What is Facebook Graph Search? How is it Useful than a Google Search?


I was expecting Facebook to get into search directly competing Google, but Facebook has started out in a small way by introducing Facebook Graph Search. What is Facebook Graph Search? You can search on Facebook by entering in plain English concepts that tie together multiple things like the people who use it, where they live, what they’ve liked, their check-in places, pages they’ve liked, where they work, photos taken etc. So combining all these data from more than 900 million Facebook users, the search will operate.

Few days back at the Facebook Press event, they’ve announced the Facebook Graph Search which is currently in beta and rolling out slowly to everyone. Only a small amount of people will get the feature immediately, others can apply to be in the waiting list. You need to visit Facebook.com/graphsearch to get into the waiting list.

How it differs from a simple Google search? As said in the above paragraph, the Facebook graph search allows you to search by entering simple English like Photos of my friends in New York , people who like cycling and are from my home town, tourist attractions in France visited by my friends, movies liked by friends who are into movie making, restaurants in Germany my friends have been to, music my friends like and more.

facebook graph search (1)

Basically on a search, the trust factor works more. You believe about a product, a place or an incident only when it is said by a trusted person. When you compare Google search results and Facebook Graph search results, you will more likely to choose the options from Facebook search. Because, your friends have been to the place, they have used the product already so the trust factor is automatically formed here.

Google plus also wants to make it similar, when your friends +1 articles on web, you get personalized results based on it. It is somewhat relating to the trust factor. More than a web search, it has become a social search. Facebook graph search will not show results like Google style links to external sites. They’re Facebook pages, places, likes and other things that match the query.

facebook graph search (2)

What I’ve said above is not the exact thing, but it’s the overall idea of Facebook. Currently, the beta Facebook graph search helps you find people, photos, interests and places. As months go by, the product will steadily improve and lot of features we can expect.

What if the Facebook graph search fetches no results? Then it will show the standard page of web results powered by Bing. At the initial moment, the Facebook graph search is controversial on its privacy factor. But all privacy settings are respected and it will be fascinating to see how that changes the way people use the service and get benefited.

For me, I use Facebook to share and not for things to hide. So I’m not worried about privacy settings at all. If you ask me whether it will take over Google search? No way! But only when millions of people get their hands on it and find it useful, you can see a small change in web search.

These are my personal thoughts and what do you think about Facebook graph search? Share your thoughts with me through comments section.

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  1. Ram Shengale says:

    Hey Srivathsan,

    Nice post on facebook graph search. I don’t think it will have any major impact on Google’s search engine as it does not give real time results. It shows only the results from people, pages or groups you are connected to.


  2. Sunil says:

    This fb graph search is a new evolution is social media world and it is going to blow away all other social networking sites for sure. Awesome post dude!

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