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Facebook Page Setup Guide for Multi-Location Retailers & Franchise Businesses

Posted on 26th November 2014 , by Kunle Campbell in Social Media

If you manage social media for a national/international retail brand or a franchise business with stores across multiple locations, a point most social media managers miss is that just like Google Local Google My Business,  Facebook allows multi-location and franchise businesses to set up interconnected local Facebook pages for each location or branch. This post aims to provide a step-by-step Facebook page setup guide for retailers and other businesses that operate in multiple locations.

The Parent-child structure

The first concept to get to grasp with is the Parent-child structure – it is a means of connecting your franchise or location pages, as ‘children,’ to the corporate page or ‘parent.’ Here is an example: this is Topshop’s core Facebook page with the ‘Locations’ tab in view that displays several other Topshop stores all over the country:

Topshop-facebook page And if the London Strand store’s Facebook page icon was clicked, it will take you to a Facebook Local check-in page that should look like this: Banners_and_Alerts_and_Topshop__Strand_ And this is the Marks and Spencer Milton Keynes‘ store Facebook page: Marks_and_Spencer_-_Milton_Keynes Cotswold Outdoor’s Facebook Page however takes a fragmented approach – with separate Facebook local pages set up for each branch rather than a Parent-child structure. Here is the Cotswold Outdoor Watford’s page: Cotswold_Outdoor_Watford And here is their core Facebook page: cotswold outdoor facebook page

Child pages – Check-In Only Vs Fully Fledged Fan Pages

It is worth noting that all of the examples above i.e. Topshop and M&S have their child Facebook pages as Check-in only local pages but you will have a choice to set child page up as fully-fledged pages (which I will cover later in their guide). The Gold Gym franchise do just that; here is the Gold Gym Long Beach, California’s child page which allows full fan interaction as well as visitor check-ins: Facebook page: Gold Gym Long Beach

 

The advantage of having fully fledged fan child pages is that it enables page managers of individual locations add content that is locally relevant.  So if you’re operating a store in five European countries, for instance, the distances mean that relevant events aren’t going to be the same – when it’s Oktoberfest in Munich, Nice is gearing up for the Nice Carnival, so anything relevant to events won’t sit comfortably on one page. Local changes in demand, supply and appropriate branding might have their effects too.

Cascading Content

You can cascade profile content from your parent account to all your ‘children’ but not post content. Parent-child structuring lets you cascade the following profile fields to your child pages:

  • Profile pictures,
  • Cover pictures
  • Categories
  • Business hours
  • Parent page name

How to Set Up Parent-child Structure

UPDATE: I got in touch with a Facebook rep to set up a Parent-child structure for a client (as the process has changed since I wrote this post).

Step 1:

All you need to do now is to get in touch with the Facebook business team via email with:

  1. The name of your business
  2. brand that is implementing Locations
  3. the URL of the official page.

The Facebook rep will submit your request to grant your main Page ‘gatekeeper privileges’, which gives you the ability to access Location Manager. After this has been granted, admins and editors of the main page will be able to:

  • Add existing locations to the main page
  • Create new locations that can be added to the main page
  • Add new locations in bulk (via the spreadsheet) and
  • Edit existing locations pages.

This is a screenshot of an email I received from my Facebook rep:

Your_Facebook_Advertising_Support_Request___ref__00DA0K9kF__50012SwIe5_ref___-_kc_2xmedia_co_-_2x_Consulting_Mail

The first step will be to hop over to Facebook’s Location Information help page:

Location_Information

A point to note is that Facebook is pushing it’s Facebook Wi-Fi service in order to encourage more check-ins to local Facebook pages. So applying for the set-up of multiple locations in a Parent-child format also means applying for Facebook Wi-Fi for your business.

After you complete the form, a Facebook representative would typically get in touch with you between 1-4 weeks. If your application is successful, then the Facebook rep will enable location pages on your parent page (and if you have five or over branches), provide you with a bulk spreadsheet for you to input all your child pages en-masse.

Step 2: Bulk Adding Locations with Spreadsheet

The Facebook rep will provide a spreadsheet that must be completed in order to bulk add branch (or child pages).  The mandatory fields required are:

[table “” not found /]

Step 3: Review and Submit Your Spreadsheet

submit spreadsheet

Be sure to thoroughly review your spreadsheet before submitting it because the typical 48-hour turnaround time could be much longer if Facebook finds errors in the submitted spreadsheet.

Manually Adding Locations

Just go to ‘Edit Page’, and then ‘Manage Locations’: manage page edit locations Then

click ‘Add a Location’ and select Choose an Existing Page or ‘Create a new Page’: add page facebook locations

 

If you see the location page that you’d like to add, then select: Choose an Existing Page, on the list. If the page is not on the list, select: ‘I don’t see my Page here’ to search for it.

choose an existing page

Create a New Page:

You can just manually set up a page from scratch, by adding all the required fields as stipulated in the table above.  At a minimum you’d be required to enter a unique store number,   subcategories, address, phone number, hours   and Facebook web address. create new page

The new child Page will inherit the name and category of the parent Page.  After you’ve added the new location, it will automatically get listed on the locations settings page and on the   locations map on your main Facebook Page. Facebook advise is that you pay special attention to Subcategories as they enable your page get found found in Facebook search.

Editing Locations Manually

click the edit icon Editing location pages is a relatively straight forward exercise: on the list of locations, just click the ‘edit’ icon and it should pop open location form.

Editing Locations in Bulk with Spreadsheets

import multiple locations Editing multiple locations is equally straight forward – right at the top of the location list, click the ‘Import Multiple Locations’ button to begin downloading location data. download all locations Just download the spreadsheet, edit the spreadsheet directly by editing existing rows (locations) or adding new rows (locations). save and upload your file Save in UTF-16.txt and upload your file.

Aggregated Check-in Data

A point to note is that with a Facebook location setup, aggregated check-ins and custom deals across all pages are counted on the Parent page, letting you keep track of total check-ins across the company. Although check-ins are aggregated up to the Parent page, likes and other vital analytics aren’t. If you want aggregated likes, you’ll have to crunch the numbers yourself.

Cascaded Facebook Offers

National or regional deals can be created centrally and cascaded down to child pages, so when it’s the right time to offer a deal or when a nationwide event arrives you can strategise conveniently and on a large scale, and without prejudicing local managers’ ability to offer local deals.

Super-admins

Finally, don’t forget about super-admin rights. The Parent page administrator has admin rights for all the child pages that work with local names and passwords. When local staff lose vital information, leave or sell franchises, it can be hard to keep access open and content marketing efforts can suffer – but Parent administrator privileges can solve that problem. The Parent and child administrations operate side-by-side, so both administrators can be active at once and Parent admin privileges don’t interfere with local admins.

Caveats

Sounds great. What’s the catch? There isn’t one as such, but there are some weaknesses in the system. As ‘super-admin,’ the corporate Parent page admin is able to access Facebook Insights for the Parent page and for each child page, but there’s no aggregate Insights page. You’ll need to go page by page and view the metrics for each location individually. Additionally, the Parent admin is able to create posts on behalf of the child admins – but must go to each individual page to do it. There’s no easy cascade mechanism. Notifications don’t travel upward either – Parent admins need to be watching at the page level for responses and recent activity, which is a bit daunting if you have hundreds of pages.

Your Turn…

What has been your experience with the set up of Facebook Location pages? Do you have any other advantages and drawback that you’d like to share?

About the author:

Kunle Campbell

An ecommerce advisor to ambitious, agile online retailers and funded ecommerce startups seeking exponentially sales growth through scalable customer acquisition, retention, conversion optimisation, product/market fit optimisation and customer referrals.

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  • Pingback: Top 25 Inbound Marketing Articles of the Week: December 5, 2014 – UpCity()

  • Thanks a lot for awesome read, I was wondering with the same problem after a long time.

  • Isabel Perez Baumann

    Hi Kunie, can we contact just anyone on Facebook or do we actually have to have someone assigned to our account? Could you suggest me an email? Does Facebook ask for an investment in exchange of this service? Thank you!

  • R.B

    hi, nice article! I wanted to know how much does it cost to setup the parent child system? And is there a fee paid to the facebook representative? Also are there a certain no. of likes for the page required? Or a size of business required to be eligible?

  • Krista

    Thanks! This was really helpful. Here’s a direct link to the FB page that allows you to request additional Locations… https://www.facebook.com/business/help/956093091134327

Facebook Page Setup Guide for Multi-Location Retailers & Franchise Businesses

Posted on 26th November 2014 , by Kunle Campbell in Social Media

If you manage social media for a national/international retail brand or a franchise business with stores across multiple locations, a point most social media managers miss is that just like Google Local Google My Business,  Facebook allows multi-location and franchise businesses to set up interconnected local Facebook pages for each location or branch. This post aims to provide a step-by-step Facebook page setup guide for retailers and other businesses that operate in multiple locations.

The Parent-child structure

The first concept to get to grasp with is the Parent-child structure – it is a means of connecting your franchise or location pages, as ‘children,’ to the corporate page or ‘parent.’ Here is an example: this is Topshop’s core Facebook page with the ‘Locations’ tab in view that displays several other Topshop stores all over the country:

Topshop-facebook page And if the London Strand store’s Facebook page icon was clicked, it will take you to a Facebook Local check-in page that should look like this: Banners_and_Alerts_and_Topshop__Strand_ And this is the Marks and Spencer Milton Keynes‘ store Facebook page: Marks_and_Spencer_-_Milton_Keynes Cotswold Outdoor’s Facebook Page however takes a fragmented approach – with separate Facebook local pages set up for each branch rather than a Parent-child structure. Here is the Cotswold Outdoor Watford’s page: Cotswold_Outdoor_Watford And here is their core Facebook page: cotswold outdoor facebook page

Child pages – Check-In Only Vs Fully Fledged Fan Pages

It is worth noting that all of the examples above i.e. Topshop and M&S have their child Facebook pages as Check-in only local pages but you will have a choice to set child page up as fully-fledged pages (which I will cover later in their guide). The Gold Gym franchise do just that; here is the Gold Gym Long Beach, California’s child page which allows full fan interaction as well as visitor check-ins: Facebook page: Gold Gym Long Beach

 

The advantage of having fully fledged fan child pages is that it enables page managers of individual locations add content that is locally relevant.  So if you’re operating a store in five European countries, for instance, the distances mean that relevant events aren’t going to be the same – when it’s Oktoberfest in Munich, Nice is gearing up for the Nice Carnival, so anything relevant to events won’t sit comfortably on one page. Local changes in demand, supply and appropriate branding might have their effects too.

Cascading Content

You can cascade profile content from your parent account to all your ‘children’ but not post content. Parent-child structuring lets you cascade the following profile fields to your child pages:

  • Profile pictures,
  • Cover pictures
  • Categories
  • Business hours
  • Parent page name

How to Set Up Parent-child Structure

UPDATE: I got in touch with a Facebook rep to set up a Parent-child structure for a client (as the process has changed since I wrote this post).

Step 1:

All you need to do now is to get in touch with the Facebook business team via email with:

  1. The name of your business
  2. brand that is implementing Locations
  3. the URL of the official page.

The Facebook rep will submit your request to grant your main Page ‘gatekeeper privileges’, which gives you the ability to access Location Manager. After this has been granted, admins and editors of the main page will be able to:

  • Add existing locations to the main page
  • Create new locations that can be added to the main page
  • Add new locations in bulk (via the spreadsheet) and
  • Edit existing locations pages.

This is a screenshot of an email I received from my Facebook rep:

Your_Facebook_Advertising_Support_Request___ref__00DA0K9kF__50012SwIe5_ref___-_kc_2xmedia_co_-_2x_Consulting_Mail

The first step will be to hop over to Facebook’s Location Information help page:

Location_Information

A point to note is that Facebook is pushing it’s Facebook Wi-Fi service in order to encourage more check-ins to local Facebook pages. So applying for the set-up of multiple locations in a Parent-child format also means applying for Facebook Wi-Fi for your business.

After you complete the form, a Facebook representative would typically get in touch with you between 1-4 weeks. If your application is successful, then the Facebook rep will enable location pages on your parent page (and if you have five or over branches), provide you with a bulk spreadsheet for you to input all your child pages en-masse.

Step 2: Bulk Adding Locations with Spreadsheet

The Facebook rep will provide a spreadsheet that must be completed in order to bulk add branch (or child pages).  The mandatory fields required are:

[table “” not found /]

Step 3: Review and Submit Your Spreadsheet

submit spreadsheet

Be sure to thoroughly review your spreadsheet before submitting it because the typical 48-hour turnaround time could be much longer if Facebook finds errors in the submitted spreadsheet.

Manually Adding Locations

Just go to ‘Edit Page’, and then ‘Manage Locations’: manage page edit locations Then

click ‘Add a Location’ and select Choose an Existing Page or ‘Create a new Page’: add page facebook locations

 

If you see the location page that you’d like to add, then select: Choose an Existing Page, on the list. If the page is not on the list, select: ‘I don’t see my Page here’ to search for it.

choose an existing page

Create a New Page:

You can just manually set up a page from scratch, by adding all the required fields as stipulated in the table above.  At a minimum you’d be required to enter a unique store number,   subcategories, address, phone number, hours   and Facebook web address. create new page

The new child Page will inherit the name and category of the parent Page.  After you’ve added the new location, it will automatically get listed on the locations settings page and on the   locations map on your main Facebook Page. Facebook advise is that you pay special attention to Subcategories as they enable your page get found found in Facebook search.

Editing Locations Manually

click the edit icon Editing location pages is a relatively straight forward exercise: on the list of locations, just click the ‘edit’ icon and it should pop open location form.

Editing Locations in Bulk with Spreadsheets

import multiple locations Editing multiple locations is equally straight forward – right at the top of the location list, click the ‘Import Multiple Locations’ button to begin downloading location data. download all locations Just download the spreadsheet, edit the spreadsheet directly by editing existing rows (locations) or adding new rows (locations). save and upload your file Save in UTF-16.txt and upload your file.

Aggregated Check-in Data

A point to note is that with a Facebook location setup, aggregated check-ins and custom deals across all pages are counted on the Parent page, letting you keep track of total check-ins across the company. Although check-ins are aggregated up to the Parent page, likes and other vital analytics aren’t. If you want aggregated likes, you’ll have to crunch the numbers yourself.

Cascaded Facebook Offers

National or regional deals can be created centrally and cascaded down to child pages, so when it’s the right time to offer a deal or when a nationwide event arrives you can strategise conveniently and on a large scale, and without prejudicing local managers’ ability to offer local deals.

Super-admins

Finally, don’t forget about super-admin rights. The Parent page administrator has admin rights for all the child pages that work with local names and passwords. When local staff lose vital information, leave or sell franchises, it can be hard to keep access open and content marketing efforts can suffer – but Parent administrator privileges can solve that problem. The Parent and child administrations operate side-by-side, so both administrators can be active at once and Parent admin privileges don’t interfere with local admins.

Caveats

Sounds great. What’s the catch? There isn’t one as such, but there are some weaknesses in the system. As ‘super-admin,’ the corporate Parent page admin is able to access Facebook Insights for the Parent page and for each child page, but there’s no aggregate Insights page. You’ll need to go page by page and view the metrics for each location individually. Additionally, the Parent admin is able to create posts on behalf of the child admins – but must go to each individual page to do it. There’s no easy cascade mechanism. Notifications don’t travel upward either – Parent admins need to be watching at the page level for responses and recent activity, which is a bit daunting if you have hundreds of pages.

Your Turn…

What has been your experience with the set up of Facebook Location pages? Do you have any other advantages and drawback that you’d like to share?

About the author:

Kunle Campbell

An ecommerce advisor to ambitious, agile online retailers and funded ecommerce startups seeking exponentially sales growth through scalable customer acquisition, retention, conversion optimisation, product/market fit optimisation and customer referrals.

Did You Enjoy Reading this Article?

Get Free Email Updates by Signing Up Below:

  • Pingback: Top 25 Inbound Marketing Articles of the Week: December 5, 2014 – UpCity()

  • Thanks a lot for awesome read, I was wondering with the same problem after a long time.

  • Isabel Perez Baumann

    Hi Kunie, can we contact just anyone on Facebook or do we actually have to have someone assigned to our account? Could you suggest me an email? Does Facebook ask for an investment in exchange of this service? Thank you!

  • R.B

    hi, nice article! I wanted to know how much does it cost to setup the parent child system? And is there a fee paid to the facebook representative? Also are there a certain no. of likes for the page required? Or a size of business required to be eligible?

  • Krista

    Thanks! This was really helpful. Here’s a direct link to the FB page that allows you to request additional Locations… https://www.facebook.com/business/help/956093091134327

eCommerce Marketing Growth Hacks 

UPCOMING WEBINAR:
November 21st 4:30pm GMT / 11:30am EST
with Kunle
Campbell

Facebook Funnels for Ecommerce that CONVERT

Register now

2X eCommerce Podcast

Kunle interviews Founders of Fast Growing 7-8 Figure Online Retail Business & E-commerce Marketing Experts

View podcasts

Download your free ebook

More

The eCommerce Marketing Blueprint