This past year Google made headlines when it socialized search. Although not everyone was happy about the integration, it appears that Search Plus Your World is here to stay.

But Google isn’t the only company trying to merge the two. A team — led by a former Google programmer — of more than 20 Facebook engineers is working on a project aimed at improving the social network’s search engine.

Businessweek broke the news, citing two Facebook sources — who haven’t been named due to the company’s IPO-induced quiet period. The idea behind this is to take better advantage of the content created by Facebook’s user base. People are sharing status updates, supporting brands, and Liking articles and videos every day.

An enhanced search engine would benefit Facebook in several ways. Not only would it encourage more search activity among users, but it would also create a pay-per-click ad opportunity. This is great for both Facebook and advertisers as it gives members one less reason to leave the site.

While it’s unlikely that Facebook will challenge Google, an improved search would mean a better overall experience — something that could, down the road, further the competition between the social network and Google+.

[Via: Search Engine Land, Image credit: Kristin Wall]