By now I’m sure you’ll have seen Facebook’s new look for Pages. Originally announced back in March, Facebook made the new design mandatory last week following a brief voluntary upgrade period. This post will quickly explain the new changes, as well as what we’re doing at Gruvi to take advantage of the newly designed Facebook Page environment.
We’ll start with the Cover Photo, which Facebook have tweaked by placing the company name, category and Follow/Share buttons over it. Thankfully dimensions are unchanged, so there’s no need to resize/design your images. But while this is hardly a radical change, you will need to ensure that the newly overlaid elements don’t clash with your Cover Photo. Specifically, make sure any key areas are not obscured by buttons or text. Facebook has also nudged the profile photo up slightly – so you may need to take this into account too.
Next up are changes to Facebook Tabs. In the new design, Custom App Tab images are replaced by simple text links, only two of which are immediately visible alongside ‘Timeline’ and ‘About’. The rest are confined to a drop down menu, so you’ll want to make sure your tabs are listed in order of importance as soon as possible. Of course, if you have more than two important tabs this change may seem rather alarming. However, you can still gain exposure and drive traffic to these tabs by creating visually engaging posts that link to them. It’s likely that this was Facebook’s motivation behind this: they want you to post more. Regardless, the importance of promoting your content through posts, contests, etc. is now more important than ever.
The second major change concerning Tabs is that your Cover and Profile photos, as well as all navigation links (basically the whole ‘header’ area of the Facebook page), will remain visible at the top of all Tabs. Previously, Tabs would open in almost an entirely separate space, distancing them from your main page. To compensate for this, we at Gruvi built our apps with branding in mind, including space for key artwork in the design of our players. With Cover and Profile photos now on display everywhere, the branding used on your main page carries across to the Tabs, and we’re already developing a new player app designed to take these changes into account. It will be ready for deployment by the end of the month, and should ensure a better user experience and a more balanced visual environment for your marketing campaigns.
Moving to the new Timeline, Facebook have ditched the dual column design, which previously snaked left and right down the page, in favour of the one-column feed seen on user profiles. Gone are the days when posts would render differently on Pages and the Newsfeed. The left side of the page now contains information about your brand/business; your Likes, Apps, Photos and About Us information and other details now occupy their own column.
Finally, Facebook have brought the admin panel to the fore and now you can access all key information on the main page itself, such as info about the ads you’re running, notifications, reach/like numbers, etc. Other admin tools including as Activity, Insights and Settings are now available along the top of the page, and a Build Audience button takes you straight into Ad Manager. An interesting new tool to note is ‘Pages To Watch’, which lets you compare the performance of your page to other similar pages on Facebook. This has the potential to offer great insights into where you can improve the usability and content of your page, and even the possibility of engaging in a crude form of A/B testing against other pages.
Overall, Facebook’s changes seem aimed at increasing order and uniformity across Pages and Tabs, making it easier for users to navigate and for you to stay on brand. Hopefully this article has been useful, but if you have further questions about changes to Facebook drop us an email at firstname.lastname@example.org – we’re happy to help you out!