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Facebook's Page Browser

Posted on 9.27.2010

Facebook has an interesting feature that you might not know about - recommended page subscriptions, or the Facebook Page Browser.

Essentially, its a page of Facebook Pages that are recommended to you based on your Facebook site activity. It's a continuously scrolling page that, by clicking once, subsribes you ('likes') to that page and all its future updates. It also broadcasts that you "like" the page to all of your friends. It's a simple thing, really, but with powerful possibilities.

As it stands, the reason this could be so monumental is that these are not advertisements nor are they presented that way. Unlike the standard Facebook ads that you see on your Facebook home page, these are personalized recommendations. So, the barrier to a click is dramatically smaller than when clicking a sponsored ad. Also, the one-click subscription is intriguing. This makes it very easy to subscribe to a page, although I could see a double opt-in requirement sooner than later.

For now, the Page Browser feature is not accessible from your home page - the only place I have found a link is on my own profile, under the 'Info' tab and listed under 'Likes and Interests' with a link that reads 'Discover more Pages.' That will likely change soon. What I'm most interested in is whether this will become a revenue generator for Facebook and an advertising option for businesses. Twitter rolled out sponsored tweets and trends and claims to have had success with them. They are also rumored to be working on even more advertising options. Surely, this is not lost on Facebook.

From a content discovery point of view, this is also interesting as it presents yet another alternative to standard search. These are lightly personalized recommendations (although I suspect that, over time, they will become increasingly personal) that make it very easy to discover content before you even have a chance to search for it.

Check out Facebook's Page Browser.

Listen to a recent Website Magazine Radio podcast about users' shift away from search.

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