Facebook Timeline // Cover Photo

Mar 2 '12

Facebook Timeline // Cover Photo

Facebook has announced the integration of the Timeline layout to business pages. Facebook says it will automatically switch for everyone on March 30th, although we've already started to see this new look that features the "Cover Photo" look on several business pages already. In an effort to keep up with the ever changing internet and social media network, we've started re-designing our Facebook page, and plan to launch the new look after we get all the bugs worked out. We embrace the change, and while it is sometimes hard to train our brains to look for elements of Facebook in new places, we genuinely like the new layout.

Cover Photo

We've done some research into the new layout, and here's some helpful info:

Facebook states in the FAQ section that "Cover photos are 851 pixels wide and 315 pixels tall." You can upload an image smaller than that, but it will get stretched, and start to look pixelated. The image does have to be a minimum of 399 pixels wide.

In researching the size of the cover photo, we stumbled upon some guidelines that Facebook requires:

Cover images must be at least 399 pixels wide and may not contain:

  • Price or purchase information, such as "40% off" or "Download it at our website"
  • Contact information, such as web address, email, mailing address or other information intended for your Page's About section
  • References to user interface elements, such as Like or Share, or any other Facebook site features
  • Calls to action, such as "Get it now" or "Tell your friends"

These restrictions surprised us. We've already seen Business Pages violating these rules. We would guess that 90% of the business pages we've seen have their website listed in their cover page. It also wouldn't be a shock if we saw discounts listed in the cover pages soon either. Why did Facebook choose to add these restrictions? In the old layout, business' would list their info/discounts in the profile image that showed up in the top left sidebar. Will Facebook keep tabs on these guidelines? I wonder how many business' even read these guidlines?

For now, as we work on designing a new cover page for our Facebook business page, we'll keep these regulations in mind, and follow the rules.

Landing Page

Most business have integrated a landing page into their Facebook page. This is usually an advertisement asking for a "like," or more info about their business. Then you can check out their wall or other Facebook apps from that page. With the new timeline, Facebook has restricted the landing page. Here is what their FAQ said:

For Pages with timelines, people will always see the timeline view of your Page when they visit it. Views and apps are now easy to find right below your Page's cover. You can't change the default landing view to another view or app, but you can link people directly to a particular view or app on your Page.

Their work around suggestion is by using a new featured called Pinning. They said, "You can draw attention to a custom app by pinning a post about it to the top of your Page." While pinning sounds like a Pinterest term, it's slightly different. Basically by marking a past post you "pin it." The post will then be at the top of your wall until you "un-pin" this post.

We're interested to know your thoughts on the restrictions to the Cover Photo & the Landing Page. Leave a comment and let us know what you think.

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