To start, I want to highlight why you should convert your personal profile to a business page. I’ve heard many small business owners argue in favor of the personal profiles (which they often call “friend page”) but I don’t think they see the big picture here.
First of all, if you don’t convert your profile, you are taking the chance of getting blocked and losing all your friends — Facebook does not allow business to have personal profiles. When the platform finds profiles that are being used in the wrong way, the owner loses the rights to the account. No one really knows how much or how fast Facebook acts, but why would you take the chance?
Also, if you have a personal profile instead of a business page, you are missing opportunities. Business Pages have many cool features that you can use to interact with your customers, and personal profiles don’t. One of the biggest complaints I hear from business owners is that you cannot invite people to your events anymore. But I don’t see that as a bad thing. Facebook (and social media in general) change so much, some old features, like the Events, lose their attractiveness. The whole “I saw that my friend is going to this event so I’m going to go too” is dead on Facebook, and users barely pay attention to it anymore. There are tons of other new things that are much more attractive now (you can promote your event by creating a nice Cover Picture, for example!). Also, don’t forget that in social media, anything you learn today will likely be of no use 6 months from now, and that is just the nature of the industry. So embrace the changes and use them in your favor.
The third and most important reason why you should convert your profile is because you don’t get data from your personal pages.
The Insights on business pages can really help you understand what attracts your customers, and it can help you turn Facebook into a great channel to promote your business.
So, how do I convert (or migrate) my personal profile to a business page? It is a simple process, but you really need to pay attention to what you are doing because you won’t be able to change some of the information later.
- Before starting the conversion, make sure the name and last name are the ones you want your business to be named on the business page. Facebook won’t let you change once you convert.
- Save all your pictures and any content you’d like to keep. Once you migrate, Facebook will delete everything. You will only be able to keep your profile photo and your friends (they will become fans). You can download all your data from Facebook by going to ACCOUNT SETTINGS, and then clicking on the link DOWNLOAD DATA on the bottom of your page. Then click on START MY ARCHIVE. Facebook will email you when the download is complete.
- When all your files are safe, log in on Facebook again and go to http://www.facebook.com/pages/create.php?migrate. Then choose which kind of business page category you are in: local business or place; company, organization or institution; brand or product; artist, band or public figure; entertainment, cause or community.
- Click on your category, and then fill out the small form (category, place, address and phone). Click on GET STARTED. Don’t forget to check the little box “I agree to FACEBOOK PAGES TERMS.”
- Next, a window will pop up and ask you to confirm the migration. In this step you will have one more opportunity to download all your data if you haven’t done it yet. Enter your password and then click on CONFIRM.
- Now Facebook will ask you to upload an image if you don’t have one yet. It’ll be your business page’s profile picture, so I recommend you put your logo as a means of identification for your clients. The picture should be 180 pixels by 180 pixels. Upload your picture and click on NEXT.
- Now it’s time to write a little bit more about your business and add some contact information. When you are done, click on SAVE INFO. If you don’t feel like doing it at this point, you can always SKIP it and complete all the info at a later time.
- You are done converting your page!!!! You are going to notice that the page looks empty and not much is going on with it yet—that is when you start exploring all the features Facebook offers!
To make sure your page looks nice and professional, check out my article “Facebook Timeline Design: How to make your page look nice” and learn all you need to have a great Facebook page.