Facebook Inc. (NASDAQ:FB), searching for revenue stream on its Web site and in its mobile application, seems to now be following the lead of Google Inc. (NASDAQ:GOOG) by rolling out a new “Sponsored Results” portion to its search engine. Reportedly, the sponsored search item appears in the typeahead when a user on Facebook searches for an app, page or place. Advertisers are able to buy space in the search bar, in effect. – which is some way follows Google’s lead, though Google puts its sponsored results at the very top of its search results page.
In the early going, Facebook Inc. (NASDAQ:FB) has sold Sponsored Results to Zynga Inc. (NASDAQ:ZNGA) and to dating Web site Match.com. In the search bar on Facebook, a user can type in a place, page or app and the Sponsored Result will show p first, followed by the specific search result. The sponsored results will be general, such as some one looking up a specific game app will likely find a Zynga Texas Hold’ Em advertisement first, though the searched-for game is not that specific game, or even a product of Zynga Inc. (NASDAQ:ZNGA).
However, no fretting – users who use the search feature will have the option to hide the ad and state a reason for hiding the ad – not interested, misleading, offensive are some of the several options to choose.
As Sponsored Results in the typeahead bar doesn’t have the relative permanence of similar sponsored results on Google Inc. (NASDAQ:GOOG) Search Results, there will likely be some skepticism as to whether this will really produce the revenue Facebook Inc. (NASDAQ:FB) would likely require. It’s probably a small piece to a bigger puzzle, which hasn’t been fully revealed yet. But there are some hedge-fund managers who will be very interested in the revenue success of Facebook Inc. (NASDAQ:FB), including Chase Coleman of Tiger Global Management.