Facebook like gate is what every business should have on their facebook tabs. Doing online business is changing dramatically and more and more businesses are focusing on utilizing facebook pages to increase exposure and also revenue in the process. Just like a profile page, facebook allows users to create and share facebook pages to promote their interests. But the average fb user is more likely to be content with just a personal profile, whilst companies of all sizes realize the potentials of facebook pages.
As you may already know FBML is deprecating. iFrame is the new way of adding facebook tabs hosted on your own servers. This means that all corresponding files to the tab must be hosted away from facebook. This change also means that you can literally add any type content to the tabs. Isn’t it just great?
Now then I assume you already have a facebook page on which you are an admin. If you don’t, create one now.
What is a facebook tab?
All subpages you add to your main facebook page are called tabs. You must create a facebook app in order to add a tab to the page. Technically it has to be one app per tab, but if you really want to include multiple tabs, then you must include multiple frames for each tab and bundle it as a single webpage so it still stands as a single tab – see Live Demo.
1. Create a facebook app dedicated to the tab you are about to add
Login to your facebook account and go to developers.facebook.com. Click on the ‘Apps’ menu and click ‘Create New App.’
Give your app a ‘display name’ (this is the name displayed to the users) and the app namespace (to be used with Open Graph API – no spaces and the name string must be available).
In the app settings, add the following;
- App Domain – Your domain (e.g. mydomain.com)
- ‘Website’ section – Site URL (e.g. hxxp://www.mydomain.com)
- ‘App on facebook’ section – Canvas URL (e.g. hxxp://www.mydomain.com/facebook/) tip – Canvas URL is a folder where all your tab files will reside and hence it ends with a forward slash.
- ‘App on facebook’ section – Secure Canvas URL (same as above but replacing https instead of http) tip – You need to have an SSL certificate on your domain for this to work. If you don’t have a SSL certificate then leave this field blank. But since October 2011, secure canvas URL is a requirement for all facebook apps. Facebook also provides support with cloud hosting services such as Heroku, which solves the secure URL issue. Read more here.
- ‘Page Tab’ section – Page Tab URL (e.g. hxxp://www.mydomain.com/facebook/index.html or /index.php). This is the actual tab page.
- ‘Page Tab’ section – Secure Page Tab URL (Same as the ‘Secure Canvas URL’ description above…)
- Hit save and hopefully you should only get a couple of warnings in case you ignored the secure URLs. If any error message flashes, then edit the fields accordingly and save again.
2. Prepare the tab content
Use your favorite html editor to create your tab page. Make sure the maximum total page width is 500px to avoid horizontal scroll bars appearing on the tab. I usually add the style “width:500px;” to the body tag so what ever is added stays within that width.
Styling and creating the page tab is beyond the scope of this post. If you are not familiar with html or CSS, then find somebody else to do it for you in places like freelancer or elance. Alternatively, just add a graphic or an infographic image as content (simple, efficient and no disadvantages…).
3. Upload files to the webserver
Create a sub folder in your root domain folder and name it with the name specified at the Canvas URL setting (in our example its “facebook”). Upload all your tab content to the folder.
Now edit the following URL with your App details (replace YOUR_APP_ID with your App id and YOUR_URL with your App’s canvas page URL) and visit the URL in order to add your iframe tab to your existing facebook page:
Select your preferred page from the dropdown box and click on ‘Add Page Tab’. Now you have successfully added an iFrame page tab to your facebook page. Now go to your facebook page and you will notice a new navigational menu item has been added to your facebook page which is completely of custom content created by you.
4. iFrame tab is added… Now what?
Adding a custom iFrame tab is just the beginning of exploring what benefits you can actually derive from your facebook page in terms of expanding your business, perhaps in a marketing point of view.
Here are few things to consider:
- Add ‘like gate’ and serve exclusive content to members or ‘likers’ in fb terminology.
- Add contact us form or subscription forms to increase engagement with the page.
- Develop a facebook App which gathers permission of its users to post to their profile timeline and promote it with a separate iFrame tab. Remember your App should compensate the users with some valuable experience if you expect this to increase users exponentially.
Now go and add more engaging iFrame tabs and create more beautiful facebook pages. Always remember to address your potential likers as you would address a group of young, intelligent people directly. Most of all have fun yourself and your iFrame tabs and facebook pages will become really appealing and fun, automatically.