Note to Agencies and Page Managers: Tab Widths Are Changing After All

Shortly after Facebook announced its “Platform Roadmap” a few weeks ago, we detailed 5 Things All Page and Brand Managers Should Know about the recent announcements. Please read that story for our full analysis. But one item, in particular, appeared to be unclear at the time: while we originally understood Facebook’s decision to change the width of application tabs as applying to both user profiles and Pages, Facebook told us then that “Pages will not be changing at this time.”

However, that has since apparently changed. Now, Facebook’s developer documentation says that tab widths for apps on “profiles and Pages” will be changing from 760 pixels wide to 520 pixels wide in “late 2009/early 2010.” We reached out to Facebook for confirmation, and they said that the tab width on Pages will indeed be changing as well.

This is a pretty important change for all agencies and Page managers to be aware of, because this means that all Pages that have created custom tabs (either application tabs or tabs designed around special promotions) will need to be updated to fit the new width. If not, they might look broken or poorly designed.

Facebook hasn’t given a specific date for when the new widths will be rolling out to Pages, but since we’re already in “late 2009″ it could be coming very soon. We’ll let you know as soon as we have more information on the rollout schedule. For now, agencies and page managers should prepare to make the transition even though we don’t know exactly when it will happen.

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11 Responses to “Note to Agencies and Page Managers: Tab Widths Are Changing After All”

  1. Brian Breslin says:

    what i would like to know is WHY are they wasting time with this? Why cut BACK on the area we as developers/marketers have to work with? Is it because the left hand gutter will be remaining on each tab from now on?

    They need to make up their minds.

  2. Jeff says:

    The change in tab width was clear from the beginning. Not knowing when it will happen and all of the ramifications of the removal of boxes remains challenging.


  3. Tim Ware says:

    Of course, the question that is begged is, What is Facebook intending for the additional 240px of real estate they’re picking up? I, too, find it weird and disturbing that FB would make a change that throws a spanner into the works of so many folks, marketers & otherwise. It diminishes Facebook’s appeal as a friendly home to businesses. Yes, make up your minds!

  4. ATTN Nonprofits: Major Changes Coming Soon to Facebook Fan Pages « Nonprofit Tech 2.0 says:

    [...] Can Successfully Use Facebook and YouTube [New Changes will be covered beginning 12/15] Alert! Facebook Pages Are Changing: Are You Ready? Note to Agencies and Page Managers: Tab Widths [...]

  5. Facebook Pages – an overview « Tivix | Blog says:

    [...] changes to Facebook Pages – Facebook is about to make some important changes to Facebook Pages late 2009 or early 2010. The biggest change is changing the width available for [...]

  6. ATTN Small Businesses: Major Changes Coming Soon to Facebook Fan Pages « Small Business Tech 2.0 says:

    [...] ATTN Small Businesses: Major Changes Coming Soon to Facebook Fan Pages 2009 December 15 tags: Facebook by smallbusinesstechnology PLEASE NOTE: These new changes will be covered in the 12/17 Webinar: How Small Businesses Can Successfully Use Facebook and Twitter. [...]

  7. Zach Art Director says:

    Facebook = waste of time.

  8. Facebook Reducing Width of Application Pages in 2009/2010 says:

    [...] (Justin Smith) [...]

  9. Brandon Faulkner says:

    Any update on this fiasco?

    How do you think pages will degrade once they make this invasive change? If a horizontal scrollbar is added to accommodate the new width, at least I’d know my pages weren’t going to break completely…

  10. | Nutzerzahlen, Yahoo integriert Facebook, Entwickler Verifizierung, Tab Änderungen uvm. (Kurzmitteilungen 32) says:

    [...] when Facebook laid out its Platform Roadmap for the next several months, it announced that thedimensions of custom tabs on Facebook Pages would be changing from 760 pixels wide to 520 pixels wide in “late 2009/early [...]

  11. Trevor Green says:

    How about a class action lawsuit on behalf of all the marketers and business es that have invested in facebook and helped make it more vibrant and relevant with their information.

    Lets sue them for the time we are wasting even talking about them trying to grab back real estate from tabs.

    And then lets sue them again after they do it. They can pay for all the changes.

    Do the math, many millions of dollars worth of money will be flushed and many millions more spend to retool.

    This is a complete violation of the unspoken agreement that a company makes with its customers to provide a consistant product.

    I would hope that droves of business just abandon facebook and hopefully tell them customers on facebook when they do where they can go to stick with them.

    Try Buddypress, they can’t take that from you and change it whenever they want after you have spent your hard earn money configuring it.

    Strangely, the articles I read about this proposed change don’t include near as much disbelief and anger as I would expect.

    At the very least, they need to make this a policy only for new pages and leave 100% of the existing tabs alone.

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