Facebook · SEO 101

4 Reasons to Convert Your Facebook Business Profile into a Page

Have you ever gotten a Facebook friend request from something other than a person?  I have… several times… recently.  There are countless businesses operating in Facebook as user profiles rather than pages.  In the early days, those enterprising business owners that could see serious potential in Facebook had no option but to launch a profile for their business.  Over the years the connections have brought success, so there is little motivation to change a good thing.  Lots of small business owners have only had time and energy to learn their way around a profile, so they stick with what they know and understand when it comes to their Facebook presence.  Whatever the reason may have been to launch a business profile, there are 4 very huge reasons to make the switch to a business page.

Reason #1: You are in violation of the Facebook user agreement and run the risk of losing access to all of your hard work.

Here it is as stated on the Facebook Help page:

Maintaining a personal account for anything other than an individual person is a violation of Facebook’s Statement of Rights and Responsibilities. If you don’t convert your noncompliant account to a Page, you risk permanently losing access to the account and all of its content.

Exact wording from the Statement of Rights and Responsibilities:

Registration and Account Security

Facebook users provide their real names and information, and we need your help to keep it that way. Here are some commitments you make to us relating to registering and maintaining the security of your account:

  • You will not provide any false personal information on Facebook, or create an account for anyone other than yourself without permission.
  • You will not create more than one personal account.
  • If we disable your account, you will not create another one without our permission.
  • You will not use your personal timeline primarily for your own commercial gain, and will use a Facebook Page for such purposes.
  • You will not transfer your account (including any Page or application you administer) to anyone without first getting our written permission.
  • If you select a username or similar identifier for your account or Page, we reserve the right to remove or reclaim it if we believe it is appropriate (such as when a trademark owner complains about a username that does not closely relate to a user’s actual name).

 

Facebook does have a way to convert a profile to a page, enabling you to keep your user name and connections and not start again from scratch.  If this first reason is enough for you, scroll down to the bottom of the post for all the links and info you need to start converting to a business page.

Reason #2: You have no way of tracking your effectiveness on a profile.

How many people like your business is only the beginning.  To get the most out of the time and effort you put into Facebook, you need to be able to determine the makeup of your fan base, their consumption habits, and how well your message propagates beyond the people you are directly connected to.  Since Pages are designed for business use, they come with tons of data not available to a user profile.  The page “Insights” provide up to date information about what kind of interaction and reach each post on the page timeline generated.  Insights will break down your fan base by gender, age, location, and how they came to land on your page.  This kind of data enables you to stop shooting in the dark and serve up content that keeps your business connections buzzing.

FB Page Demographics 637x565 4 Reasons to Convert Your Facebook Business Profile into a Page

 

 Reason #3: Your profile has no access to advertising and promotion.

Facebook’s billion users is a huge draw for any business looking to expand their customer base.  But reaching the right people at the right time is tricky.  A user profile is designed for personal one on one relationships and was never intended to reach large groups of people.  The most powerful tool offered by Facebook for reaching it’s vast user base is advertising and promotion.  That tool is only available to business pages.  If you want to reach Facebook users that you do not already have some connection to, you need to break free of the profile and get access to the business promotional tools.

 Reason #4: You will miss out on Graph Search opportunities.

Facebook search will fundamentally change the way users navigate the topics and connections that interest them most.  Soon users will be able to search for restaurants their friends like.  But if you are interacting with your Facebook connections as a “friend” with a user profile rather than a restaurant with a business page, you could wind up pointing your friends to other restaurants rather than their friends pointing them back to your business.  So long as you operate you business on Facebook as a user profile, your business will be defined by search as a friend.  In order for new people to discover your business via Graph Search, you need your business on a page that people can “like.”

So, how do you convert your profile to a business page?

Here is the basic info from Facebook Help:

When you convert your personal account to a Facebook Page, we’ll transfer your current profile picture and add all your friends and subscribers as people who like your Page. Your account’s username will become the username for your Page, and the name associated with your personal account will become your Page’s name. If you want your Page to have a different name, consider creating a new one.

No other content will be carried over to your new Page, so be sure to save any important content before beginning the conversion:

  1. Download your timeline information. You can download a file that contains all of your sent and received messages and all of the photos and videos you’ve uploaded to Facebook.
  2. Appoint a new group admin to any groups you manage. You’ll be unable to manage groups once the conversion begins.

When you’re ready, start converting your personal account to a Facebook Page.

 4 Reasons to Convert Your Facebook Business Profile into a Page
Michelle is the co-host of the popular Social Media discussion group #SocialChat, blogger, and Social Media Advocate/Consultant +Michelle Stinson Ross
 4 Reasons to Convert Your Facebook Business Profile into a Page
 4 Reasons to Convert Your Facebook Business Profile into a Page

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11 thoughts on “4 Reasons to Convert Your Facebook Business Profile into a Page

  1. Hi Michelle, I have created a business page 2 years ago but at that time, opted to use Profile page to promote my website. Now I have decided to switch to business page which is to do some updates and publish it. Is publishing it going to automatically disable my Profile page? I am not sure how it works as right now I can switch between my Profile page (active) to my business page (not publish yet). I would like to keep both. Would appreciate your feedback. Thanks.

  2. I have countless problems having posts viewed on my page if I have included a photo? Please help. Tracey

  3. I have a question, if you can help me.

    If I convert my Timeline in a Page, what happens to the pages I created with my personal account? If I add new admins and then make the conversion the page I created will still be there or it just disappear because the owner doesn’t exist anymore?

    Thanks in advance.

    1. Hi, I think you better don’t convert your Personal profile to Business page as there are certain features you cannot do on Business page, eg. you cannot post more than 1 image, you have to create an album. Also you cannot add friends like in Personal profile. Now I also have a problem in sharing what I have posted on my Business page to friends or post on my Personal profile. I have to go to my Personal profile and click my Business Page to share whatever I posted.

      My advice, keep both and switch between Personal and Business. Hope this helps, cheers, Wendy

  4. Hi Tracey, I sincerely hope you can help me. I am so confused on what is a page and what is a profile. I have a personal facebook (page or profile? I do not know) that I started years ago. However, I wanted to create a page? for my business and hobby. I tried logging on and creating a couple under the business and hobby name but I couldn’t. I had to log on to my personal account and create a page attached to that one, which does not make sense to me. Now that I have the following additional pages or profiles? — not sure what they are, people cannot even LIKE my page or become a FRIEND on my page. I really do not understand why, it don’t make sense. Here are the additional pages or profiles that I have and want you to check to see what they are: My Dog My Friend Journal, and Brazile Enterprises. Could you please tell me if these are pages or profiles and why I cannot get people to LIKE these pages, as there is no LIKE button that appear, nor is there a search bar that appears. Please help!!!!!!!!!!!

    1. Hi Barbara, both your business pages seem to have no problem with the Like feature but as for friends, I really do not know how it works too. It seem like Michelle is not around to answer our questions. Let’s just help each other here if we know of anything new to share :-)

  5. TO MICHELLE STINSON ROSS: In my recent post I called you by the name of Stacey, I am sorry, I meant to address my post to you, Michelle Stinson Ross. Thank you.

  6. Hi all, I am relatively new to the facebook phenomena. I have a personal account with my name, I set up a Business page with my business name and can switch between both. Grand so far. I posted two items of the page to get me started.

    But when I asked my colleague to search the business page using their personal account, they could not find it on facebook !. Any ideas where I went wrong or how I could rectify. Is there a time limit before the business page is activated (all this done within the last 20hrs or so.

  7. Hi all,

    The company that I work for has recently changed their name. They had a personal profile under their last name which I have recently converted to a page. I would like to change the name of the Organization on the page but I can not do it unless I have fewer than 200 likes. When I converted the profile to a page there was 700+ friends and when you turn your profile into a page, your “friends” convert into “likes”. I need to change the name of the organization so I started removing “likes” but I do not have access to all of them and I can not view them like I would on my personal profile. Whats strange is that if I go into one of the peoples profiles that “like” my page I can view our “mutual friends” and I thought (following the steps of how to unfriend) I would be able to remove the likes that way. I was wrong, even when I unfriend them the number of “likes” on my page remains the same? Confused yet….me too! If anyone can help me I would greatly appreciate it.

  8. Hi,

    I have a facebook profile page set up with over 300 friends, if I convert this to a “page” which has likes rather than friends, what happens to all the friends?
    I was hoping to convert the personal profile to the group and somehow keep the connections I have made.
    Any help on this would be amazing

    Thanks in Advance.

  9. Hi,

    I have been trying to migrate our library’s personal profile into a Page. (I have read all the warnings and downloaded a copy of everything on the profile etc etc.) However, every link I find on-line, including the one on facebook, just brings you to the page to create a new Page. I went ahead and went through all the steps in case I was missing something, but I did indeed end up creating a whole new page at the end (which I deleted). Has facebook gotten rid of the migration function (as of late Sept 2013)?

    Thanks for any insight on this! I haven’t found anything on-line about this.