Facebook Vanity URLs Only Available to Pages With More Than 1,000 Fans

pagerushFacebook has just announced the Username Landrush of 2009 for Facebook profiles and Pages – and with it perhaps the greatest Facebook SEO opportunity to date.

Now businesses can get vanity URLs for their Facebook Pages and benefit from Facebook’s significant PageRank if they get a high quality Facebook username.

However, Facebook has put some rules in place to curtail the upcoming bonanza and is structuring the landgrab to prevent squatting as much as possible. Here are the most important rules you need to know:

1. Only pages with more than 1,000 fans before May 31 will be eligible to choose a username. In other words, you can’t go start 10,000 pages today and expect to get Facebook vanity URLs for them. You have to have started a while ago and built your Page up. However, this rule weeds out legitimate Page owners with less than 1,000 fans as well.

2. Facebook is not allowing Page owners to choose generic vanity URLs. The most SEO-able usernames are those that most closely match frequently searched terms, like “flowers” or “pizza.” However, Facebook says that generic words are not available as usernames at this time. Rather, Facebook “encourages all users and Page administrators to create a username that closely matches the true identity of their name or business.”

3. Facebook is not allowing Page owners to change or transfer usernames/URLs. Once you pick a username for your page, that’s your page’s username forever – so pick one you’re going to like for the long term. This also means that it will be harder for a black market around usernames alone to develop. However, good usernames will now become a selling point of Pages, just like the number and type of fans.

4. Facebook is allowing rights holders to prevent their trademarks from being registered as usernames. If you own a trademark that you want to prevent others from registering as their Facebook username, Facebook has created this form that you can fill out to file the request.

For more comprehensive details and best practices on marketing with Facebook Pages, check out our industry leading Facebook Marketing Bible.

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19 Responses to “Facebook Vanity URLs Only Available to Pages With More Than 1,000 Fans”

  1. Jamison says:

    Oh well, that was exciting while it lasted. :(

    I guess I’ll have to get more fans for my pages, other than myself.

    Hopefully they will open it up later to people who have long term pages that have under 1,000 fans.

  2. Ben Spedoske says:

    But this only affects Pages, correct? It seems that anyone can create a custom URL for their profile page, as long as they get there first. I’m assuming there’s no friend minimum… the above are just steps they’ve put into place for businesses, right?

    On a related note, how great would it be if you managed to get your URL right at 12:01 am on Sat.? I could be entitled to JUST the epic http://www.facebook.com/Ben.

  3. Ben Spedoske says:

    UPDATE: Turns out that URL is already registered to a Ben that works at Facebook. Figures.

  4. Jim Burnell says:

    I would mind a lot less about announcements like this if they would just explain the rules more thoroughly.

    Are legitimate pages with fewer than 1000 fans just screwed forever? Even if they eventually have more than 1000 fans?

  5. Facebook presenta i Vanity Url | Technico Blog says:

    [...] a stretto giro di post, la nuova update, riportata da Inside Facebook, avverte che questa nuova feature sarà disponibile solamente per le pagine con più di 1000 [...]

  6. Jamie Ellis says:

    I heard there going to be 5 character minimum so 2-4 letter names or words not be available

    doubting facebook.com/firstname is going to have many vacancies so common names and surnames going to have issues like and hopefully Facebook has not to result something pointless jamie.ellis13233 lol as there is a good 430+ (at time of writing) with my name ‘Jamie Ellis’ both male and female (Jamie being unisex)

    even facebook.com/jamie seems already used (some Google Employee)

  7. Joffrey says:

    It really sucks, I have only 974 fans. >_<

    I hope it will be available for everyone on June 29th: http://www.facebook.com/help.php?page=898

  8. Laurent Courtines says:

    Games.com facebook fan page falls short as well.
    We’re at 900 even. My concern is for my site. We’re Games.com I mean? Can we register in advance to keep our sweet url?
    I have my my team ready to pounce!

  9. jardenberg kommenterar - 2009-06-10 — jardenberg unedited says:

    [...] Facebook Vanity URLs Only Available to Pages With More Than 1,000 Fans [...]

  10. URL Vanity e le regole per lo username su FAcebook « Blogger Italiani says:

    [...] clipped from http://www.insidefacebook.com [...]

  11. A Martin says:

    It’s apparent to me that facebook is making sure that companies who have more than 1000 fans will benefit from their page rank through these vanity urls, BECAUSE those are the very companies who facebook thinks will also benefit THEIR page rank.

    Small companies, even those that have a good pagerank are screwed.

    Thanks facebook.

  12. Francisco Hernández-Marcos says:

    Point #4 has been very useful for me! Thanks a lot!

  13. Doug Kolmar says:

    I just checked out the help page on this and under eligibility it doesn’t mention the 1,000 fan limit. I wonder if they dropped that based on user feedback. Here’s what it says.

    Eligibility is limited to anyone who joined Facebook before usernames were publicly announced at 3 p.m. (EDT) on June 9, 2009. These users will have the chance to claim usernames at 12:01 a.m. (EDT) on Saturday, June 13, 2009.

    This limitation is temporary. All users who joined Facebook after the cut-off will be eligible to claim usernames on Sunday, June 28, 2009.

  14. Michael DiBenedetto says:

    I don’t think the five character limit applies to all. At least there are exceptions. check out /mike and /mark.

  15. On your mark, get set, go! Facebook Vanity URLs « Beyondus Blog says:

    [...] a good recap of what this whole thing entails: on Inside Facebook and on Facebook’s own FAQs for profiles and for [...]

  16. Vanity urls to increase ad revenues « socialmediocrity says:

    [...] What’s more Facebook themselves have taken steps to avoid abuse, such as only being available to pages with 1000 or more fans. [...]

  17. nebben says:

    Hosting a Facebook vanity URL party on Twitter. Use #fburlparty in a tweet & it will show up on this page. http://bit.ly/10xK1W

  18. Facebook Vanity URLs Will be Available to Pages With Under 1,000 Fans in 2 Weeks says:

    [...] The Facebook username landrush starts tonight at 12:01am EDT, and with it comes potentially the best one-time opportunity for businesses to improve their Facebook identity and SEO by getting a good Facebook vanity URL. [...]

  19. Jillian says:

    Ok, so how do we go about getting this/ I;m lost….

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