Facebook has come out with a new page redesign which in my opinion, more and more simulated the web browsing experience moreso than just the social mapping experience. The only problem is, with Facebook constantly referring its users to Facebook fanpages and other controlled content within the walls of Facebook, the overall findability quotient resembles something more of a late 90’s AOL than a 2010 social media world changer.
That being said, what really garnished my attention this morning with the new Facebook design was not necessarily the browser aspect of its UI, but moreso the centering of the Facebook Search Box.
What makes the realignment of Facebook Search more and more intriguing to me is that expanded search assists Facebook with multiple goals :
- Facebook is a search partner of Microsoft Bing, so the more Facebook searches equals more Bing searches, a revenue generator for both Facebook and Microsoft, which owns equity in Facebook. So even if Facebook does send people off of their platform, they at least do so via Bing.
- Facebook will have more search data on its users, to add to its lifestyle and behavioral data for ad targeting
- Facebook users will search more often for their friends, making connections and tagging connections, assisting Facebook with further knowing more about its members, and incentivizing its members to give Facebook more personal data
- Facebook searches on product or service oriented keyterms default on the relevant Facebook pages and events for those terms, further connecting users with fanpages and companies and making its interface more valuable for marketers
- In the same way that Google has spread worldwide with its simple cross cultural search box, Facebook and its investors, which include Microsoft and its other big investor, Digital Sky Technologies of Russia which runs the incredibly popular Russian social networks of vKontakte (Facebook Russia) & Odnoklassniki (Classmates).