I recently added a Facebook page for my website. One of my favorite things about MySpace over Facebook was how much each person was able to customize their own pages. When I found out that you could customize your fan page on Facebook I was immediately interested in figuring out how to create a Custom Facebook Fan Page instead of just the plain old Facebook. The customization is not near as open as MySpace but at least there are ways which I can make my page my own.
The first step to getting your own custom page is to add the static FBML application to your Facebook Page. To do this: go to the static Facebook ML App Page (search for it in Facebook) and click on the "Add To My Page" link in the left navigation bar. Then a dialog box will pop up asking you which Facebook Page you would like to add this application too, you would then click on whichever of your own Facebook Pages you are looking to customize.
Now you need to get into the Edit App Page for your new app. To do this: go to your Facebook Page (not your personal Facebook page but rather your business or fan page). You should see "FBML 1" in the apps section of your left sidebar. Click on this FBML 1 link to go to your app page. Click on "Edit Info" at the top to start editing your page. Once in the Edit section of your Facebook click on Apps in the left sidebar. You will now get a list of your Apps, scroll down till you see FBML and click on "Go To App".
Now comes the fun part of actually editing your custom page. First you should change the "Box Title". This is just going to be the name of your Custom Facebook tab. The custom tab is going to be the first page your visitors will see when they visit your Facebook Page so maybe you want to name it "HOME", or maybe you want to name it something that is more suitable to your niche, market, or business, it's up to you. Do not forget to save your changes at the bottom.
The absolutely awesome thing to remember when customizing your Facebook Page is that the Custom Page can use HTML . This means you can add regular web code into your Facebook just as you would own your webpage allowing for a great deal of real customization possibilities. If you are still timid after a little study, you can always hire a designer to create a good Home Page for you.
The next step is the big step. Now you have to write your custom page. Remember you can add HTML here; you can add inline styles, images, links and other HTML to help customize your custom home page. This is where you can go crazy with design. Make your page as simple or as complex as you like. If you do not have a solid understanding of HTML you can just make your home page simple text but if you really want it to pop consider learning a little HTML or hiring someone to design it for you.
Now there is just one last step. You want this new page you worked so hard on to be the first page people see when they come to your Facebook Page, so you need to change the pages settings to make this page the default landing page. Go back to the "Edit Page" screen like you did before, except instead of clicking to edit your Apps you are going to click on "Manage Permissions" in the left sidebar. Find the drop down box that says "Default Landing Tab" and scroll down to the tab that you just created. Click on Save and your finished.
Feel free to log out and check out your page anonymously and you will see your new homepage pop up as your new visitors will see it (if you check out your page while logged in you will automatically go to the admin section and not actually see the page as a visitor would see it).
This new page makes a great first impression to entice new visitors to "LIKE" your page, or to follow through with whatever call to action your new custom home page and business prescribes.