Here are all of the posts tagged ‘search’.
Facebook Graph Search
Facebook has launched a ‘social search’ function that allows its users to make more specific searches for the content and information that has been shared within their ‘social graph. The service does not index the social web in the way that Google does, but instead references the things that have been shared with each individual by their connections. Read more at The Next Web and the BBC.
New MySpace Opens to Public
The completely redesigned MySpace opened to the broader public a few hours ago, coinciding with the release of key partner Justin Timberlake’s new single. Read more at The Next Web and Mashable.
240 Billion Photos
Mark Zuckerberg announced that Facebook’s 1 billion users have shared more than 240 billion photos on the site to date, meaning users have shared an average of more than 73 million photos every day – or 849 photos every single second – since the site launched in February 2004. Read more at The Next Web.
China is Twitter’s most active country despite being blocked?
Recent GlobalWebIndex data indicated that there were 35.5 million monthly active Twitter users in China in the second quarter of 2012, while India was next in line with 33 million and the US in third with 22.9 million monthly active Twitter users. This is an interesting statistic as Twitter, like Facebook and Google, has been blocked in China for more than 3 years now. The Next Web was mystified by the numbers and has sought clarification from the data provider but has yet to get a response. Defining active users as those who have “used or contributed to the platform at least once a month”, GlobalWebIndex estimates that 124 million out of 262 million active Twitter users worldwide tweeted during the second quarter of 2012. In comparison, 400 million out of 653 million monthly active Facebook users posted on the service during the same period. In the same report, Twitter ranked 6th amongst global social platforms with an estimated reach of about 16% of the world’s online population. Twitter user data has been notoriously difficult to acquire much less verify so watch this space for future updates on how Twitter fares in China.
Top 9 uses of microblogs & social networking services in China
In a recent report, microblogs seem to be gradually gaining popularity in China with increasingly frequent usage focused heavily on news, videos and photos. By contrast, growth seems to be slowing down for social networking services in China, as usage has evolved to focus on obtaining dining information and video sharing. The bar charts below tabulate the frequency of usage for Sina Weibo and Renren, the 2 most dominant networks for microblogs and social networks respectively, for ease of comparison.
Youku Tudou dominate China’s online video market
The merger between Youku and Tudou in China has created an online video behemoth that could reach as many as 310 million weekly unique viewers and generate 1.6 billion hours of video monthly. The site’s immense potential as an advertising platform is not to be trifled with as the combined entity now reaches about 80% of China’s online population. In the first quarter of 2012, Youku accounted for 20.9% of revenue for China’s online video market with Tudou trailing at 11.5%. Both companies led the online video market in terms of reach and revenue. Competitor Sohu.com Inc garnered a 10.9% share of online video market revenue, while Baidu’s Qiyi had 6.7% and Tencent came in last with 4.7% market share.
Discounts less important for alcohol consumers on social media
eMarketer recently reported on the impact of social media engagement on alcohol consumption. 73% of regular wine drinkers in the US were Facebook users with the numbers heavily skewed towards Millennials, who were found to be more than 3 times as likely as the overall sample group to be influenced by blogs and social networking sites.
It was interesting to note that discounts were not a significant influencing factor in encouraging alcohol consumers to “Like” or follow alcoholic brands on social networks. This seems to reflect a loyalty on the part of consumers to the same alcohol brand even in the absence of a discount. The study found that 15% of social network users made their alcoholic beverage purchases due to content found on social networks.
Why Google Plus should not be ignored
Since its launch 15 months ago, Google+ has registered 250 million users and over 1 million brands (which includes more than half of the top 100 US brands). In spite of criticism that Google+ is a ghost town, it was found that users are on the site an average of 12 minutes per day, just 2 minutes under Facebook’s average of 14 minutes per day. As if the statistics are not impressive enough, consider the fact that the G+ social share button is used 5 billion times daily as a way for users to endorse content. This is significant as 71% of consumers are more likely to be influenced by reviews from family members or friends whilst 84% use online sources when researching purchase options. The G+ button does more than just enable users to endorse content, it also influences the search results of people in your Circle and what you see when conducting a Google search. With more than 1 billion searches daily, this could be Google+’s silver bullet in its battle against Facebook.
Number of LinkedIn users in India
Salesforce to purchase Buddy Media for more than $800 million
Enterprise cloud computing company Salesforce is close to a deal to acquire social enterprise software provider Buddy Media, best known for helping brands manage their Facebook presence, for more than US$800 million or S$1.02 billion. Buddy Media’s clients currently include well-known brands such as HP, Mattel, L’Oreal, and Virgin Mobile. There seems to be a spate of acquisitions lately, what with Salesforce’s rival Oracle having snapped up Vitrue for $300 million or S$386 million just last week. Similar to the services Buddy Media provides, Vitrue helps brands manage their social media presence through its CRM-like tools and dashboards.
LinkedIn is primary source of social media intelligence
Digimind‘s recent ‘State of Market Intelligence 2012′ survey reveals that 79.2% of market intelligence decision-makers monitor social media platforms to extract information related to their competitors, industry developments, consumer trends and more. 62.5% of companies surveyed monitor microblogging service Twitter while 69.4% monitor professional networking site LinkedIn as part of their day-to-day intelligence activities. Social networking sites Facebook and Google+ however are not as highly regarded as essential sources to monitor, with a lesser share of 47.2% and 35.2% of companies monitoring these two sites respectively. Even though companies see the benefits of social media intelligence, with 60.6% of respondents in the process of planning intelligence projects, 21% of companies surveyed are still not harnessing the benefits of social media as a source of valuable insight and intelligence.
More women use social media than men
A survey commissioned by BT of more than 2,000 British people revealed the differences between how men and women use the Internet. The study discovered that more than 50% of female Internet users used social networking platforms such as Twitter and Facebook, whilst only 34% of men surveyed admitted to doing so. In addition, 18% of women believed that they would miss social media websites most if the Internet were to cease exiting, whereas only 7% of men feel the same way. Most men said they would miss the ease of administration online such as web banking most. 13% of men surveyed were more likely to use content-sharing websites, such as Flickr, YouTube and Vimeo, compared to only 6% of women. The survey also revealed that while more women use the Internet for information-gathering and research, such as looking up shopping deals, more men use the Internet to supplement their learning and expand their knowledge.
Facebook’s loss of search engine referrals
Facebook analytics company PageLever has examined the impact ‘Search Plus Your World‘, which Google built to customise results to social networks, has had on traffic referrals to Facebook. Through analysing external referrals from Bing and Google across 500 Facebook pages, each with at least 10,000 likes, PageLever found that traffic referred from Google had dropped by 51% and that traffic referred from Bing had dropped by an even greater 59% year-on-year. Google led 9.25% of external traffic to Facebook pages before the launch of Search Plus Your World, which has since almost halved, leading 4.52% of external traffic to Facebook post-launch. The fall in traffic to Facebook pages from Google search could be due to the diversion of results to rival social network Google+, but this does not explain why Facebook is seeing falling referrals from Bing as well.
Social messaging disrupts SMS
This is a clear example of a disruption that has shaken a mammoth industry. According to technology analyst firm Ovum, mobile operators lost an estimated US$14 billion or S$17.54 billion in short message service (SMS) revenues in 2011, all thanks to the advent of social messaging, which took away 9% of SMS revenue. Social messaging refers to the likes of mobile messaging apps such as Whatsapp, Viber, Skype, but even iMessage on the iPhone and Blackberry Messenger (BBM) are threatening to replace SMS. Whatsapp reached a milestone in October 2011 when over 1 billion texts were sent in a single day. SMS may not become obsolete anytime soon, especially for mobile users holding on to feature phones, but we won’t be surprised if the number of SMSes sent declines year-on-year.
China’s mobile payments growth
Data from iResearch points out that mobile payments in China would have reached 48.14 billion yuan or S$9.61 billion by the end of 2011, which indicates an impressive 149.4% growth from the previous year. Mobile payments are expected to exceed 200 billion yuan or S$39.94 billion by the end of 2013. China has shown willingness to drive market adoption of Near Field Communication (NFC) technology, which would enable phones to become mobile wallets, so we would expect the target of 200 billion yuan to be hit given the 987.58 million mobile users in China as of January 2012.
Social network users in emerging markets
Social network users from emerging markets seem more likely to interact with brands on social networks. 31% of users from Brazil, 27% from India and 23% from China think that social networking sites are a good source of word-of-mouth information on brand experiences, as opposed to 18% from the US. Furthermore, 23% of users from Brazil, 22% from China and 21% from India would share brand information and experiences on online social networks the same way they would with friends and family in reality, compared to 11% of US users. It’ll be interesting to see how these sentiments change as social networking use continues its growth in Asia, such as with India taking over the number 2 spot from Indonesia as the second largest nation of Facebook users.
LinkedIn hits 1 million users in Indonesia
We’ve recently reported on LinkedIn’s growth in Asia, and now LinkedIn has reported surpassing 1 million registered members in Indonesia. The professional social network has seen more than 200,000 new registered members since introducing language support for Bahasa Indonesia. Its user base has increased by 25%, compared to to 5.5% Facebook has achieved in the same period. Interaction on the service has similarly increased, with the number of LinkedIn groups in Indonesia doubling to more than 700.
The battle between two Internet giants
Google briefly owned a 2% stake in Baidu for 2 years before selling it off in 2006 with the creation of Google.cn, which at the moment only accounts for 11.1% of China’s search query market share, while Baidu dominates 83.6%. Out of 64 billion search requests made in China, 53.5 billion are made on Baidu. This infographic by Digimind neatly sums up how both Internet giants are competing in China’s online search space.
There’s been plenty of coverage about the integration of Google+ into search over the past few days, but this particular iteration really caught our attention:
As you can see in the screen shot, the ‘ask a friend’ option sits at the bottom of the first page of Google’s search query results, just before the links to subsequent pages.
As such, it’s a great way to extend the brand’s meaning beyond what its existing algorithms can deliver – especially considering that 85% of users never look beyond the first page of search results.
Clicking on the ‘Ask on Google+’ link brings up a dialogue box directly on the search page that allows the user to post a question to their Google+ account:
The question is even pre-populated – the image above shows the text it chose for my original search query, which was “the future of social media”.
While ‘ask a friend’ is a fantastic addition in itself, it feels like an opportunity for Google to appease critics of the search / social integration; giving users the option to ask the same question to different networks – e.g. Twitter, Linkedin, Facebook – would make a lot of sense.
It would also allow Google to start mapping the kinds of content people feel are most appropriate for their different social networks – data which, in the long run, would allow them to optimise Google+ for different kinds of audience.
We’ll be keeping a close eye on how this on-going integration evolves over the coming weeks and months, but please feel free to share your own interesting discoveries and observations too – just give us a shout on Twitter if you see anything!