New Facebook page layout has ruined my fan base!

Posted by in Social Media & Online PR on March 19th, 2009 10 Comments

I wrote a couple of weeks ago about a successful little campaign using Facebook pages, which I think is the best post I’ve read about Facebook pages- you should read it;-)

Then last week, as Jennie reported in this post, Facebook went and gave their Pages a redesign, around the same time they rolled out a new profile page design which led to comments on the Facebook blog such as these-

“Dear Facebook,
I used to love you, but now I have to go, you’re ugly now, and bloated with useless information, I’m embarrassed to be seen with you in public. In fact to even mention that i ever liked you is repulsive to me, a reproach on my on sanity. You were fun once. I used to log on 10-20 times a day, yesterday I got on once, in the hope that you would change…but i know better…the only person i can change is me…”

To be fair to Facebook they get this kind of reaction whenever they do a redesign.

Anyway since the new Facebook Pages (business pages) were launched on the 11th March the number of new fans my page has been getting has dropped from about 80-100 to under 20. Coincidence? I don’t think so. Check out the stats…

facebook page old vs new1 New Facebook page layout has ruined my fan base!

You can literally see the new fan numbers drop as Facebook flick the switch on the new page layout on March 11th.

Whats the problem with the new pages?

I have a couple of theories why the new layout is stopping people becoming fans.

Where’s the button gone?

The first thing I noticed with the new layout was the big button in the right column which said something like ‘become a fan‘ (sorry couldn’t find a screenshot) has been replaced with a little link under the profile image on the left and another little link next to the page name. I say bring back the button!

new facebook buttons1 New Facebook page layout has ruined my fan base!

News feeds

I spoke in my previous post about how the Facebook snowball viral effect happens when people become your fan and an announcement is made in their news feed, meaning all their friends will see it.

moz screenshot 5 New Facebook page layout has ruined my fan base!profile1 New Facebook page layout has ruined my fan base!

The old news feed had a big chunky announcement including an image. On the new look news feed the announcement is tiny with no image. Also photo’s and status changes have become more prominent on the feed at the same time meaning the Page announcement is battling for attention, and losing.

new facebook feed page1 New Facebook page layout has ruined my fan base!

What to do?

What can we do about this change? As yet I’m not sure. Apparently Page updates will start appearing in news streams ‘soon’, this should increase the exposure opportunities for your page. Also pages seem to be showing up in the ‘highlights’ boxes in the right hand side of the homepage now although this is the main Facebook ad position so I expect this position will suffer from banner blindness.

But in terms of converting views on your page into fans I’ve come up with a crude solution to fix Facebook’s usability issues! The ‘become a fan’ link is right below the profile image on the new layout so just include your call to action in the picture…

facebook i love ibiza 12373815902461 New Facebook page layout has ruined my fan base!

I’ll do an update and let you know if this improves my new fan rate.

Has anyone else noticed their new fans dropping since the 11th March update?

pixel New Facebook page layout has ruined my fan base!