Facebook has evolved immensely from the early days of writing notes on \u201cwalls,\u201d to integrating an instant messaging app and purchasing Instagram. The company is now one of the leading social media platforms in the world. In fact, since it\u2019s incorporation, 2.7 million people a day use Facebook to interact with family and friends, share news and special moments, as well as photos and videos. Facebook for Business was born from a similar concept. Its goal is to connect small business owners who are looking to promote their products and services with their target audience.\u00a0Like any new platform, it can be a little daunting to newcomers, but we're on hand to give you an overview on the steps you'll need to take to start your own Facebook Business page for your small business. 8 steps to create your Facebook business page Thanks to a variety of free and paid advertising options, Facebook for Business makes it possible for small business owners in Canada to share their unique business story, increase their customer count, attract new investors and fans, and ultimately, reach their business goals. 1. Sign up A user-friendly platform, Facebook for Business is very easy to set up. Millions of businesses use Facebook for Business and you\u2019ll be able to set up your page in a matter of minutes. The first order of business is signing up. Facebook and Facebook for Business are two very different platforms, although they share similar features. So, even if you already have your own Facebook account, you\u2019ll want to make a brand new page that\u2019s exclusive to your company profile and brand. To start your Facebook Business page, complete the following: \tGo to business.facebook.com\/create and select \u201cCreate Account.\u201d \tEnter your name and confirm your identity with Facebook login credentials. \tFollow the prompts to create your business account. Unlike a traditional Facebook page, Facebook for Business has its own unique set of functions. If you have staff, you might add other individuals to the page and assigning permissions so they can post content and track and manage advertisements. If you\u2019re going to be spending money on advertising, you\u2019ll need to connect a credit card to the account. So, be sure to only share admin access with employees you trust. Once you have signed up and entered all the correct information, such as your business name, contact information, and affiliated websites, it\u2019s time to start building out the rest of your page! 2. Add a profile picture and cover photo Your new Facebook Business page will start with a fresh canvas. You\u2019ll need to add a profile picture, as well as an eye-catching cover photo. The photo you select for your profile picture and cover image are essentially a visual representation of your business and your brand. It\u2019s also the first thing that people will notice when they visit your page. For these reasons, it\u2019s important to choose wisely. Here are a few do\u2019s and don'ts to consider when choosing a Facebook profile picture for your business page: DO \tUse your business logo \u2013 It\u2019s simple and straightforward, and it helps people familiarize themselves with your company. \tUse a simple, square image with the correct dimensions \u2013 This will avoid stretching or pixelating the image. A distorted logo is bad for business! \tThink of your cover photo as your very own free billboard \u2013 \u00a0Share something fun about your business. This is also a great place to advertise any new announcements or special promotions, as it\u2019s always pinned to the top of the page. DON\u2019T \tLeave the profile photo or the cover photo blank \u2013 Otherwise, you\u2019ll have a big, grey space on your page\u2014people are less likely to engage with a page that has blank elements. \tUse a photo of yourself \u2013 Your personal Facebook page and your Facebook Business page should always remain separate. When in doubt, uploading your business logo as the profile photo will always work. Just make sure the cover photo is slightly different to add some creative flair to your page. 3. Create your username Next, you\u2019ll need to decide on a username for your business page. Unfortunately, with millions of people all over the world using Facebook, it\u2019s not always guaranteed that the username you want will be available. For that reason, while your username might not be an exact match to your business name, it should always be as close as possible so that your future customers can find it easily. For example, Christine\u2019s Cookie Creations might be the name of a business in Toronto, and the business\u2019s username might therefore be @ChristinesCookieCreations. But, if that\u2019s not available, a variation could be @ChristinesCookiesTO, showing that the business does indeed sell cookies, and it\u2019s located in Toronto. Remember, the username you choose for your Facebook Business page should be a direct reflection of your actual business. All usernames begin with the \u201c@\u201d symbol, and they appear directly below your page\u2019s profile image, just below the page name. Here are a few tips on choosing a Facebook Business page username: \tIf possible, create a username identical to your business name \u2013 It makes it easier for people to find you. If the username is taken, use as close to a variation as possible. \tYou can only use letters, numbers, and periods to generate a username. You cannot use special characters, so keep that in mind. \tYour username has to be at least five letters long, so if your business name is shorter, try to come up with a way to make it stand out. Your username should never impersonate another person or business. If a username is too close to another business or organization, you\u2019ll need to ensure that visitors don\u2019t mistake your brand for something else. 4. Add your business details Once you\u2019ve chosen a profile and cover image and secured a username, you\u2019ll need to add in your business details. This includes your local business details, so that future page visitors will know how to contact you for more information outside of Facebook. Small business owners who are growing their business on Facebook need to take the following steps : \tSelect \u201cAbout\u201d on the lower left side of your page. \tFrom here, you can add in your business description, contact info, hours of operation, and location. Always ensure that this information is up-to-date and that it matches the information on your business website. \tFill out the \u201cStory\u201d section \u2013 \u00a0This is where you can tell people why you started your business and what it\u2019s all about, including your mission. The following details are important for your Facebook Business page: Description This is where you explain your business. What kinds of products or services do you offer? Where are you located? What do you specialize in, and what makes you stand out? It\u2019s a good idea to add in a link to your website so your customers can find more details about your company. The description of your business is where your future customers or investors form an emotional connection, so you\u2019ll want to give this section some thought. The description can be added to your page by clicking on the \u201cAbout\u201d section, and then clicking \u201cEdit.\u201d You can always change or update this information at any time. Categories Facebook for Business also lets small business owners define their business by category. When you decide to create a Facebook page for your business, you are allowed to choose up to three categories that reflect your company. For example, if you own a landscaping business, choose the most relevant category, instead of simply identifying as a \u201clocal business.\u201d Categories are important for your Facebook Business page because they are directly attached to your page, and influence its performance. Therefore, the more specific your category is, the easier it is for people to find you, especially if they\u2019re trying to narrow down a search, or target specific businesses in the area through advertising. Contact Your contact information helps potential customers get in touch with you directly. Clearly show your business phone number and the name of the contact, if applicable. It\u2019s always a good idea to list an email address as well, in case your customers can\u2019t reach you by phone. Facebook for Business also allows you to set up the Messenger function on your page, which allows people to send you a message instantly. This is a great option for small business owners who don\u2019t wish to answer phone calls or reply to emails past business hours, but still wish to hear from their customers. Location Adding your location to your Facebook Business page enables your page to appear in search results when people are looking for similar businesses in the area. Always make sure that your business address is up-to-date. If it\u2019s contained within another building, indicate the floor level and suite number, for example. Hours Many small business owners in Canada have had to continuously update and\/or change their business hours because of COVID-19. To add or change your business hours, follow these steps: \tFrom your News Feed, click on \u201cPages\u201d in the left menu. \tGo to your page and click \u201cEdit Page Info\u201d on the left side. \tScroll down to the \u201cHours\u201d section. From here, you can add or change your business hours. You can also select \u201cTemporary Service Changes\u201d if your business is temporarily closed or offering different services. \tClick to check the box next to the days your business is open. Click the hours to edit them. To add more hours, click the \u201c+\u201d sign. 5. Tell your story This is where the fun starts! Every small business owner has a story. This is the \u201cwhy\u201d behind the master plan. Facebook for Business allows you to tell this story in both the About section and the Description section. Your story should be a brief description (a few sentences), that outline the background of how and why you started your business. What are you all about? What sets you apart? Why should potential customers choose your business above anyone else? Facebook for Business also has the built-in Stories feature. Similar to Instagram Stories, Facebook Stories allow you to share information, in photo or video form, for a maximum of 20 seconds. As you grow your Facebook Business page following, Stories are a fun place to share images that express the daily goings-on of your company, fun events, news or promotions, host contests or giveaways, and so much more. 6. Create your first post Creating your first post sounds much scarier than it is. Think of your first post as an introduction to your business page, and what it\u2019s all about. Remember, your goal is to build a community and create engagement, so your first post should reflect that. Here are a few ideas to get started: \tWrite an introduction post \u2013 Say hello, and let your followers and supporters know what you\u2019re all about, and what you intend to share via your page. \tConsider including a striking image, GIF, or background for added impact. \tPin the post to the top of your page \u2013 This will ensure that as you continue posting, your original post stays visible to new page visitors. \tShare meaningful content \u2013 Avoid posting just for the sake of posting. Consider what you want your first message to be and illustrate it meaningfully. \tEngage your audience \u2013 Try posing a question, running a poll, or sharing content that inspires a reaction, or a discussion. 7. Publish your page and invite an audience Once you\u2019ve put the finishing touches on your Facebook Business page, it\u2019s time to hit publish! Make sure that all the required fields are filled out. Do a checklist to ensure no crucial information, like your hours of operation or contact details, is missing from your page. Remember, you can always edit your Facebook Business page at any time, but it\u2019s important to go in strong. When you\u2019re starting a page from scratch with zero followers, the more attractive and convincing your page is, the more likely you\u2019ll attract a loyal following. Unlike a regular Facebook page, Facebook for Business isn\u2019t about adding all of your friends from high school. You\u2019ll want to engage with individuals who could potentially see your business as an asset and eventually purchase your products or services. Having zero \u201clikes\u201d can be daunting, but with the following approach, you should start to see your follower count increase in no time! \tOn the left-hand side of your page, click \u201cCommunity\u201d \u2013 This will open up a spot on the right side of the page where you can invite your own network to start. \tInviting friends is a free marketing tool that drives awareness and builds engagement. Plus, they may have friends interested in your business. \tShare your page by clicking the \u201cShare\u201d tab at the top of the page. This allows you to share the page outside your own friend circle. 8. Add a call to action A call to action(CTA) is a great way to drive visitors from your Facebook Business page to your actual website. One of the easiest ways to do this is by using Facebook\u2019s built in Business Manager. To add a Call to Action button to your Facebook Business page, follow these steps: \tOn your page's cover photo, click \u201cCreate Call to Action.\u201d \tChoose your call to action and the destination URL that you want to link to. Facebook will automatically choose the best destination based on your specified web address, but you can edit these suggested destinations. \tClick \u201cCreate.\u201d Once you've created a Call to Action button, you can also easily track the number of people who have clicked on the CTA button, to get a better understanding of how your page is performing. Just like that, you're ready to go. Now you can start to zero in on your target audiences, and make sure your getting the most out of Facebook and your marketing efforts.