Transcript: Ask Amy: “What’s new with the Facebook Page Timeline layout?”

June 19, 2014

AMY PORTERFIELD: Hey there, Amy Porterfield here and welcome to another edition of the online marketing made easy podcast. I am delighted you are here and this is the second Ask Amy episode so far. I just kicked off a new feature where every other week I will be answering questions that you send in. If you have a question, I want to hear from you. All you need to do is go to and you can record your message there and I just might choose yours for the next one. I'd love to hear from you. 

Today our question comes from Gina so why don't we just go ahead and play it and then I'll dive in. 

Gina: Hi Amy, this is Gina over at I'm a huge fan of your podcast and your content. I love that you're taking Q&A right now. My question is I've noticed that the Facebook layout has changed and things have moved around a little bit. Is there anything I need to know about this new layout to help me maximize my impact and exposure on Facebook? Thanks so much for taking my question and  I  look forward to hearing your answer . 

Amy: Thank you Gina so much for the nice message, I really appreciate it. This is a great question, very timely and that's why I chose it for today. 

So I thought, why don't I just give you a breakdown about this new Facebook page layout so you know what to look out for and you know how to actually optimize the new layout. 

You might not have the new layout just yet. I recently got it so if you go to you will see the new layout there. 

It's not a huge change and it's not that big of a deal but it is important for you to know what to look for. There's one feature that I think is super cool and I'm going to tell you about that as well. 

Let's start from the top and I'll break it down for you. 

In this new layout that everyone will eventually get, so it's important that everyone kind of pays attention here, in the new layout if we start from the top you actually will see new navigation across the top. You'll see new navigation, which will  include Activity, Insights and Settings. That's not very new but that's where it's located. 

What's kind of cool is to the right of your cover photo as an admin you're going to see some stats for that week. So for the current week you'll see your new page likes, overall post reach, unread notifications and unread messages if you've deployed messages on your Facebook page. 

I don't have the Private Message button, which you could find in Settings. I don't have that because I didn't want one more place for me to manage communication, because it gets a little messy when you're getting tons of emails here and then you're getting messages inside Facebook here and then private messages there. It just kind of got out of control, so I've turned mine off, but if you're a smaller business and maybe you have a business where people don't want to necessarily publicly ask you the question but they might have questions, turning on the message button on your Facebook page is a great idea. Again go in to Settings and you'll see that. 

What's great about these stats to the right is that if you are actually tracking your activity on Facebook, just opening up an Excel spreadsheet or a Google doc or whatever and every week charting those numbers, you'll see if you're getting better or worse or whatever it might be, especially in terms of the overall post reach, which I think it an interesting number. That includes clicks, shares, comments and likes on each of your posts. 

Let's jump back up – the cover photo, you know the big photo across the top, the only thing that's changing with that is that Facebook is now putting your Facebook page name over the cover photo to right of your profile photo. So you have your big cover photo, then you have your profile photo right there in the left corner. Right next to that you're going to see your page name. 

I don't love this because it blends into our design of our cover photos, so it's something to be mindful of. You never want a cover photo where some kind of text from Facebook is covering up your text that you have on your cover photo. It just looks sloppy. So be careful to not actually put any text or graphics in that area. You'll see it on my Facebook page where they've put my page name. 

Working your way down, underneath the cover photo you're going to see some tabs. I'm going to talk about those tabs in just a moment but if you work your way down just a little bit more, if you schedule posts directly from your Facebook page, you're actually now going to see this really cool note at the top, kind of a notification that says ‘Scheduled Post' and then it tells you when your next scheduled post is supposed to come out. 

We schedule our posts directly on our Facebook page. Because of that now we know quickly where to get to those scheduled posts, you can look at them and edit them and all that good stuff, but you also know when the next one's going to come out. I love that feature. Right there below the cover photo, below the tabs, you'll see an actual notification there. 

Let's talk about the two columns on your Facebook page because now it's pretty much broken up into two columns. 

The column to the right are your Facebook posts. When you post on Facebook, you're going to see it now in just one column, which I love, just one column and it's all your Facebook posts and your interaction with your fans. The left column is going to be all the information about your business. If you're a local business, in that left column you can actually display your map, your hours of business, phone number, website URL, all that good stuff that you need there. Plus it will show the photos and videos that you've posted on your page. Now that's all in the left column. 

If you're a business that does business primarily online, then what you're going to see are your Facebook fan likes, information about your business like your website and you can actually put in a little note in the About section, apps – if you have any Facebook apps you'll actually see them in the left column as well as across the top, photos, videos, any posts to your page that are not posts from you will actually be in the left column as well. 

Just to back up a little bit, in that left column you're going to have a little area if you're not a local business to write a little blurb. I used to teach in the old layout to add a little blurb in there about your website and then the URL to your website so people can click there and go directly to your website, but now it's changed a little bit. Here's what I suggest to get more strategic on your Facebook page: 

In that little ‘About' section in your left column of the new layout, I want you to put a little blurb about a giveaway you have if you are capturing email addresses with a lead magnet, so a free e-book, a cheat sheet, a video series, whatever might be. Tell people 

what it is and then include a link to it because below that you'll then have a link directly to your website. Now you're going to get two links directly on your Facebook page. 

Many years ago when I worked on Tony Robbins' Facebook page, we had Gary Vaynerchuk actually review it. Tony got Gary to review our new Facebook page and the only feedback Gary gave at the time was to make sure you have a URL in that About section because it's the only place on your Facebook page that is directly linkable all the time, it shows up all the time, to your website. That still stands and this is 5/6 years later. In that About section, directly on your Facebook page on the Timeline, they don't have to click to go back into the About section, if you click ‘About' you can go into the section where there's tons of information about your business. 

I encourage you to put a lot of information in there, but if you're just looking at your Facebook page on the Timeline then you will see a link to your website. You definitely want that but in that little blurb that you can add to the top, make sure to include a URL to a free giveaway, so now you're not only driving traffic to your website but if people are interested you're also getting them to sign up for your email list, really important. 

Let's talk about those tabs, because there's some confusion there around how do the tabs work and are they still valuable? That's a question I keep getting asked. Should I still use a tab? Are they valuable? I want to talk about that a bit. 

The tabs are like those boxes on our old layout, the boxes across the top. You click on one and it takes you inside, kind of like a mini webpage inside of Facebook. Now all of your tabs are going to be found in the left column but then you actually have the opportunity to change around some of the tabs at the top. You don't get to have all of your tabs displaying on the top but if you go right underneath your cover photo, you will actually see a tab that says ‘More', click on that tab, you'll see a drop down, then click on ‘Manage Tabs' and you'll see which ones they're allowing you to move around. 

If you have a bunch of apps, you'll actually see an app as a tab that you can add to the top there. Once you get in there and see how it works you'll totally understand it. Apps and tabs are kind of like the same thing, just so you know, it gets a little confusing. 

Anyway, you can definitely move those around but here's the deal, these tabs or these apps, whatever you want to call them, they do not convert well. They do convert well if you're using Facebook ads and driving traffic directly to them but if you're not using Facebook ads, I personally feel that these tabs are a waste of time. The reason being is 

that most people never go to your Facebook page. They're likely seeing the majority of your posts in their News Feed, if we're lucky enough to get in their News Feed because as we know, engagement is down and it's even hard to get in the News Feed these days. That is why I teach Facebook advertising and using Facebook as a lead generating tool, because once you engage with your Facebook fans and move them to your email list, you have more control over the message inside an email than you do on Facebook. 

I still see Facebook as extremely valuable and of course I use it daily but I don't really pay attention to those apps, unless I create one and then drive traffic to it daily with Facebook ads. So that hasn't changed, I've been saying that for a while and I firmly believe that. No matter that Facebook changed the layout, to me it still doesn't matter because I don't think people found them even in the old layout. Just something to think about, you want to definitely drive traffic to those apps if you're going to use them. 

Let's talk briefly about one of the coolest features about the new layout. That is something inside of Insights called Pages to Watch. Here's the deal, the Pages to Watch feature provides a great opportunity to see what's working for other pages, specifically pages that also attract your ideal customer, which will give you some great ideas about what you can do to increase the engagement on your own page. 

Here's how it works and what you can do to use this change to your advantage. 

With this new layout you can actually monitor other pages and see which posts from the previous week were actually more engaging than others. This is great intel and up until this point it was really tough to see what was actually working on other Facebook pages, but now Facebook is literally giving you the stats and telling you what's working. So a quick tip for you is to make a point of actually going in your Insights every week, monitoring these other pages and really looking into which posts are most engaging for them and then model something like that. If they're asking a great question, maybe you can think of a similar type question for your audience to see if you actually get a rise in engagement as well. 

You can monitor their page likes, you can monitor their engagement. So to get specific on this, on the Overview tab inside your Facebook page Insights, if you scroll down you'll actually see something that says Pages to Watch and you can actually add pages that you want to watch. If you go to my show notes I show you some image examples of this, so will actually show you exactly how to do it. 

When you're inside Insights in Overview, you can actually choose your pages you want to watch. Inside Insights on the Post tab, once you've added the pages you can see which posts from the previous week were most engaging on those pages. So there's two places to look inside of Insights. 

One thing you want to be aware of is that if you add a page to Insights to watch that page, the admin of that Facebook page will get a notification that their page has been added but they won't know who added it. So it's really not a big deal that they are alerted to that. It's just interesting is a page admin to watch how many people are adding your page to their Facebook pages to watch. Just something to know about, you should get it in your notifications on your Facebook page if someone added you as a page to watch. 

One more thing all about the Facebook page change in general, when you do accept to change the design – because you'll get a notification, when you go on to Facebook one day you'll see a pop up that will say “You have the new layout, congratulations, click here to start using it and showing the new layout to your fans – so you can bypass that and not show it but it says on a certain date it will just go into effect. So I would just say OK show it, because it's going to be forced on everybody soon. 

I do personally really like the new layout. I hated that our posts were in those two columns, I thought that was confusing, so now just one column, really  easy  to navigate. 

When you do accept the changes, go back into your settings for your Facebook page and just make sure that you are happy with all the settings. If you hid some post, sometimes the change will actually take those hidden posts and start posting them. I've heard that from other people. So just look over your page, look over the posts, make sure everything looks the way you want it to look, go into your settings, make sure that looks how you want it to look as well and then you're good to go. 

So just a quick overview of the new layout, nothing earth shattering but it's always good to know, especially because we're on Facebook so much, you just want your page to look professional and you want the most important information to be front and centered. 

You've got new stats to the right of your cover photo and inside Insights you have the Pages to Watch as well, so that new information. 

I talked about the cover photo and how now the name of our page is to the right of our profile photo on our cover photo, which is kind of weird. So just go look at your cover photo and make sure that your page name now is not covering up something on your cover photo. If it is, I do think it's worth changing so it looks really good. 

Then working your way down, you now have the right column with all your posts, the left column with all your business information and your apps look a little bit different. You can play around with them but again if I can give you any advice, the apps aren't that important unless you're going to be using Facebook ads. 

If you're interested in Facebook ads I recently did a podcast, number 29 where I talked about Facebook ad targeting because there's a lot of really cool things you can do with targeting your ads. If you want some information about that and haven't listened to number 29 yet, you might want to jump back and go check out that one as well. 

So there you have it! That is your new Facebook page layout. 

Some cool things going on, I really love that Pages to Watch feature. And I just want to say thank you so much to Gina, I really appreciate the question. If you have any questions I want to hear from you. You can ask questions about online marketing, webinars, product creation, Facebook, Pinterest, YouTube, you name it, I will likely have the answer for you and if I don't I'll do the research to get it for you. You can also ask about how I built my business and mindset around that and going from the shift of corporate to online marketing. I know all of that is really important to those building a business as well. No questions off-limits, please definitely send them in, go to and you can record your message there. 

Until next time, make it a great week. Take care. 

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