The Nearby tab on Facebook’s iOS and Android apps will still show your friends’ local activity, but it now also has the capability to offer search and discovery of all local businesses in the immediate area. With that addition, it puts a new face on Facebook’s largely untapped local efforts. It also puts Facebook in more direct competition with the likes of Yelp, Foursquare and even Google+.
The kicker for local businesses: If they don’t have a Facebook page with a location specified, they won’t be showing in the Facebook Nearby search results.
Facebook recently announced that there are more than 13 million Facebook Pages, though that includes non-business categories like Community pages. Recent reports have suggested that as many as 70 percent of Facebook Pages are inactive — something that Facebook would obviously to change.
For more on how the new Nearby works, see Greg Sterling’s article on our sister site, Search Engine Land: Facebook Gets Into Local Search With “Facebook Nearby” For iOS & Android.