Facebook works on connections, and getting recommendations for businesses, like restaurants, seems like something the social network should have been doing for ages.
Of course, a user could have always simply posted a status update asking if a place they planned on going to was any good, or worth going to, and maybe even tagged a few friends and family members for good measure. But now Facebook wants to make it a bit easier to get recommendations for businesses and restaurants, essentially taking on Yelp at the same time.
To get it to work, there’s a new Recommendations feature that has to be turned on for it all to work. Facebook uses a combination of keyword recognition and AI to identify which posts are seeking recommendations. When the Recommendations feature is switched on, the business/restaurant’s Facebook page will be added to the thread, as well as a map that will show off the relevant information pertaining to the business.
“You can use it to get advice on beauty salons, home contractors, places to see or things to do as well. I saw a demo of someone looking to find a hair salon in San Francisco, and when her friends offered a few options, links to the salons’ Facebook Pages appear immediately under their suggestions. If there are multiple locations with the same name, you can edit the suggestion to pick out the correct one. If someone suggests a business that doesn’t have a Facebook Page the system still adds them to the map, according to their addresses. You can also go in and customize the map further, by adding and removing locations manually.”
What’s more, the inclusion of the Facebook page can mean that, as long as that business or restaurant offers it, the user can set up an appointment with the company, or schedule a reservation. The Recommendations feature will also collate a list of recommended businesses, so if a user just wants to sift through the results, that’s a possibility.
The new feature will be rolling out beginning today, so keep an eye out for it.