Three FREE apps for adding custom tabs to your Facebook business page

Easy free Facebook appsFor a few years now, I have been encouraging clients to add custom welcome, or landing, pages to their Facebook business pages.

However, a few months ago, Facebook changed the techniques they will allow for building such custom pages and the new method requires some code work that is quite ugly if you are a newbie.

So I have been surveying the landscape for Apps that make creating new custom elements easy without costing, well, anything.

And today I can share three with you, along with a slightly naughty video as a bonus if you head across to The RITE Series Facebook Page and click LIKE.

Changes in a nutshell

Basically, you could use a simplified version of HTML to create your own content pages within Facebook until recently.

This code sat on the Facebook site and required just a little understanding to make it work.

You can see such a page, which I created a year ago here, at the Baristador Coffee Facebook Page.

But you must now use a different method.

Instead of crafting your page within Facebook, you must now you what is called iFrame technology. In essence, an iFrame creates a window in your Facebook Page which shows us a page that is actually being loaded from somewhere else. Typically, this ‘somewhere else’ is on your own web host.

The advantage of this method is that you can create a contact form, competition form, image display, etc, all on your own web host and when visitors interact from Facebook they get the ‘safety and convenience’ of staying within Facebook but you get the ‘convenience and efficiency’ of having them actually input information directly into your own website.

This disadvantage is that you need to be a lot more advanced with your coding ability for this to be an easy process.

Static HTML

The most basic free app I have to share with you is Static HTML: iFrame App.

This recreates the simplicity of the old method for creating custom Facebook Page content but it meets all of Facebook’s new conditions.

In essence you still create your content in HTML but you can do a lot more fancy stuff with your code, if you choose to.

I still think it would pay to work with someone very comfortable with HTML, and your design person.

As a bonus, you can choose to allow parcels of your content to be hidden from people UNTIL they click LIKE. This is called Fan-Gating. I have done this on The RITE Series Facebook Page – you need to click LIKE to be able to watch the cheeky video.

Log in to Facebook then visit http://www.facebook.com/apps/application.php?id=190322544333196 to install the app on your page in one click.

TabPress

This alternative app is very similar to Static HTML but comes with a few more bells and whistles and a nicer look to the user interface.

You can not only add HTML but also Javascript which allows for some fancy functionality on your Page.

Again, login to Facebook and click through to http://www.facebook.com/apps/application.php?id=176217385757369&sk=app_195227247178799 for another one click installation process to add it to your Page.

iwiPage

Don’t be put off by the weird name, this app has a lot of friendly tools added to it to allow non-coders to create interesting, multi-tabbed custom pages on Facebook.

While most of it is free, there are some paid addons that look good such as being able to link up your Google Analytics account and getting more granular control over what Fans see and what non-Fans miss out on.

Again, log in to Facebook then click on http://www.facebook.com/apps/application.php?id=106878476015645 for another one-click install.

However, be warned that because this tries to do smarter things you might want to watch the short and helpful tutorial videos that you will see links to when you are editing your page.

On The RITE Series Facebook Page I have added a scrolling welcome message (mainly because I could), introductory text with an image, a comments area and a fan zone (we live in hope), a video tab which is hidden until you LIKE the page, an image gallery and a link back to this website.

Because so much is offered for free, you will see a large ad in the admin screen when YOU are logged in to your own pages. Your visitors don’t see them. I suppose, when you have half a million monthly users of your app it makes sense to get money from advertising!

Do you have any favourite Facebook apps that are free and useful? Please share them below along with links to Pages where they are in use.

Speak Your Mind

*