The Internet is still abuzz with talk of Facebook’s Graph Search—and although some are skeptical about how the new tool will be used, that skepticism is countered by a growing realization that Facebook Graph Search has powerful potential for businesses.
Beyond the bells and whistles, the core of graph search is about helping people discover products and services on Facebook. And just as savvy SEO tactics help you become more visible in search engine results, focusing on your Facebook page’s visibility and engagement will likely result in increased appearances in graph search results.
Classify your business. If someone’s searching for your business category, you want to make sure you’re included in that classification. Go to Admin Panel > Edit Page > Update Info to verify (and change, if needed) your business classification.
Confirm details. Check to be sure your business address, phone number and hours of operation are correct and up-to-date and make sure you review this on a regular basis. This information is just as likely to appear in search results, and if you’re giving customers incorrect info, they’ll likely steer clear of your business and/or leave negative reviews.
Grow your audience. A larger, more engaged audience will help increase your page’s visibility—but don’t just add page likes for the heck of it. Instead, try experimenting with targeted ads that directly reach your intended audience. Promote your Facebook page on other outlets, too, such as on your website and physically in your business, so that people know where to find you. And more importantly, give them a reason to connect with you on Facebook. Offer them incentives for “liking” your brand (coupons, private sales, early access to events, etc.), don’t just expect to tell them that you’re on Facebook and they should make time in their busy days to like your brand. That’s not marketing, it’s just dumb.
Focus on content. Creating compelling, informative content is a must no matter which social platform you’re using—and Facebook is no exception. If you only have time to post sporadically, consider enlisting the help of someone else to oversee your page’s community management duties. The more engagement you can spark, the more likely you are to have prime visibility in graph search results. Facebook should be part of your company’s integrated marketing strategy. Scheduling posts is not marketing and it’s not community building, so if that’s all you’re doing on Facebook, don’t expect that it to produce much in the way of brand awareness, lead generation and, most importantly, sales. Give people information they can use, solve problems for them, make them smile, entertain them, offer them deals and make their lives better. If you’re not doing that on Facebook, you’re likely wasting your time.
One last tip? Don’t delay on making these changes. Facebook Graph Search has already started rolling out to select users, and a widespread release will follow. The more complete and active your page, the better positioned you’ll be to take advantage of this new search functionality.
For those of you who are experimenting with Graph Search what do you think so far? How are you prepping your Facebook page for graph search—and, more importantly, what have we missed in the above overview?