How to Customize a Business Page on Facebook

Getting Started: How to Set Up a Facebook Page

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Create a Facebook Account

If you do not already have a Facebook account, visit the main Facebook home page, and create one. You can create a personal account or business account, but not both. If you will only be using Facebook for your business, set up your account as a business account, but be aware that business accounts have less functionality and options than personal accounts.

If you will ever use Facebook for personal reasons (in addition to business promotion) or want full access to Facebook tools and information, set up your account as a personal account. You can choose settings so that your business page is seen and treated separately from your personal page—known as your "profile" page in Facebook terms.

Facebook accounts are free, but remember, you can only have one account. If you already have a personal Facebook page account, you will have to create your business page ​off that account. If you create more than one account and Facebook catches you, they will disable or delete one or both accounts.

Create Your Basic Business Page on Facebook

There are two ways to create a page on Facebook, and both require you to log into your account. After you log in your personal profile page, click on the "Advertising" link on the side of the page to be taken to a new page where you can then create a page.

The second way you can create a page is to go to the Facebook Page creation home page, select the type of page you want to create (i.e., local business, company, brand, etc.), and select additional options to help Facebook know more about your business. Once you select the options for the type of page you want to create, it will automatically be created for you, and you will be redirected to the newly created page.

Logging Into Your Business Page

After you have created a business page, you can access it in the future by logging into your main account, selecting "My Account" from the drop-down menu, and selecting "Use Facebook as Page." If you have more than one page you will be shown the options to choose from—just click on the particular page you want to access. Although you can have only one Facebook account and personal page, you can have multiple business or other pages.

Basic Settings for Facebook Business Page

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When you're on your new page, a series of options appear at the top, side, and in the content of the page. The main body of your new page contains lots of options, most of which should be done after your site is set up. These options include:

Add an Image

This image will show next to your posts when you update your business page. Choose a logo (or friendly face if you do not have a logo) that will work well on the site. Never leave this blank—it is better to use a temporary image than not to have one at all.

Invite Your Friends

Do this only after you are done customizing your page—you want them to see it at its best. When you invite friends, the goal is to get them to "Like" your page to give it more branding power. When you get 25 people to "Like" your business page, Facebook allows you to have a custom URL address for the business page. Until you have 25 fans, you have to use the default URL that Facebook creates for your page. People who "Like" your page are called "Fans," and pages can have an unlimited number of fans—personal profile pages can only have 5,000 "Friends."

If you already have Facebook fans or subscribers, you can also invite them to become fans on your new page. Although you can invite fans anytime, it is recommended that you only invite fans once your page has been completely set up. If you invite them to a page in progress, they may get a bad first impression.

Post Status Updates

When you are ready to post announcements and updates, use this option. Again, it is recommended that you start adding status updates just before announcing your new page. It's important that you have at least a few updates on your page before you announce it, so visitors have something to read and respond to.

Promote Your Page on Your Website

This step is only recommended after your page has been completely set up. This option will give you different codes you can put on your website to direct people to your website so they can "Like" it. You do not have to use this tool—you can also create your HTML codes, hyperlinks on a website, and if you use WordPress, there are many free plugins available to help you connect your website with Facebook.

Set Up Your Mobile Phone

This option allows you to set up your mobile phone so that you can upload images and updates from your phone. Anytime you want to see these options appear again, click on the "Get Started" link in the sidebar on your page (you must be logged into your account).

The Edit Page Button on Facebook Pages

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When you create a page on Facebook, an "Edit Page" button appears at the top right corner of the page. Click on this to get into the real heart of customizing your page. When you select edit page notice that the menu options in your page's sidebar change.

Your Settings

This options lets you set posting preferences and email settings. Unless you want all your posts to automatically post on your business page when you are logged in, uncheck "Posting Preferences" box.

Manage Permissions

Permissions allow you to decide who can post comments, images, and links to your page, and who can see your page. You can also set restrictions to limit access by minors.

Basic Information

Once you have 25 fans, you can use this option to select a business page name. Include information about your website, a brief description, and link to your site. The information you add in the "About" field will display on your business page so keep it short.

Profile Picture

It is another place where you can opt to upload your logo or a picture that will show (by default) next to all your updates as well as in the main image box on your business page. It will not change the picture displayed on your profile page (if you are using a personal account.)

Featured

Facebook should not be used strictly as a means to sport your announcements. The most successful Facebook users create pages that are interactive and build a sense of community. To help encourage others to visit your page, share the "wealth" by adding (promoting) featured Page Owners and featured "Likes." These will show on your business page.

Marketing

From this screen option, Facebook offers the following tools to help you promote your business page: Advertise on Facebook, Tell your Fans, Get a Badge, and Add a Like Box to your Website. The above options are the same, or similar to those found in the "Get Started" options panel.

Manage Admins

This is where you give administrative access to other people and customize their level of access. To give someone admin access, they must first "Like" your page.

Apps

This is where you will add tools and features to customize the look and functionality of your Facebook page.

Mobile

Select this option to set up a variety of mobile device access features.

Insights

Shows statistics and information about how many people visit your page and how they are using your pages.

Help

Information and FAQs answered by Facebook about setting up and maintaining your page.

Using Apps to Customize Your Facebook Page

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To create a custom look for your Facebook page, you need to use apps. There are many apps you can use on Facebook, and some are more complicated to use than others. When customizing your Facebook page, it helps to know HTML programming and basic web design.

To find available apps, go to your Facebook page, select "Edit Page" at the top right, and then click on "Apps" on the left-hand sidebar. You will see a list of a few standard apps most commonly used on Facebook. To view or use any of these apps, simply select the option "Go to App."

To find more app choices, click on the link below the standard apps, "Browse More Applications." When searching for apps to customize the appearance of your Facebook page, skip the menu choices and go right to the "search" box. Good search terms to find design apps include: "custom," "customize page," and "FBML."

Facebook Markup Language (FBML)

FBML is the code language used in apps that all HTML code. FBML works with most HTML codes, but not all. When you search apps for FBML, you will find apps that can be used to customize the look of your business page.

Static FBML is probably the most widely used app for customization. It requires a knowledge of HTML, but otherwise, it is not difficult to use.

Create a look for your page in HTML, copy the code into the app, and give it a title. The title will automatically be added to your pages' left sidebar with a link to the sub-page. For example, you might use Static FBML to create an "About Us" page.