Looking at search
Back in February when Facebook announced their IPO Mark Zuckerberg posted a picture of his desk, adorned with a large reminder to stay focused. The attention of many users drifted, however, to the Facebook screen on Zuckerberg's desk that seemed to have a much larger search box than the production version did. This week a Business Week article increased the buzz about an upcoming Facebook move into search.
Facebook would not comment because of the IPO quiet time restriction and nobody is predicting that Facebook's oft maligned search functionality will threaten Google any time soon. The blog All Facebook described a plan where Facebook could offer a strong social based alternative to Google's comprehensive spider, perhaps eliminating one reason to ever leave Facebook. Search Engine Land pointed out that Facebook's current search function encourages relatively few queries and that improved functionality could mean significant PPC revenue for the soon to be public company.
PPC revenue is still essential to Google's profits. Social Fresh made the case that Facebook search could help social users and hurt Google. WebProNews looked at a future in search that is more diversified, where specialists (such as Facebook for social search) could lead consumers away from a knee jerk reaction towards Bing or Google for almost all of their search needs.