Facebook fan and business pages have always had the better layout and features for brands to get their audience following them all in one spot, and to advertise their services with custom tabs. But a just when we thought things were ‘okay’ (never great), a Facebook pages redesign is on the way that will pretty much take the advantages of having a business page away, replacing them with a closer relation to personal profiles, and of course, much more “in your face” sections related to purchasing ads.

With this redesign, which you can see with the photo below, a “streamlined look” (Facebook’s words, not mine) is being rolled out for brands around the US, and around the world. Page owners will not have a choice as to whether they want to use this layout, obviously, as Facebook sees lots of advantages to having a consistent look and experience throughout the site.

facebook pages redesign

The problem with this redesign though, is that it doesn’t really do anything for brands at all. While it will present “about us” type information more clearly and out in the open, it removes a lot of core functionality that brands rely on most – specifically, the use of custom tabs.

Custom tabs aren’t necessarily “gone” however. They’re simply hidden under the “more” button in the cover image (the little button next to the link button there). So basically… they’re gone. Why would Facebook hide these tabs? What possible reason to they have to remove custom functionality that was 1/2 the reason I wanted a public page in the first place? Let’s take a look at what you’re missing out on with this redesign:

Messaging Pages?

It appears as though the ability to submit direct messages to pages will be disappearing with this new update. If it is present, it’s within that stupid “more” button, which is the same as saying it’s “hidden,” which in turn is the same as saying it’s worthless. If your followers have direct questions for you, they’re just going to have to leave them out in the open on the page timeline aren’t they? Maybe it involves their account, or it’s a quick conversation about their account… too bad.

Custom Tabs Hidden

It’s assumed that the custom tabs you’ve created for your website will now be featured in that stupid “more” button as well, which (just like the messaging option) pretty much makes it worthless to have. Brands have always embraced the ability to hold contests, offer promotional content with email lists, and many other custom functions and apps within tabs under their cover art. – The primary usage of these tabs almost always includes leaving Facebook.com to travel to someplace off-site. That created an opportunity for more traffic to a brands website, more conversations, and a better experience for customers. However, by bringing people away from Facebook, it also created less ad-impressions for Facebook most likely…. which, as you can imagine, is the motivation behind everything Facebook does since going public.

So this basically brings us to the main reason why they are doing this:

build audience with Facebook redesigned

Bringing more focus to some key pieces of information for the purpose of….

To sell more ads

Oh yes, of course. It will help their ad sales. 

How will it help? Let’s look at the primary focus of this redesign, and look at the core functionality that they are removing compared to the functionality and experience they are adding for the admins of pages. They are specifically highlighting key areas here that matter for admins, such as page likes, reach, and your insights panel (which is larger and easier to see now). Great information to present… but at the same time, Facebook has dramatically limited a page’s ability to reach the audience they already have (it’s estimated your fan page only reaches 5% of your fan-base anyways), and by showing you how poorly your page is reaching people directly below the total number of people that like your page… they can show you “success” by having you PAY THEM for more reach.

That photo above is total bullshit, make no mistake. You will NEVER see organic reach that exceeds your number of page likes by that great of margin. 90% of pages will see a number 1/20th the size of their number of likes. Never having a prayer of getting reach that’s on par with likes, unless they pay hundreds of dollars promoting their posts.

facebook wants to sell more ads

Look how you’re doing compared to these other popular pages! Quick, BUY MORE LIKES HERE!

On top of that, they’re making it easier to compare how you’re doing with other pages you’re following, giving you more information so that you can better “compete” with those other pages (hopefully by paying for your posts to reach more people than theirs). This redesign has nothing to do with user experience, neither for administrators nor regular users. It’s all about ads.

For more information on how terrible it is to try making a buzz around a Facebook page now, watch this awesome video by Veritasium, showing you exactly what’s wrong with Facebook.

This fan page redesign only increases the problem with this network – this redesign makes no progress to remedy it. Facebook is going to die people… it’s only a matter of time. Let’s hope it’s sooner rather than later, I say. This network was awesome until they went public.

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