Upcoming Facebook Changes for Pages

If you’re on Facebook at all, I’m sure you’re well aware not only of the Facebook changes implemented over the last couple of weeks, but how everyone feels about them. These adjustments, both minor and major, occurred to personal profiles vs. professional business pages.

Now that the ruckus has died down a bit, there have been some quiet changes to the Facebook Pages side of things. If you’re running a small business, a Facebook page is a great way to get the word out and interact with people regarding the products and/or services you provide. Here’s a bit of information regarding the most recent changes for your Facebook business page.

Reviews and Discussions Tabs

If you look on the left side of a Facebook business page, you’ll see a list of tabs underneath the profile picture (I used Verticalwerks on the left as an example).

If you look down the list, you’ll see a tab called “Discussions” and one called “Reviews.” Although available right this second, they’ll no longer be used on Pages as of October 31, 2011. If you visit your business page, you may get the following message:

We’re Making Pages Better
We want to make sure the tools you use to manage your page are as effective as possible. Here’s an update that may affect how you connect with your audience:
Reviews and Discussions: The best way to encourage conversation and feedback is through posts and comments on your Wall. To focus on this, we’ll be removing the Reviews and Discussions apps on October 31st.

If you search for more information, the message simply states:

What happened to the Reviews and Discussions tabs on my Facebook Page?

We’ve found that the best way to encourage conversation and feedback is through posts and comments on your Wall. We’ve removed these tabs for now as we work on tools to help you moderate and filter content. Our goal is to help you can manage [sic] everything from one powerful place. Stay tuned.On place pages with a location, fans can still write a recommendation for their friends or others from the right-column that says Recommendations.

Recommendations

This change might not seem so ground-breaking – how many times have you been on a Review or Discussion tab? What strikes me about this particular change is the focus on Recommendations that people can leave regarding your business. Like comments left on Yelp, Google Places and even your own website, these recommendations could become a pretty important marketing tool – time will tell.

Username Changes

Right now, you have to have 25 or more “Fans” or “Likes” before you can change a personal or page Username to something other than “www.Facebook.com/random-numbers-and-letters.” It appears that soon this will no longer be the case – I have heard from credible sources that soon we will be able to create a Facebook username for your business page that will help direct everyone there without any extra waiting.

In anticipation of that change (I’m wondering if it will be with the other changes on 10/31), here are tips to make the username changes easier for you!

Professional Page Username

The Verticalwerks Facebook page address is http://www.facebook.com/Verticalwerks, which means we already have set up a specialized username.

If we didn’t already have a specialized username, we could create one by following these directions:

  1. There’s an “Edit Page” button in the top right corner of the page. Click it.
  2. In the column on the left, click on “Basic Information”
  3. The second section on this page is “Username.” This is where you can set up the username for your business so that the Facebook URL will be “www.Facebook.com/your-business-username-here.”

It’s essential to remember that once the username has been set for the business page, there’s no changing it. Once you go through the steps, a box like this one will pop up:

This will be your last chance to change your mind!

Personal Profile Username

You can also create a username for your personal profile. My personal one is pictured below. Since “Kelly Wilson” happens to be a common name, I had to get a little creative.

I didn’t mind, however, because it’s now so much easier to tell people how to find me on Facebook. To create your own username for your personal profile, follow these directions:

  1. Up in the top right, there is your profile photo, your name, “Home,” and an arrow.
  2. Click on the arrow and then click on “Account Settings”
  3. On the left side, make sure your on “General” – see screen shot above.
  4. On this page, your name will be first and the option to create a username will be second. Follow the simple directions for your own personal username!

For additional help and tips when it comes to managing your business page, Facebook itself has come up with its own page. If you have a Facebook page (chances are good that you do), then I would recommend first clicking the LIKE button on the Facebook Pages page.

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