Facebook Graph Search: The Social Search

Wed 23 January 2013 10:00, Vitto Christaldi

Facebook Graph Search: The Social Search

Last week, Mark Zuckerberg introduced the latest Facebook feature which grabs a lot of media attention: Graph Search. This internal search function makes it possible for users to not only search for friends or pages, but also to look for friends’ particular activities in particular cities or timeline.

But what is the concept of Facebook Graph Search exactly? Let’s put it this way: Facebook has more than 1 billion users at the moment. These users are interconnected with other users (friends) and brands; where they share photos, interests (favorite movies, books, movies, websites), and locations (check-ins). These four entities (people, photos, interests, and locations) are the hearts of the Facebook Graph Search. 


The new service offers improvement in the means of searching. Before, Facebook users can only search for names or pages, but with the launch of the Graph Search, users can now question Facebook in a natural and intuitive way. Graph Search understands question with the combination of verbs (‘like’, ‘work’, ‘live’, ‘been’), nouns (‘friends’, ‘restaurants’, ‘music’, ‘movies’), and prepositions (‘in’, ‘at’, ‘before’, ‘with’). Example of questions that users can ask: “Friends who like Quentin Tarantino from the city I live in”, “Restaurants in Berlin that my friends have been to”, or “Photos of friends from before year 2000 who went to the same school”.


Social media platforms have evolved over the years and massive amounts of data have been stored by their users. These data, however, have hardly ever used. With the Facebook Graph Search, users now have a possibility to discover new things by consulting the past. As I quoted from the article Why the next social media frontier is past: "Content gets less valuable over time. And then it gets more valuable."

Users’ Privacy

Graph Search only shows content that is set “public” on Facebook; as the company stated: “We’ve built Graph Search from the start with privacy in mind, and it respects the privacy and audience of each piece of content on Facebook. It makes finding new things much easier, but you can only see what you could already view elsewhere on Facebook.” 

The SEO of Graph Search

As it was written by marketingfacts.nl, there are some details that companies must pay attention in order to optimally use the new Facebook Graph Search:

  • Name. Is your page name correct? No spelling mistake?
  • Page category. Check whether your page category fit your business. For example: you own an Indian restaurant, but on Facebook your restaurant page is registered as Korean restaurant.
  • URL. Has your Facebook page had a correct URL (facebook.com/brandname)?
  • Info/about. Fill it in correctly to make sure users can find your page quicker
  • Location. If your company have a physical location, then fill in the address correctly so users can find your business through “check-ins” history.
  • Fans. It is important to have a fans growth and to maintain users interaction.

The future of Graph Search

At the moment the Graph Search is only available for English-speaking users and still in beta. In the  near future, Facebook will unlock even more entities for its search, such as Facebook status updates.

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Comments (6)


  • It's really interesting. I've signed for the beta version...but I'm still waiting. I really zan't wait to see graph search released and find out what will be the benefits of it.

    Do 28 feb 2013, 12:46

    • Sander Matthew

    I've also signed up for the GraphSearch but I am still on waiting list. Any idea why they have not given the beta version to me yet?

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