Facebook Timeline for Business Pages – Are you ready?

Now that you’ve created your business page on Facebook, they’re in the process of changing it.  And the changes are big ones.  Just like your personal page, your business page will automatically go to the Timeline format as of March 30th.  You can still preview what it will look like and make any changes.  You can even make the new format live now if you like.

But as of March 30th, you won’t have that choice.  It will automatically be changed for you.

Confused about the changes?  Or haven’t heard about them yet?

We’re here to help.

The biggest visual change is the addition of a Cover Photo…a big image that will stretch across the top of your page.  So start now by creating a compelling Cover Photo that helps tell your story.  It could be a picture of your products, a photo of people using your service, an interesting graphic or whatever makes sense for you.  But there are restrictions.

Your cover photo cannot have:

  • Price or purchase information, such as “40% off” or “Buy it on our website”
  • Contact information, such as web address, email, mailing address or other information intended for your Page’s About section
  • A request to Like or Share your page.
  • Calls to action, such as “Get it now” or “Tell your friends”

The maximum size for a Cover Photo is 851 x 315 pixels. But remember that your profile photo will overlap your cover photo, so build around it.

Your custom tags are changing and moving on the page.

The custom Facebook tabs you created have been moved from the left column to a bigger, more prominent position and renamed Views and Apps.  You’re  limited to only four tabs showing, and the first one must be Photos.  You can arrange the remaining tabs however you wish.

Make sure your profile picture still works.

On your current business page, your profile picture is cropped from your left sidebar image. The timeline gets rid of this sidebar image, although your profile picture carries over.  Chances are your profile photo will still work but you may want to double-check how it looks as it will be much smaller if you created a larger sidebar photo for your page.  And on the new business timeline page, your profile will sit on top of your cover photo.

Make sure that the profile photo works on its own, since it represents your brand on Facebook anywhere you post or comment. Your profile photo is 180 x 180 on your page, 32 x 32 on other parts of Facebook.

The layout of your wall is going to be different.

There will be two columns instead of one.  And there are ways to make the more important posts stand out.

  • Highlight: By default, updates to your page appear on either the left or right of the timeline which divides the page. By rolling over any of your page’s posts (but not your fans’ posts) you can highlight the post and expand it to the full width of the page, making it more prominent.
  • Pin: As you roll over an update, you can also click on the edit icon and choose to pin the post, which will make it appear at the top of your timeline, increasing its visibility. Again, you can only do this to your page’s posts. You can only pin one item at a time and after seven days the post will return to its regular place in your timeline. (You can always re-pin it.)

You’re going to have to rethink your Facebook marketing strategies.

Since you can’t ask someone to like your page in the cover photo, what can you do?

It is against Facebook guidelines to operate a raffle but you are allowed to offer something to everyone who likes your page.

The new Timeline format creates problems as well as opportunities for us.  Learn how to use it correctly and make it work to your benefit instead of against you.



2 thoughts on “Facebook Timeline for Business Pages – Are you ready?”

  1. Glenda: Things are happening so fast in internet marketing that it is hard to keep up. That is why we try to keep you informed as much as possible on the forum at giftretailersconnection.com. I’m not an expert on this by any means but if you have any questions as you get into it, just ask.

  2. Thanks for the “heads up” on this one, Joyce. You’re always on top of things. I keep “falling off” the top of my heap, then have to climb back up but never seem to reach the “on top of things”. Well, so much for air quotes! I had not paid attention to this, but had noticed some personal pages going to this new format and wondered why. I hope these changes won’t be as difficult as I fear. I’m glad you break it down for us to follow. Just hope I can. I’ve got to get on the stick and get this done.

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