The recent unveiling of Facebook’s Graph Search didn’t seem to impress investors as the company’s stock tumbled down on the day of Mark Zuckerbeg’s announcement. But according to a new report from comScore, Facebook may have already started taking searches away from Google.
The report shows that, while the number of people performing searches increased by 4%, the number of searches done on search engines in the United States dropped by 3% in 2012. Essentially, more people are searching, but the average individual user is performing fewer searches.
The comScore report notes, “Consumers are increasingly likely to search for a product on Amazon or eBay, and search for people on Facebook or Whitepages.com.” vertical searches are up 8% year over year as well. The report also cites the shift to increased mobile device usage as a contributing factor.
Currently, Google accounts for two of every three searches done in the US; however, the report notes, “Facebook’s Graph Search, which incorporates users’ ‘likes’ into search results, will have enough similarities to Google’s social search elements that the two companies appear to be on something of a collision course in this nascent segment of the search market.”
As Facebook rolls out its Graph Search over the course of the year, analysts may see the social media giant take bigger chunks of the search market overall. By the end of 2012, Facebook had surpassed Google Maps as the #1 mobile app in the United States.
Google is still performing head and shoulders above other core search sites for the time being, and Bing is steadily growing its market share. With Google introducing its own social search features, and growing the social side of its business, the developments in 2013 should be interesting to watch.
Do you see Graph Search as being a major competitor to Google? Let us know in a comment.