Facebook begins rolling out Timeline for pages on mobile devices

Facebook has started to bring the Timeline design for pages to its mobile versions this week, more than four months since it introduced the new layout for desktop.

We haven’t seen Timeline for pages on our own devices, but a reader in Australia sent us the screenshot to the right. The design now includes a page’s cover photo, more information from the About section, and new icons to view a page’s photos and details about its fan base. In the iPhone app, pages also feature a larger Like button, spanning across the width of the screen. On the mobile web, some pages have a smaller Like button because the page also includes the Message button, which hasn’t been brought to the native app yet.

Timeline for personal profiles rolled out on mobile at about the same it launched on desktop, but the design for pages has taken much more time. These changes make the Facebook experience more consistent and could help improve conversions for mobile Sponsored Stories. Last month, ad optimization company AdParlor told us that the conversion rate of users who click a mobile Sponsored Story and then Like a page was lower than the average for desktop ads — 55 percent versus 72 percent. We suggested this might improve when Facebook updates its mobile site and apps to show pages in the Timeline format.

The addition of a cover photo and page description give users a clearer idea what the page is about and the larger Like button is a better call to action, though we might see Facebook experiment with where to place the button. Currently it gets a little lost under the About section and some users might be confused by the “Likes” tab, which also features the thumbs-up, but doesn’t allow a user to connect with the page by clicking it.

Cover photos do not appear as tall as they do for personal Timelines on mobile so as to leave room for more information below and to maintain a similar aspect ratio to what cover photos use on desktop. Pages should be aware, however, that the cover photo and profile photo are not aligned the same way as on desktop, so designs that integrate the profile image into the cover art will not appear as intended on mobile.

We haven’t heard back from Facebook about how widely today’s update has been released. Social media agency Jam wrote about the upcoming change to mobile pages on its blog on Monday, but when we asked Facebook about the news on Tuesday, a spokesperson provided the following statement, “We aren’t making any changes to mobile pages today, but we’re dedicated to making the experience on mobile consistent with that on desktop soon.”

For reference, here is what mobile pages look like without the Timeline design.

Thanks to Andrew Swan for the tip and screenshot of the new mobile pages.

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