provide valuable link juice potential once the new Facebook in-app search engine launches publicly.
  • Incorporate supportive imagery within individual status updates. An image is worth a 1,000 words and the same applies on Facebook. Chances are these images will become indexable and ultimately allow for additional traffic boost to your Facebook business page.

Is the Facebook in-app search engine development endeavor a rumor? Definitely not. At least not at this point in the game. Facebook has strongly emphasized their deep interest in the search game on several occasions. Now that search is even more eminent than ever before it presents a prime opportunity for Facebook to take full advantage of its gigantic user base.