Facebook has changed its layout (surprise, surprise), and this time, only Pages are affected. If your business has a Facebook Page (which it hopefully does), you may want to perk your ears. Last month, when we heard about the upcoming change, we went ahead and updated our Breaking Even page to get a lay of the land.
Here are some observations we’ve made about the layout:
- There’s more emphasis on video and photo. On the left sidebar, there is now a prominent display of your photos and videos. If your page doesn’t have a lot of either, this may be an opportunity for you to beef up that section of your page. Basically, the left column is dedicated to your “brand,” so before updating, take a look at your pictures (and videos, if you have them). It’s also good to remember that people love visuals anyway (“a picture is worth a thousand words”- and no one wants to be reading a thousand words on Facebook).
- The overall feel of the Pages are less “cluttery.” And, this is good for a couple of reasons. First, it’s aesthetically more appealing to have a clean looking page. When there’s too much going on, regardless of the site in question, it can be overwhelming and a bit frustrating. Second, it makes navigation easier for anyone who visits your page. Posts used to be disorganized (i.e. they weren’t displayed by date, and in general there was no rhyme or reason to how they were displaying), and for me, this was annoying. Now, there’s a clear chronological path people can follow, as opposed to the previous helter skelter format.
- Business pages now resemble individual profiles. In the grand scheme of things, this makes Facebook more coherent as a site. While Facebook still focuses most of it’s energy on people, there seems to be a move to make Pages more prominent. Profiles and Pages will always function differently, but keeping the visual appearance consistent is a smart move. Thumbs up, Zuckerburg.
- It’s easier for administrators to navigate. Accessing the various analytics and the activity log is roughly a hundred times easier with the new layout. As someone who manages a variety of Pages, I appreciate this. Finding what’s been posted, what’s been scheduled, and keeping track of messages or notifications is WAY easier now (I may have shed a few tears of joy with this one).
- You can customize the layout (within reason). Facebook does not want to relinquish too much control over customization, probably to avoid the potential of the horror show that was MySpace profiles. *Shudder* But, with the new Pages, you can drag and drop the sections of your page to reorder them. All you have to do is click the little Edit icon on any section, and boom! You’re ready to reorder your page.
June 19th is the official date when everything will automatically shift. For more information on what Facebook is saying about the new layout, this is a great article. And, at the risk of sounding like a nerd, I’d also recommend taking the “Tour” Facebook offers once you update your Page (it’s free and you can really make the most of the new layout). Have fun!