Steve Rubel makes quite a bold statement in his AdAge column this week, prophetizing that “Facebook Will Rule the Web During the Next Decade“. The history of the web shows one thing: closed systems never win. And if Facebook opens up, will it still be Facebook?
I do agree however with the last statement of this op-ed which is actually the most important trend to reflect upon:
“Websites will become less important over time. They will be primarily transactional and/or utilitarian. Brands will shift more of their dollars and resources to creating a robust presence where people already are and figure out how to use them to build relationships”.
That’s true and already happening: websites are no longer the destination, the end point of one-way street, but the gateway, the hub to a larger brand ecosystem. Websites are not going away, but will merely serve as the anchor of the brand ecosystem.
As for the stats regarding Faceboog inching ahead of Google, that’s highly questionable (let alone the fact that HitWise’s metrics are heavily US-centric). Ahead of Google.com perhaps, but ahead of all Google’s properties combined (Youtube, GMail, Google Docs, etc.), that’s ludicrous. So yes, Facebook might be ahead of Google.com, but it’s certainly not going to displace the Google ecosystem as a whole any time soon. The future of the web, is …the web, and Google is becoming everyday more synonymous with the web, in all its ramifications.