Over the last several days, Snapchat has slowly rolled out the Snapchat Search feature to Android users. This is very interesting, as most Snapchat features come to iPhone users first. The search feature allows Snapchat users to search within the app. Note that this is not a search like Google Search. You cannot search for answers to homework questions or movie times.
You can search for:
- Friends – on quick add, friends list and contact list
- Discover Content
- Texts – Group text or private saved Snapchat texts
As many media outlets have already pointed out, this is just another monetization opportunity for Snapchat. There is a strong possibility that Snapchat will allow brands, companies, businesses and celebrities to pay to show up at the top of search when Snapchat users open the search function. If a user searches “football” it is obvious ESPN and Bleacher Report would want to show up at the top of the search results.
Over time, Snapchat will realize how people are using the search function. Will they use it like they use Google to ask homework questions or get movie showtimes? Will they use it like Facebook just to search for people and businesses? Will they dive deep into their old texts and look for specific keywords? These are all opportunities for advertisements.
Unfortunately, it does not look as if you can search for new people or celebrities. Pro tip – go to Add Friends and type in “official” and you can find new celebrities every day.
Having lived through the ICQ, AIM, Facebook, Twitter, Tinder and now Snapchat era, one thing is clear, people will always look for people their age on the Internet. Remember the A/S/L era on Yahoo! Chat? People are always willing to find those by asking for age/sex/location. Snapchat has to realize this and allow people to search for those of the same age or a specific age.
Do you think Snapchat will expand search to help users find people of the opposite sex? Does there need to be a way to discover or find celebrities and brands in which they don’t have to pay?