A summary of Facebook´s new Pages
Facebook is updating Pages with new design and functionality. This major update will be made permanent on 11 of March, 2011. Here are some of the most important changes:
- The ability to like and post on other pages as your page
- Notifications when fans interact with your page or posts
- New Page navigation bar instead of tabs
- A place to showcase photos along the top of your page
- frames instead of FBML for custom made content
The best news for brands on Facebook is that they don´t have to try and pull customers away from Facebook to get them onto their site. There are now better options for accomplishing their sales or branding goals entirely within Facebook.
Read on for a more detailed explanation of the new Pages, together with some conclusions and suggested strategies.
Design & Interface
- The profile picture size for Pages has been adjusted from 200×600 to 180×540
- The Info Subpage have replaced the short info section below the profile picture
- Tabs have been removed and changed into navigation icons placed below the profile picture
- The Fan Count section in the left column have been simplified, with fan pics eliminated
- A Page can now like other Pages and promote five other Pages in the left column
- Pages can now display the page owners/admins
- The five most recent photos that you have published or tagged your Page in are displayed randomly at the top of your Page. Photos posted by fans will not appear here
- Wall posts can now be sorted by Brand only posts, Top Posts or Most recent posts
- The display of friends who like this Page section, have been moved to the top right corner
Design & Interface – Conclusions
The removal of tabs is a big change which will most likely upset and confuse some users. The upside is that removing the tabs clears up the main content area from conflicting design elements. Brands have now a empty area to play around with and with the new Iframe functionality, they can do pretty much what they want with it.
The new navigation menu shows eight icons in its default view. The icon order can be changed, except for Wall and Info. Once users are used to the new navigation, it will be a big improvement since it opens up the Page and makes it more flexible, while keeping the navigation simple and clean.
The randomization of the top images encourages frequent uploads of new images rather than using it for branding, since it´s impossible to know in which order the images will be viewed. Some companies have already found creative use for this functionality. Here is a example.
There is a new area below the navigation menu which displays five selected Pages that are liked by your Page (see more about this below). There is also a display of the Page admins, this information is optional, but it gives the Page a human face and is a very nice addition.
The removal of Film, Link and Video sections from the main interface, together with moving the “friends who likes this page” section to the top right corner, results in a cleaner interface. The consensus among most Facebook experts is that these changes are a big step forward.
It is also believed that with these changes, Facebook is attempting to bridge the gap between Pages and Websites, providing the same abilities as a site, but with the social perspective of Facebook.
- 10 – You can now post on other Pages as your Page and view a newsfeed for your Page
- 11 – Page Admins can now receive notifications when people post or comment on their Page
- 12 – Page admin can now easily switch between his personal Profile and the Page identity.
- 13 – When people visit your Page, they will be able to view friends who also like your Page, as well as other Pages that both they and your Page like
Page Interaction – Conclusion
The possibility to interact as a Page means that your Brand can use Facebook in the same way as individuals. Pages can now like other Pages, comment on them and even tag themselves in images. This means more exposure to your brand, in the same way as liking other friends gives your personal Profile a greater exposure.This is both a opportunity and a threat. You can now post on other Pages as your brand, increasing exposure/awareness. However, other brands can also post on your Page. This could open the door for a new kind of spam from less scrupulous companies.
The Static FBML App, which has been the primary custom content creation tool is to be pulled on March 11, 2011. Static FBML Tabs will instead be replaced with Facebook Canvas Application subpages and Iframes.
The good news for Static FBML users is that Facebook will continue to support existing installed applications and the custom tabs, as well as continue to allow admins to add and edit their custom tabs, even after March 11, 2011. However, they do urge people to migrate their custom tabs to iFrames sooner rather than later, as they are gradually eliminating FBML.
Creating Canvas Application subpages is slightly more complicated than creating new Static FBML tabs. The age of the amateur coder on Facebook may therefore be coming to a close. This is mainly a good thing since it will lead to better designed Pages and a more professional environment.
The Iframe opens up new possibilities since a Facebook Page can now do anything a normal web page can do. This is in line with Facebooks intention to bridge the gap between normal websites and Facebook.
You can also download this report as a PDF.
This post is based on information gathered from many sources, particulary these three fine articles:
Other Facebook Resources
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