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Default Landing Tabs Back – Facebook Apologizes

NEWSFLASH: After yesterday’s disappointing news that Facebook Fan Page Admins could no longer direct non-fans to a default custom landing tab unless they had a minimum of 10,000 fans… in less than 24 hours, Facebook has changed the new “rule” back again.

The same Facebook staffer who made the forum post yesterday updated the forum today with this post:


As of last night, we’ve removed the recently-added authentication requirement for setting custom landing tabs on Pages. The requirement was instituted as part of a Pages quality initiative, and we apologize for the inconvenience this caused to our developer and business community. We are re-investigating the situation, and will not make any further changes without first giving our community standard notice and lead-time.

Thanks for all your feedback,
Matt Trainer

Facebook Developer Network Team

The motive behind this change – and back again – is unclear. But, it’s certainly clear that the ability to direct visitors to your Facebook fan page custom tab can have a direct payoff to the bottom line: wrote today about BrandGlue split testing the efficacy of a landing tab. They found the conversion rate to be 47% with a landing tab and around 23% without. That is a BIG difference!

Phew, at least the thousands of small businesses, developers, consultants and agencies can breathe a sigh of relief that this very important feature has been restored!

I just wonder how much influence Matt has to adhere to “[we] will not make any further changes without first giving our community standard notice and lead-time.” What is standard notice and lead-time?! 😉

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Mari Smith

Often referred to as “the Queen of Facebook,” Mari Smith is widely known as the Premier Facebook Marketing Expert and a top Social Media Thought Leader. Forbes describes Mari as, “… the preeminent Facebook expert. Even Facebook asks for her help.” IBM named Mari as one of seven women that are shaping digital marketing. Mari is an in-demand keynote speaker, corporate social media strategist, dynamic live webcast host, and popular brand ambassador. She is coauthor of Facebook Marketing: An Hour A Day, and author of The New Relationship Marketing.

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  1. Shim on June 9, 2010 at 4:08 pm

    Thanks for all of the information, awesome blog by the way.

  2. Val Wilcox on May 25, 2010 at 6:37 am

    Thanks for the update on this. Facebook learned a little bit about their user base with that move, didn't they! At least they were willing to adjust and re-visit their decision.

    Have a great day,
    Val 🙂

  3. gwenmcgreen on May 25, 2010 at 3:47 am

    I don’t agree with you @Mark, because if consider the business scenario and the business world, what can we say? Nothing is certain except for constant changes. This move might be a benefit for the users now, but it may be a disadvantage tomorrow. So, yes, even when we are talking about “brilliant people” as you put it, we are also talking about handling the business world which is a changing one.

  4. Mike on May 23, 2010 at 6:40 am

    The Facebook developer community is full of brilliant people and wish they would have talked to use prior to implementing this rule.

    I am all for restrictions on FBML tabs in fan pages, but they way they went about it was all wrong. It is the scammers who will have 10k+ fans and meet the requirements, the ones they are trying to get rid of.

    I proposed to Facebook that in order to have your tab set as a landing page it needs to be approved just like getting any application approved. They also need to make reporting fan pages easier. This shouldnt concern any legitimate business with a company fan page.

  5. Terri Zwierzynski on May 22, 2010 at 10:23 am

    To be perfectly honest…this just makes me want to spend even LESS time/effort on my Facebook business (fan) page. (Reminds me of trying to keep up with SEO “rules” — I'd rather just create good content that users like and let the SEO chips fall where they may.) I simply don't have time to keep up with their changes and jump through their hoops, especially when other social media channels are much more stable and user-friendly, and deliver good results. This is of course my opinion and I may change my mind later!

  6. Shelley on May 22, 2010 at 8:54 am

    thanks Mari! I was in the middle of delivering a webianr on FB Fan Pages when I saw this change….my presentation quality improved immediately! 🙂

  7. Michelle @ Following Your Joy on May 21, 2010 at 1:42 pm

    As always, I appreciate your timely, professional updates and insights that help set me (and so many others!) up for success with Facebook. Thank you, Mari!

  8. Travis Campbell on May 21, 2010 at 11:05 am

    Thanks, as always, Mari for keeping us up to date on these things. Nice to know Facebook is willing to listen to users.

  9. Allen Mireles on May 21, 2010 at 7:06 am

    Mari, what I found so helpful about your earlier post were your suggestions about how to work around the loss of the customized landing page. I think we would all do well to implement some of those ideas as a hedge against Facebook's next change in TOS for business pages.

    For many businesses participating in Facebook's authentication process is outside of budget yet they can still use Facebook effectively if they are creative and strategic. I appreciated your earlier post and certainly am pleased to hear that–for the moment–Facebook is holding off on removing the customized landing page option.

    Thanks. 🙂

  10. FaceItPages on May 20, 2010 at 1:50 pm

    Yes, read that post from this morning as well… great to hear the news spreading fast on this. Whether this is a temporary pullback or not, it's nice to see FB respond so swiftly to the upset from its users. Agree with Kim (above) that if they decide to reinstate this restriction, there should be a more realistic and practical way for small biz to “authenticate”.

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