Facebook shows profile completion percentage, asks for current city

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By Jonathan Espinosa Comment

Some Facebook users are noticing a profile completion percentage in their About tab. The social network is also asking for users to provide their current city in the info section right under their profile picture. These are a few new ways that Facebook is encouraging users to add more information about themselves and improve the targeting options for its advertisements.

The profile completion percentage appears in the top right corner of the About tab on a user’s Timeline. This feature is similar to the profile completion percentages on other social networks such as LinkedIn and Google+. The more information a user provides, the larger the percentage. These details include basic information such as birthday, gender, religion, languages, and interests, as well as contact information such as phone numbers and address.

The feature doesn’t seem to provide users with guidance on which areas to fill in, however, users who do not have a current city listed in their profile will see a prompt on the front of their Timeline under the profile photo. In early 2011, Facebook did something similar with a sidebar module asking, “Which city do you live in?” These modules encourage users to provide more personal information in their profile, which also affects the profile completion percentage. It is likely the suggested current city comes from a user’s IP address, or possibly their listed place of work, recent check-ins or post geotags.

These profile details are very important when it comes to the targeting options present for Facebook marketers. It is in Facebook’s best interest to have more users with a high completion percentage as it creates even more value as a marketing channel. The more complete a user’s profile, the more likely they will be able to be reached by hyper-relevant ads.

This completion percentage is similar to Facebook’s account security status in the way that it prompts users to take action. Both of these completion bars are dependent on the amount of information provided by the user.