Do a quick search for your local business on Facebook. What do you see?
If you see two or more pages with your business name on it, chances are that you only own one of them. These ‘duplicate’ pages may even have reviews, check-ins and customer comments.
In a digital age where reviews and comments can make or break your brand, it’s important for you to regain control of your customer engagement on Facebook by merging duplicate Facebook pages into your main brand page.
Here are the two most common reasons Facebook pages for your business exist without your knowledge:
- Someone checks in one of your business locations which doesn’t have a page yet. In this situation, Facebook automatically creates a page for that location. This page is known as an unclaimed page.
- Another person (usually an employee) has created a page for your business without your knowledge, but might not be managing it actively. This page is known as an unauthorised page.
To merge duplicate Facebook pages into your main brand page, do a Facebook search for your brand and list down all the duplicate pages that you can find.
Here’s how you merge them into your main brand page:
A page is unclaimed when the tag ‘Unofficial page’ appears on the top right corner of the page, followed by a clickable ‘Is this your business’ link.
To merge an unclaimed page, you must be an admin of your main brand page. Having your main page verified helps you to hasten the process as well.
To merge an unclaimed page:
- Click on the ‘is this your business’ link?
- Select the 1st option (Merge with an existing page you manage) and follow the instructions given. If this option is unavailable, proceed to the following.
- Select the 2nd option (Claim with phone or documents). There will be a screen with the option to verify by phone. If there is a dedicated person at your business with an extension that handles social media/marketing, this option is ideal. Otherwise, click on ‘verify by business email or documents’.
- From here, you have 2 options:
– verify by email: choose this option if your company email (email@example.com) is connected to your Facebook account as a primary or secondary email. Choose your company email address from the drop-down list given and click ‘submit’.
– verify by documents: Take a picture of relevant documents that has your businesses’ name, address and phone number, then click ‘submit’.
Unauthorised pages are harder to merge than unclaimed pages because someone else is an owner of that page, and you’ll need to track that person down. Here are some ways you can expedite the process:
- On the unauthorised page, use the ‘send message’ option to contact the owner of the page to initiate a transfer of ownership.
- If sending a message doesn’t get you a response, use the ‘report page’ button and select the ‘duplicate page’ option. (Note that reporting the page is subject to Facebook’s approval.)
- As a last resort, let the unauthorised page ‘die a natural death’ – by verifying your main page and populating it with content, your main page becomes more prominent in search results, giving it credibility over the unauthorised page.
*Find out more social media content management tips in our Social Media Content Bootcamp in Hong Kong 16 May and Kuala Lumpur 24 October.