How Apps Act as Navigation Links in Facebook - dummies

By Andrea Vahl, John Haydon, Jan Zimmerman

The boxes below your Cover image that you and your visitors see on your Facebook business Page are actually applications, which are add-ons that provide extra functionality to your Page. When you create your Page, the public sees only two apps: Photos and Likes (if at least one person has liked the Page).

You can add some great apps to the app section right away, such as Events, Notes, and Video. These apps were developed and designed by Facebook, so they’re in the queue (so to speak), ready to be added to your Page.

Apps act as gateways. You can set up an app to take people back to

  • Your website’s home page

  • Your product pages (not on Facebook)

  • Your sales pages

  • Your contest pages

Using a simple image and a link, you can create an app space to link anywhere.

You can also create a Facebook ad that goes right back to the app. If you have a webinar sign-up app, for example, you can create an ad that’s linked directly to that sign-up interface. You can target the ad to your existing fans or use the app as a “fan gate,” requiring a visitor to like your Page to get the webinar info.

If you have a contest, create an ad that links right back to that app on your Page. Design the app so that visitors need to click Like to see the contest rules and enter the contest. This is a fantastic way to garner more likes for your Page and to create buzz and excitement about your contest.

Each app has its own unique URL that you can share anywhere — on Twitter, with your e-mail subscribers, or on your blog. Each app can also be its own mini-website. To get an app’s URL address, click the app and look at the address in the browser window.

You can copy and share that address on another site or even paste it into the Status of your Facebook Page to direct your Fans to the app.

After their initial visit to your business Page, most people view your Page’s updates only via their News Feed and Ticker: They will rarely visit your actual business Page. Facebook has a featured called — the hover card — which shows your Cover image, Profile image, and Page category when a reader mouses over your Page name in his News Feed.

If you want your audience to visit your Page and explore your other apps, you need to provide strong calls to action in your status updates and provide a link directly to the app. Examples of a call to action include a request to like your Page, join an event, or participate in a contest. To develop a stronger sense of community, bringing people back to your Page is an important goal.