If there’s one thing you can say about Facebook, it’s that it didn’t reach its projected user base of 1.9 billion by being complicated to use. On the world’s biggest social network, your relationship status might be complicated but creating a business page shouldn’t be.
People would still go through the trouble even if it were, though, because Facebook has a lot to offer.
It’s indispensable for small businesses, at least partially because creating a page costs nothing. As a genuine marketplace, using Facebook is more helpful when starting an eCommerce business. Finally, it’s a great place to promote your other online assets – there’s no better place to promote your site on social media than Facebook.
But above all, Facebook is still the place to be because that’s where the people you want to do business with are most likely to be. Unless you’re doing business with other businesses. In that case, you might want to pay more attention to LinkedIn.
If you’re sticking with Facebook, here are the seven steps standing between you and a fully-functioning Facebook business page.
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1. Sign up or sign in
Before you start creating a Facebook business page, you’ll need a Facebook account. A regular account will do just fine. If you don’t already have one, you can create it by navigating to Facebook and filling out the form.
If you’ve already signed up, you can simply log in. Once you do, in the upper right-hand corner of your page, you’ll see a “+” icon. Clicking on it will show a dropdown “Create” menu. Choose “page.”
2. Create your page
When you choose to create a page, Facebook will take you to the page builder. Before you can do anything with the page, you’ll need to create it. But to turn that “Create Page” button blue, you’ll first need to provide all the information required in the left-hand side portion of the builder.
At the very least, you’ll need to provide the name of your page, as well as the category. The name can be the name of your business. As for the category, start typing your industry or niche and find the closest match.
You can come back and fill out the description later. The name and the category are all it takes to create a page. You’ll see the “Create Page” button turn blue once you’re ready to create the page.
Press it, and you’ll be able to move on to the next step.
3. Set up your page and add images
After you’ve created the page, the right-hand side menu will switch to “Set Up Your Page,” and you’ll be able to add photos – both a cover photo and a profile picture.
The general guidelines Facebook will remind you of are to use a logo or something identifiable as a profile picture, and something more representative of your business as the cover photo. You should also make sure you’re using the appropriate size for the social network.
If you like how your profile photo looks and you think you’ve set your cover picture just right, you can move on. If you haven’t checked the mobile preview, maybe do that first – it’s as simple as pressing the smartphone icon in the upper right-hand corner of the preview area.
Once you’re done and you press save, you’ll be in for a treat.
4. Establish your page’s identity
After pressing “Save,” you’ll see the complete back end of your page, the place where you can manage all of its aspects. It can be a bit overwhelming because there are just so many options and awesome things to do.
Before you move on to filling out the page, you might want to unpublish your page first. This won’t delete any of your progress or change any information – it will just ensure that no one will stumble upon the page while it’s still being created. You can find the option in Settings.
Facebook might ask you what your reason for unpublishing the page. If you say you’re doing it because the page isn’t finished yet, Facebook will ask you what you need to finish the page. Give it a reason and unpublish the page – you’ll be able to get back into the setting and reverse this at a later time.
Moving through the “Set Your Page Up for Success” guide is a good choice for your next step. Establishing the page’s identity would be the first thing you need to do. If you’ve skipped something in the previous steps it will show up here. If nothing else, you’ll get a chance to center the profile picture.
After taking care of this, you can move on to fill out the next section – it’s an important one for businesses.
5. Provide info and preferences
The next step involves providing all that useful information about your business you want people to know. Do you have a website? This is the place where you can connect it to your page. Do you have a physical location you want to include? Business hours? A phone number? Messaging preferences?
If any of this information doesn’t apply to you – like if you don’t have a website, for example, press the “More” button and you’ll be able to choose that it doesn’t apply to your website.
The last of the options, “Add a Page button,” is a special one. When you choose a page button, you are choosing what type of action you want people to do when visiting the page. Click on “Add Button” and you’ll see several options you have at your disposal – some of which come with options of their own.
When you pick one of the options, it will appear below your cover photo. Don’t worry, you’ll be able to change your mind and pick another page button later.
6. Final preparations before going live
Creating a Facebook business page might be simple, but it can still take some time to complete. Up until now, you’ve been covering the basics. At this point, however, you might decide to go off the beaten track and fill out the page before presenting it to the world.
There are tons of things you can do right now. You could try, for example, to add a username to your page – you’ll find the option beneath your page’s name. Adding it is a great way to make sure people will be able to find your page easily – after you’ve published it, that is.
This is also a great time to go over the business tools Facebook provides. You can set up a store, set up appointment bookings, or show a menu, all depending on the type of business you run and the reasons you created the page.
You should also check the settings and configure some important things like:
- Visitor posts on your page
- Age and country restrictions
- Automated responses in messaging
- Assigning page roles to people
- Connecting the page to an Instagram account
None of this is particularly difficult to do. However, the settings are extensive, and it might take some time to go through all of them.
7. Introduce your page
Technically, your page was created four steps ago – anything you did in between was setting it up and fine-tuning it. When you think that’s done and your page can perform the functions you had in mind for it – let you showcase products, communicate with customers, get them to sign up for your newsletter – you can publish the page again.
The final prompts in the “Set Your Page Up for Success” guide will have you invite friends to like your page and create your first post.
Inviting your friends is a way to leverage your network to give your page an initial boost. However, that boost is anything but organic – people will do it to support you, not necessarily because they are interested in your business. The jury’s still out on whether you should do this or not.
Things are much clearer with the welcome post – you should definitely create it. Creating posts, or posting content, is one of the activities that are expected from an active page, and it’s a great way to engage an audience. You can add photos, locations, and even moods to the post.
With that, this part of the work on your page is done. Don’t get too comfortable, though, as maintaining a Facebook page requires a lot of work. So, get ready to learn about advertising on Facebook, keeping visitors engaged, and using Insights to grow your page.
A Facebook Business page is a great asset for a business of any size. For a small business with a small advertising budget, however, it can be incredibly useful. All it takes to create one is some spare time and a couple of ideas for content.
Keep in mind, however, that creating the page is the first step towards establishing a useful and profitable social media presence for your business. Don’t expect things to happen overnight. You’ll have to keep at it to see results.
Guest author: Marko Ticak writes about everything from marketing to writing. He likes getting caught in the rain, and he doesn’t mind it’s a cliché. When he doesn’t write, he listens to music and looks for things to write about.