Big Opportunities for Small Businesses in Facebook Pages Redesign

SuzanneVara
Suzanne Vara Advertising & Marketing Managing Director , Kherize5 Advertising & Marketing

Posted on February 12th 2011

Big Opportunities for Small Businesses in Facebook Pages Redesign


Facebook has redesigned the pages which, for most of the small business world, are our business pages. These new changes are similar to the individual pages in the layout, however, there are quite a few other changes that are big opportunities for businesses to take advantage of to make their pages much more interactive and functional.

The upgrade is optional at this point, however, all pages will be converted over on March 10. The redesign is the what most are focusing on however this is not the main event here. Let’s take a tour of the new layout changes before we delve into the other changes that are much more significant.

Facebook Page Layout Changes

1. Strip of Photos. Facebook will be displaying the photos that are the most recent from your wall and those that were tagged. It will not display any photos added by fans. If you do not wish for a photo to be displayed, simply roll over it, click  X and a new one will appear. You can get creative here and have the photos as almost a banner.

2. Navigation. The navigation is no longer tabs at the top of the page, but now vertical links under the profile photo. If the profile photo is set to full height, the navigation moves to below the fold, meaning that visitors will have to scroll down to find it. The field for the tabs is smaller as it was 520 however now it appears to be 493.

3. Wall Posts. There are now two Wall filters. The posts on your page can be viewed as the posts you as the admin put up or viewed as the top posts from Everyone. As the admin, you can set a default under edit page. The Everyone option places the most interacted, useful and meaningful posts at the top even if they are before a new update. This could have a page look as if there is not a lot of recent activity as a posting from a week ago could be at the top. Jason Keath from Socialfresh.com shows this in his 7 changes to Facebook video.

4. Page Interactions. The functionality of the pages have increased as the pages now have a voice with the ability to like and comment as the page.

a. Voice. As the admin of the page, you can respond to comments on the page as yourself via your personal profile or as the business page. This is a simple switch from your individual page in going to Account, and click Use Facebook As Page. Once you select that, the page(s) that you are the admin for pop up for you to select by clicking switch.

b. Likes. The business page can now like other pages and not just favorite them. Once you like another page, you can feature them on your page and also receive their news feeds. This clears up your individual page and pushes all business related aspects to your business page.

c. Email Notifications. Admins finally can receive an email notifications when someone interacts on the page. This is a welcomed change as so admins can respond timely to interactions/comments/questions, etc on the page. To receive email notifications for your page, go to your individual page, click Account, then Account Settings, then the Notifications tab, scroll down to Pages and then click the link “Change email settings for individual Pages” and a new window pops up so you can set emails to come for each page you admin.

When you upgrade the page, you cannot go back to the old page. Once you do upgrade the page, take the time to review all of the links above to be sure you configure your settings so you can manage the page in a way that works best for you as outlined below.

Facebook Page Settings

1.Your Settings. Admins can set the preference to always post as the page name and not your individual profile or have the option to post as the page or individual profile. The default is set to post as just the page name so you have to opt out. Click on your setting and it pops up and simply uncheck the box.

Facebook Page Posting as Page

 

2. Manage Permissions. After the upgrade, click Edit Page to view the settings. The page defaults to Manage Permissions. This link is also located on the left side in the menu bar should you wish to change the settings at a later time. Admins can block certain keywords, phrases, etc and they will be marked as spam and not appear on the wall for the public. However, they will appear for the admin in gray. There is also a profanity setting which can be set to none, medium or strong.

Facebook Page Settings

3. Basic Information. The next link under Manage Permissions is the Basic Information. The Basic Information is the company information that you wish to for visitors of the page to know about your company. There are predetermined Categories that are not as robust as they could be however there are a considerable amount of choices to select for your business from the drop downs. The categories in the left drop down are also predetermined for the categories on the right drop down. In other words you cannot find a category in the left drop down and try and go outside of that category for the sub category in the right drop down. These categories are displayed below the company name and above the photos.

4. Profile Picture. The profile picture size has been reduced some from 200 x 600 pixels to 180 x 540. The height with this new size cannot be more than 3x the width.

5. Featured. Here is where you can feature the pages that your page has liked and also there is a feature to feature the admin photo. This is another welcomed feature as you can like a page and showcase it on your page and not on your individual page. We can show companies that we outsource to, use as a resource, etc.You can also feature the photo of the admin(s) so that there is recognition between the individual and their company.

 

Facebook Pages Featured

6. Marketing. This link provides different ways of draw attention to your page.

a. Advertising on Facebook. This something to consider as it is incredibly targeted as you may be reaching your audience to have them gain awareness of your product/services. The click through rates for ads on Facebook are quite loq but we cannot deny that there is an awareness factor (which may be a nuisance to users but they are seeing it).

b. Tell Your Fans. The tell your fans link is a means of uploading your contacts from Outlook or an email service provider (like BlueSky Factory, MailChimp, etc) or from an email provider (like Hotmail, Gmail, etc) and Facebook will store them so you can send an email alerting your email contacts of your page. This is a bit risky as this could be viewed as spam.

c. Get a Badge and Like Box. If you have not already done so, you can get a badge or the like button for your website or blog. Both of these are easily created and embeded into just about every site on the web.

d. Create Alias. Each page can have a username. This is the unique url that you change the page to once you achieve 25 fans. Not much to do here but good to check to be sure that you do indeed have the unique url set for you page.

e. Send an Update. This is a quick and easy way to send an update via email to all the fans. Nothing new here but was worth mentioning as you can send an email to all fans that you have updated the page.

7. Exporting Facebook Page Updates to Twitter. You can link your page to Twitter to export your page updates. This is a feature that you must enable and is not automatic. For pages this may be a useful feature but we know that linking different platforms is not always a good idea.

Export Facebook Page Updates to Twitter

Facebook Adds iframe Tabs

The updates are not limited to the design and the settings. The additional upgrades are pretty significant as there is additional functionality in the design and the tracking that are now afforded through the addition of iframes. Iframes, which is short for inline frames, which according to Nikolay Valtchanov on the Facebook Developer are:

“apps that run across Facebook (including Pages and Canvas applications) using the same simple, standards-based web programming model (HTML, JavaScript, and CSS). In addition, you can easily integrate social plugins and the Graph API within your tab.”

The iframes are a window that can be a part of a page or an entire page from your website that is displayed in the tab. This will be useful for short term campaigns, contests, giveaways, events, etc. as they can be can be changed quickly and are pretty simple to upload.

How to add an iframe Page Tab

To add the iframe, edit the Facebook integration settings in the developer app then create the tab name and the tab url that you wish visitors to see in the left navigation. The app must be added to the page by the admin. The Facebook Developer blog has a step-by-step on how to add the new tab in their guide.

Facebook Pages iframe tabs

 

Facebook Platform and Page Policies

With any change to Facebook comes the policy changes and this one is no different. The new platform and page policies which was updated on February 10, 2011, while lifting some of the technical limitations, it places some functional limitations. Some are ones that you would expect; you cannot have anything that proxies, collects, requests users names and/or passwords, there must be a log out option on your website that also logs them out of Facebook but worth mentioning (as really is everyone going to read the policies) are the special provisions for apps on pages:

a. Apps on Pages must not host media that plays automatically without a user’s interaction.

b. When a user visits your Page, if they have not given explicit permission by authorizing your Facebook app or directly providing information to your Page, you may only use information obtained from us and the user’s interaction with your Page in connection with that Page. For example, you must not combine information from any other sources to customize the user’s experience on your Page and may not use any information about the user’s interaction with your Page in any other context (such as analytics or customization across other Pages or websites).

It is a good idea though to head on over and read the platform and page policies as it is not very long and it is not full of legal jargon.

These are a considerable amount of changes that does require a lot of attention once you upgrade to be able to set your page to the settings that work best for you.

What do you think of the new changes? Also, is it time to call "Pages," "business pages" or develop some sort of name, as "Pages" is confusing and so generic. Which page, your individual page, the page, very confusing...

photo credits:

Facebook home page: codemastersnake

Page Tabs: developers.facebook.com

SuzanneVara

Suzanne Vara

Advertising & Marketing Managing Director , Kherize5 Advertising & Marketing

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Comments

Neil Ferree
Posted on February 12th 2011 at 3:36PM

One of the best FB pages I've seen in the past few weeks is what Guy Kawasaki has rolled out showcasing his new book Enchantment. This is classic Kawasaki work product. http://www.facebook.com/enchantment

Once you hit his "like" button the process begins (ie) take the Enchantment Quiz, post your results to your Wall if you do choose. Very kewl indeed. I plan to mirror Guy's model for http://www.FerreeMoney.com very soon. You might want to visit Enchanment page and see how to do FB the right way.

Somehow, I got lucky and got a copy his new book, in hard cover no less. Thanks Guy!

 

SuzanneVara
Posted on February 16th 2011 at 7:49AM

Neil

 

thanks for posting the link to Guy's page. I had gotten the email but have not had the chance to head on over there. Now I shall to see it based upon your review.

The changes are to get businesses more involved and engaging on FB. People like a brand to receive some sort of reward whether thar bein couponing, elite club discounts, contest, etc. and allowing brands the opportunity to have the iframes to make the ir pages more interactive with a sign up form that is a window of what is on their home page is going to get more brands on board.

Best of luck to you with your page.

Brenn Almario
Posted on August 24th 2011 at 7:00PM

Yeah! i once heard sir Guy Kawasaki from IMU as my virtual instructor. Yes! indeed his thought is like a wind enchanting the mind of Marketing.

Posted on February 14th 2011 at 7:20AM

Nice consolidated write up on the feature updates. Thought we might not be able to get as creative with the photo strip as FB decided to have he display of the Photos as random :( as opposed to static on the FB Profiles.

SuzanneVara
Posted on February 16th 2011 at 8:01AM

Sathya


I have heard that but have not seen it. My page has remained static but then again there are not a whole lot of pictures as I was not as active on the page as I should/could have been. I will have to play with this as they should be static so that a page can have a really cool photo display. That is disappointing that they rotate.

Posted on February 14th 2011 at 6:32PM

Great article just started using facebook myself great tips!!!

allic
Posted on February 14th 2011 at 9:06PM

I agree, very comprehensive covering of the switch for pages.  I didn't know about managing permissions or some of the page policies, very helpful information.

 

In response to Sathya's comment below, I've actually seen a business page already using the randomized photo strip to thier advantage. ShortStack, a Facebook Tab customization service, started playing with the new layout and set it up so fans could refresh the page in an attempt to get a certain sequence with the photos (in their case, their logo three times in a row).  I thought it was a pretty clever way to make the most of the randomization, and could potentially be turned into some sort of promotional campaign.  They've taken it off already, but they actually have quite a few tips of how to play with the new layout.

Check them out, http://www.facebook.com/shortstacklab 

Posted on February 14th 2011 at 11:02PM

Excellent consolidation of the features.  Well thought out.

Thank you

Posted on February 15th 2011 at 8:31AM

Nice article Suzanne! Thank you!

I have updated my fan page, www.facebook.com/AQUA6

And linked my fanpage to my website (www.aqua6.org)

There is something I still didn't understand, the option "use facebook as a page"

Thanks

 

Posted on February 15th 2011 at 5:28PM

The idea is that you can take on the persona or identity of your page. Instead of being John Doe on Facebook, you would be Burger Shop or whatever your Page was called. Once you take on this persona you can see how many new fans your Page has received and also get a slew of notifications that will help you keep connected to your fans. You can also go to other Pages and comment as Burger Shop instead of having to reference your Page in your post. You are also able to Like other Pages as your Page.

Basically you become your Page. Try it out and have some fun with it. Hope this helps.

Stephen from ShortStackLab.com

SuzanneVara
Posted on February 16th 2011 at 7:53AM

Thanks! To elaborate a bit more on what Stephen said, instead of commenting or posting to a page in your individual na,me, you can now switch and comment and post as the company page. It helps to gain awareness of the fan/business page and not always be your individual page. It is a great tool as I did pkay around with it and for someone like myself, who prefers to use my facebook page as personal it is very helpful to have the fan/business page have a voice.

Hope that this helps.

Posted on February 15th 2011 at 3:34PM

Thanks for great tips - just started a page for our group - New England Lace Group - this will come in really handy - on our way to getting 25!

 

SuzanneVara
Posted on February 16th 2011 at 7:58AM

Patty

Well I/Kherize5 just became lucky #10. I too am building the page out as I had it but never really used it much as I could not like as the business page. The addition of this feature is welcomed greatly as I can have the business like pages and keep my individual page to close friends and family.

Keep up the good work and the 25 will come and then more.

 

lizrogers
Posted on February 16th 2011 at 12:43AM

What if I manage 2 pages for 2 different businesses. Can I take on the persona of either one? I'm a little confused about that.

SuzanneVara
Posted on February 22nd 2011 at 8:13PM

Liz

Yes you can. It will be in the drop down menu under account.

Posted on February 17th 2011 at 3:36PM

I agree that the name "Page" is very ambiguous. I've been calling them business pages, but if it's for a person -- I.e., a professional page when you want to keep your regular Facebook profile private -- or a website that is just for hobby, the name still doesn't fit.

I like that they've added the option to upload your email contacts, but I still think they need to focus on more ways to bring awareness to your page. If someone is not already your friend on your regular profile, you can't invite them to the page.

I think this is a start, though, and hope that they will continue to improve things that will make our experience better.

Posted on February 17th 2011 at 5:01PM

Thanks for the good info. I am hoping to keep up and learn these before the next round. I wish there was a way to get the news feed on a chronological feed. Sometimes the leading post on the page is old--kind of a bummer.

Darren Scott Monroe
Posted on February 17th 2011 at 5:26PM

Great article! Hey the interesting trend has been the whole adding your fanpage to favs so people can comment on other popular fanpages as their fanpage profile.

 

SuzanneVara
Posted on February 23rd 2011 at 12:31AM

Darren

I think that is one of the best features. It not gives brands a chance to interact off their own page as the brand and not an administrator/person that no-one knows who they are. For the brand the more they interact, the more exposure, for FB, well it keeps the brands and the users engaged on FB and not going elsewhere.


Happy to see your smiling face in the comments!

Posted on February 25th 2011 at 2:27PM

One question. How do you get your wall posts about another company to show up on their page as well (like when you use the @ sign in twitter your tweets show in their feed)? 

 

For example, if I am having a sale on a product of a company that also has a facebook page, I would like my post to show up. I have seen this done where the company name is highlighted and linked to their facebook page but I can not figure out how to do it. What am I missing?

Posted on February 28th 2011 at 3:06AM

Hi 

I think the changes are great. One thing which would be nice, though, is the ability for a page admin to be able to tag people (i.e. people who 'Like' your page) in a post/update. 

Cheers

Paul

 

 

Posted on March 6th 2011 at 7:45PM

I'm concerned about the order of posts on the wall.  I want EVERYONE to be able to see ALL posts in chronological order and can't figure out how to make that happen?  Any ideas????

Posted on March 15th 2011 at 3:39PM

Suzanne, 

I would like to customise a little my fan page,  I already took a look to deltina hay video, it's great, do you have some other ideas for customising the fan page or the webpage? www.aqua6.org

Big thanks in advance

 

Posted on May 25th 2011 at 9:33PM

HI!

Great article. Thansk very much.

If you have a moment, I have a quick question --

 re

4b. Likes. The business page can now like other pages and not just favorite them. Once you like another page, you can feature them on your page and also receive their news feeds. This clears up your individual page and pushes all business related aspects to your business page.

 

When I am in Facebook, as my company which has a Page, not a prifle, I don't see the LIKE buttons on other company pages. When I go to the some corporate page through my personal profile, I see hte LIKE button. Any suggestions.

 

Thanks! Jess

Posted on July 1st 2011 at 7:34AM

Hi Suzanne, Thank You for sharing! You might also get value from www.facebook-fb.com to Submit and List Facebook Page URL, Products, Services, City, State, Country of Business and to Find Facebook Page URL of Business. Kindly share it with your friends! Best! Shakti Saran

Posted on August 2nd 2011 at 6:23AM

For 6b is there a limit for number of external emails you are allowed to tell the page to? I know for events there is a 300 pending limit. Is this true for tell fans feature as well?

webguy
Posted on August 24th 2011 at 4:46PM

Great post! But what about people who don't have the technical know-how or skill to create their own Facebook Landing Tabs? Aside from hiring an outside agency, which can be difficult when on a small budget, are there any easy ways that a regular user can create by themselves? I've come across contests run by small agencies giving away things like this... I did a quick search and found one run by Alpha Pixel Media (that's incidentally running on their facebook page here: http://facebook.com/alphapixelmedia go figure!) Do you think something like this a good idea to enter?

Brenn Almario
Posted on August 24th 2011 at 6:55PM

Yeah facebook nowadays changing some features cause of compitetor like google+, And i really don't know what's the future of the two social media sites. But for me, well lets see what will happen. Social Media like facebook is really dominating Social Network and also with the changes, other people hates the facebook chat's new look but for me it's okay, i don't give a care as long as my social media campaign still pushing through.