Optimizing your Facebook page makes the page available to Facebook’s entire user base as well as that of general search engines, helping you to attract prospective customers you otherwise may not have had access to.
It is worth noting that Facebook pages that are optimized specifically for search engines tend to rank pretty well on the major search engine result pages.
Following are a set of tactics and strategies for optimizing your Facebook page so that you are easily found on Facebook and the search engines. These strategies apply for any business including a one-man business, a band, an online store or a global organization.
Choose the right name for your Page.
This is one of the most important steps when it comes to optimizing your Facebook page for the search engines. Your page name is effectively your page’s title, and it will appear on the search engine result pages with the prominence of an <h1> headline. Consequently, you should name it something that is short, meaningful and relevant to your business.
Having an obscure name means that it is less likely to be found by searchers on Facebook and the search engines. Note that you cannot change a Page name after it has acquired more than 100 likes.
Although your page title can be up to 75 characters, it is important to keep in mind the standard length of SEO page titles (70 characters). If the name is too long and specific, people are less likely to want to “like” your page.
Furthermore, whenever you comment as your page, or people tag your page, your entire name will come up, so if your page name is “Your Brand – Keyword, Keyword, and Keywords” people will be less likely to want to engage with you as they will view you as a spammer.
Typically, naming the page after your business name would be a good option for branding purposes because the name authentically represents your business and is how most people will search for your company on Facebook. It will also help maintain a consistent identity of your brand, and search engines can associate your Facebook page with your business.
However, if you have a name like Abiye’s Pizza, you’re going to be buried down in the search results. However, adding a location to your name such as Abiye’s Pizza, London or Abiye’s Pizza, Crouch End will bump you to the top of the search results.
Avoid keyword stuffing.
Resist the temptation to stuff your Facebook title with high value generic keywords to avoid being penalized by Google for over-optimization. If your Page is found to be over-optimized, it could affect the search ranking of the website it is connected to. Furthermore, stuffing your title with keywords will also lead to a penalty from Facebook. The page will also seem like spam to users, so people will be far less likely to engage with it.
Examples of keyword stuffed Facebook page names:
- “Lucy’s Wedding Dresses – Wedding Dresses & Wedding Gowns. Cheap Bridal Shop”
- “Joe’s Plumbing – Central Heating, Leaking Taps, Boiler Installation.”
- “Bob’s Travel Agency: London, Paris, New York – Hotels, Flights & more.”
It is also important to be very specific when naming your Facebook Page. Facebook intends for pages to authentically represent the identities of businesses, brands, personalities, etc.
If you select a generic name such as Travel, Design, Training, etc., you run the risk of being penalized by Facebook, effectively limiting your ability to engage with your target audience. It is important to bear in mind that Facebook has revoked priviledges from pages with generic titles in the past.
Examples of great Facebook titles include:
- “Vanessa Lawson – Interior Designer”
- “Orchid Web Design”
- “Urban Cafe – London”
Once you have chosen your Facebook page name, stick to it. Google uses your Facebook Page Title as the SEO title, and changing the name of your page name will adversely affect the SEO ranking of your Facebook page on the search engine results page (SERP).
Here are a few things to bear in mind when naming your Facebook Page:
- Use proper, grammatically correct capitalization and avoid excessive punctuation, capitalization or all capitals.
- If available, your business name should be your Page name, especially if you’re branding your business on Facebook.
- Avoid using symbols in your Page name.
- Include your brand and generic keywords if branding your product
Quick Tip: The first word in your fan page title is given the most weighting by Google’s search algorithms.
Choose a Vanity URL (or Username)
The next step in personalizing your business page is to create a custom vanity URL (Facebook calls it a ”username“). By default, your Facebook Page will get a randomly assigned number and URL, like facebook.com/pages/yourbusiness/123456789.
However, Facebook provides the ability to create a unique URL (or username) for the page. It is important that your page URL reflects an aspect of your business, because URLs are heavily weighted by search engines.
As you’re deciding on your username, consider the following requirements from Facebook:
- Usernames can only include alphanumeric characters (A-Z, 0-9) or a period (.).
- You can only have one username per page.
- Usernames are not transferrable or editable (so think carefully about your username choice!).
- Generic words such as “flowers” or “pizza” are not acceptable.
- If your trademarked name has already been taken, you can notify Facebook of this intellectual property infringement.
- Choose a username that authentically represents your business or brand and is closely related to the name of your page, e.g. www.facebook.com/interiordecorator or www.facebook.com/seotrainer.
A photo is a primary content type that’s displayed in Graph Search results. Tag every photo with your Page name and any location that’s associated with the photo. This is similar to optimizing an image for the search engines.
Pay attention to photo descriptions. Include appropriate keywords in the description of each photo you post to your Page. For example, if you’re an adoption shelter posting pictures of the shelter animals, a photo of a dog should have the breed of dog and “for adoption” in the description.
Optimizing the Info Tab
Facebook creates an “Info” tab for every Facebook page that has fields containing important descriptive metadata about the Page. Use this tab to include more important keywords, text and high priority links on your Page.
Google places higher importance on pages with specific information like your business’s phone number and address. So, pages that include this type of information can effectively increase your brand’s overall SEO.
At the top of the admin panel, click the Edit Page button and then click “Update info”. This step opens the Page dashboard:
These fields provide the opportunity to include keywords and links that will increase the content score of your Facebook Page for many types of Google searches.
- Address, City, State, and Zip code – These are important fields for local searches
- Company Overview, About, Mission, and Products – These are important fields for product searches
- Websites – This is a valuable opportunity to add direct links to your own websites or other relevant sites in your space
The specific fields present will vary according to the category you choose for your Page when you create it (business, brand, or public figure), so choose the category that best fits your needs.
Name and Start Type
This is where you can change the name of your page, which is not recommended for previously stated reasons. If you’ll be adding milestones with a past date, make the start date further back than that date.
Note that if you use the current day, month and year, you will be unable to add anything to the Page’s timeline from the past. You can also decide whether you want this first date type to be Born, Founded, Started, Open, Created or Launched.
This field is important for local businesses, and should only be used if you have actual hours when your place of business is open. Adding a physical address effectively makes your Facebook Page a “Places Page”. This adds a functionality whereby anyone can add a public recommendation.
The About Field
The keywords that you use to optimize your Facebook page are the words and phrases that the search engines spiders use to catalog, index, and find your page. You should include targeted keywords in your Page’s “About us” section and within posts or other pages you choose to add to your site.
Here is an example of how a search engine would index your page:
- SEO Title: Your Facebook Page name
- Meta Description: Facebook page name + the About section of your page
- H1: Your Facebook page name
The most important areas to optimize for your target keywords are:
- The About section
- Company Description
These areas are actually pulled from your fan page as SEO elements. Note that just like any website, over-optimizing any section of your Facebook page through the use of too many of your target keywords will make you susceptible to Google’s over-optimization penalty.
In addition to adding info on your About subpage, you can add a key, short description to highly visible real estate beneath the cover and profile images – highlighted below.
Keep the short description short and sweet, and add your website URL, hyperlinked. Otherwise, visitors have to click on ‘about’, and hunt for your website URL there. The short description is the best way to add an up front and clearly visible path to your website.
In order to get the most out of your Facebook page, you will want to optimize your business’s About page. New viewers will automatically look at the About page and if what they see is relevant to their needs, they might “like” your page.
The About Page
Make sure the About page is as complete and accurate as possible. Put as many details about your business in that location as you care to share with the public. The more complete your page, the more likely customers are to find the information they need.
Note that the first 78 characters are critical because what you have written will show up partially at your sidebar before visitors need to click ‘More’ to read the rest. Therefore, make sure you include the most important keywords that you would expect searchers to use to describe your business so they are displayed ahead of your message.
You can complete the About section with a 140 character description of your page so that your entire message displays in the search engine’s snippet. On the search engine results page, the About section is presented as the meta description of a regular web page.
The information you share in your About section will also help people find your page in search, particularly if you put keywords at the beginning of specific fields. Note that a well-written About section can have a significant influence on how many clicks you get on your search listing.