The New Facebook Layout – For Fan Pages

11 Feb
February 11, 2010

Unless you haven’t logged into Facebook over the last few weeks you’ve probably noticed there have been some updates to the layout. You can read a summary of all these changes on Facebook’s blog.

Here at Sitewire we’ve been experimenting and trying to understand what this update is going to mean for fan pages. While the final shake down of these changes hasn’t completely come to pass here our some of our initial concerns and things we’ll be monitoring on the pages we’re managing:

  • “Top Feed” (previously, “News Feed”) is the default view, and only shows content from people and pages that the user interacts with most often, based on an algorithm that’s not fully defined quite yet. According to Jeff Widman of Brand Glue only 2 out of 1000 updates get posted on the home page feed.
  • Pages list – the pages list has gone missing. Previously, users could easily click “Pages” from the left hand navigation and see all updates from fan pages they follow.
  • Updates – Updates are basically Facebook messages (like email) that pages could send to fans. They show up in a special section of the inbox. Now, users can view messages in the notifications bar without ever visiting the inbox. However, the only way to know there are new updates is to visit the inbox. Even then, it’s only a bit of light grey text that shows up in the left hand navigation, they’d still have to click through that in order to see the updates.
  • Notifications – users used to get notified by activity from applications, meaning if your brand had an app associated with your fan page you could reach them that way. That got overwhelming due to apps like Farmville and is no longer supported.

Visual (click to enlarge):

It seems like an overall trend that will make it more difficult for pages to connect with people on Facebook, even with people who are already fans. We’ll be adapting our plans to focus on increasing interactions to maintain visibility and will continue to evaluate how Facebook fits into overall social media strategy after these changes.

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5 replies
  1. Edge Girl says:

    I like the new Facebook interface and access my personal pages easier so I can comment. People can use the feed option to place any page updates in their favorite feedreader.

    There are a lot of opinions on this but after a day or two of not liking it, I’ve settled in and find it easier and less cluttered.

    • Katie Van Domelen says:

      I totally agree with you from a user standpoint – just concerned about the level of difficulty that Facebook is creating when it comes to pages connecting with fans.

      When you say you can use the feed options on a page – do you mean exporting the pages feed into like Google Reader? Is there a trend in users doing that? I’ve never tried it myself so I’m not sure how it would work but I’ll check it out.

      Thanks!

  2. Chris E says:

    Hi Katie! I have accidentally read your timely blog while i was trying to figure out how to magically reappear one’s facebook fan page stat updates. For someone like me who is entirely more benefiting on the fan updates than friends’ updates, I am kind of freaking out especially if someone like me has at least 300 pages to keep abreast of every single day. So, having said that, I am wondering if you have find a way to tweak the main home page for the fan pages to pop out? thank u so much! appreciate your input! :)

    Chris

    • Katie Van Domelen says:

      Hi Chris,

      I’m not sure I know exactly what you mean, but it sounds like your trying to recreate a homepage feed that would only show the pages that you’re a fan of?

      To do that, I think the easiest way would be to click “Friends” in the left column. That will change the middle to show your friend list. Click the button in the upper right of the middle column that says “Create a list” – call it “Pages” or whatever you like. Then scroll through your friend list and add every page to that list. Now, whenever you click “Friends” in the left column, it should expand a list that includes a link titled “Pages.” When you click that, it will bring up all your page updates. Whenever you fan a new page you’d have to add it to this list as well.

      Facebook essentially used to create this list automatically and I don’t know why they took that feature away.

      Let me know if this works, thanks!
      .-= Katie Van Domelen´s last blog ..Friends Don’t Let Friends Ignore Facebook =-.

  3. Chris E says:

    Hi Katie,

    Sorry for the late reply, been busy for the last couple of days. Anyway, all I can say is WOW! Your advice in recreating the fan pages was so spot on! You’re a genius! I wouldn’t know what I’d do without you pointing this to me. It seemed quite obvious but I had no eye for detail quite as you do. :) Now, I got everything back in order just the way I wanted the pages to be. Yeah, you’re right about facebook taking away that automatic pages feature…I don’t get it why they’d have to fix something that ain’t broken.

    Katie you’re heaven sent! lol. Thank you so much for answering my question! I’m indebted to you, you know. If I can only get you a cup of coffee someday and have it delivered to you as my token of gratitude. Unfortunately I’m a thousand miles away! ha! Maybe an IOU note would do. LOL

    Or perharps, from now on, I’m gonna be a regular reader of your blog! what do you say? :)

    Once again, thanks!

    Chris

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