Facebook Search Tips

Tweak your wording and filter search results

Millions of photos, videos, people, apps, pages, groups, events, and more make up Facebook. Knowing how to search through the site can make finding specific items a lot easier.

Previously called Graph Search, Facebook provides a search bar at the top of the website to find people, groups, or things using keywords and phrases. It lets you filter the results to refine them down to just the handful that's most relevant to you.

The best thing about Facebook's search bar is that it's very straightforward: Not only are the results easy to understand, but you also can let Facebook complete the search for you. If you're not sure how to find something, start typing exactly what you want, and you'll see auto-suggested words and phrases. This search bar is geared toward natural-language searches, so an ordinarily phrased search is likely to bring you the results you want. You can search images on Facebook, too.

Find Facebook Posts by Keyword

Screenshot showing how to find posts by keyword on a Facebook friend's profile

Scrolling through someone's page to find a Facebook post they published yesterday, or even a few hours ago, can prove quite the task if this person is a heavy user. Facebook lets you search for specific words and phrases, whether posted today or years ago.

You might use this type of Facebook search to find posts by a certain friend or to see what the public is saying about a specific topic.

  1. Type a word or group of words into the search bar.
  2. Click Posts at the top of Facebook to refine the search away from videos, apps, photos, etc.
  3. Pick a Facebook friend from the POSTS FROM section or click Your Friends and Groups. Click Anyone to see public posts.

You can also sort the results by Top Posts or Most Recent, as well as show only posts you've already seen, posts in a certain Group, posts tagged from a particular location, and posts made on a specific date.

Locate a Stranger You Just Met

Screenshot showing how to search for people on Facebook

Say you met someone over the weekend in Kansas City, and all you know is that his name is Matt. Instead of looking through all of Facebook for someone with that name or browsing through Kansas City groups to spot him, you can combine two search filters to vastly narrow down the results.

  1. Type the name in Facebook's search bar.
  2.  Choose People as the filter.
  3. Under CITY, click Choose a City and type the relevant city name.
  4. Under MUTUAL FRIENDS on the left side of Facebook, click Anyone to avoid looking for this person in your existing friends list.

If you know this person attends a specific college or workplace or has a mutual friend, it's even easier to find him. Find the job or school under WORK or EDUCATION, or pick the mutual friend from the MUTUAL FRIENDS area.

Search for Nearby Restaurants Your Friends Like

Screenshot Showing Nearby Restaurants Liked by Facebook Friends

Facebook has a secret restaurant search tool that you can access only after searching for Restaurant from the search bar. You can even show restaurants your friends have "liked" on Facebook.

  1. Enter restaurants nearby in the search bar.
  2. Click Places at the top of Facebook.
  3. Click Visited by Friends in the left menu.

You can filter the results even more by picking a cuisine such as pizza, Chinese, vegetarian, etc. There's also an Open Now filter, price picker, and a filter for takeout, reservations, etc.

A similar way to complete the search is to type something like pizza into the search bar, and then pick the Friends filter to show pizza places liked by your friends.

All the restaurants shown have been liked by at least one of your Facebook friends. If you open the company's Facebook page, you can see which friends liked it from the Community section.

Tip: This search works for all types of businesses; just type the name — like bank, escape room, etc. — to see those results.

See Upcoming Events Your Friends Are Attending

Screenshot showing how to see events your friends are going to on Facebook

If you have Facebook friends who say they're "interested" in events on Facebook, finding those events is easy with the Events filter.

  1. Type an event name or keyword into the search bar. For example, Music is a good one for musicals or anything music-related. If you know the exact name, you can type that instead, like Music on Main!
  2. Click Events above the results.
  3. Click Popular with Friends on the left side.

You can filter the results by location and date, too, if there are too many results to sift through.

Find Items for Sale

In the search bar, search for words such as salediscount, or free to bring up items in Facebook Marketplace. For example, if you're looking for a used dining room table, you might enter the search phrase dining room table for sale.