This is a guest post by Kevin Lau.
By now you will undoubtedly have worked with the new Facebook page design. Either you’ll like it or you won’t, and there are probably features you will think are pretty good and others you won’t be so keen on. This seems to be par for the course when it comes to Facebook.
Here are some of the pros and cons to be aware of in terms of the new design. Do you agree or disagree with them? Are there others that haven’t been mentioned here that have annoyed you or pleased you?
PRO: More Details in the About Section
This is great news for anyone who wants to tell people what they’re all about. Connecting with people is a big part of the reason people use Facebook in the first place, so it makes sense that this section should be enhanced. You can also to link back to your website quite easily in this section, so there is a bigger opportunity to get more traffic to your site now than there might have been before. Make sure the link happens near to the beginning otherwise you won’t see the whole thing. You’ll get about 165 characters so experiment to make the most of them.
CON: No More Landing Tab
If you designed your Facebook page to bring people in and engage them right from the start, you’ll hate this new feature. People will not be able to land on a specific page anymore – instead they’ll find themselves looking at your wall. Not exactly the most thrilling experience for many, I’m sure. I’ve seen lots of engaging landing pages that have clearly had a lot of work put into them. It’s a shame that you no longer get the option of making such a page the first one people see.
PRO: Icons Have Been Introduced as a Way of Catching the Eye
Now this is a good move by Facebook and one I like. Tabs once appeared as simple text links, which is fine as far as it goes but they don’t have the same punch as an image. It would appear that Facebook agrees, because they will now introduce icons to replace the text links. This means you can promote an offer and design a special icon to represent it. It’s a fine way of promoting a freebie of some kind and getting more click throughs as a result. It might be worth getting a designer to create some special icons for you in some cases, although some of the more standard ones (think of an RSS feed logo for example) can easily be found online.
CON: It Takes More Time to Build a Worthwhile Facebook Page
In some ways you get more freedom with the new design. But this in itself can be a curse. It means you cannot simply fill in the blanks and hope for the best. You have to take time to ensure everything looks as good as it possibly can, otherwise it will just look like a disorganized mess. This might put off newbies to Facebook who want to join to promote their business. If you are determined to make the best of it, it might be best to allocate a day or more just so you can do this. If you try and rush it it’s sure to backfire.
Are there too many cons – or not enough pros?
Of course everyone will have their own opinions on this. One of the biggest upsets seems to be the lack of the landing tab that people once used to bring people in and welcome them in the best possible way. We all hate change but some think that Facebook makes changes just for the sake of it rather than to help those who use the site. This would certainly seem to be the case in terms of getting everyone to look at your wall, which is probably one of the least appealing parts of your page.
Which camp do you fall into? Do you think the pros outweigh the cons, or are there just one or two detrimental changes that outweigh all the pros of the new Facebook page design?