Things have just gotten interesting on Facebook, especially for small businesses. Facebook rolled out a newly updated “Nearby” tab within the Android and iOS mobile apps.

Facebook updates Nearby tab.

Prior to the new update, Nearby showed users the last place their Facebook friend had checked in.

The newly updated Nearby tab will double as a local search tool. You will be able to find places and local businesses according to name and category. Users will be able to like, recommend, rate and check-in. Nearby will function very similar to Foursquare and Yelp.

How can small businesses benefit from Nearby? 

If your business has a physical location and you have not created a page yet, perhaps now is the time. With 600 million mobile users, Nearby gives businesses an opportunity to attract new customers.

For those of you that have an existing page be sure to head over to the ‘edit page’ tab and ‘update info.’ Double-check what category your company is currently listed within the ‘Basic information’ tab. Make sure your location and hours of operation are updated as well. If your business does not have a physical location, then the update isn’t much of a factor.

REMEMBER!  Since this a mobile update this is a great place for a business to add a little energy to a stagnant business page. Get together with your social media manager and work on a strategy to influence smartphone users to like your pages, give it a five-star rating, check your location, and recommend your business to their friends.

Has your business seen an increase in reviews or check-ins since the update? Leave a comment below!