As of October 29th, Facebook has removed gray verification badges from pages.

The gray badge, similar to the blue verification badges many of us are more familiar with, was a symbol of authenticity for small- and medium-sized businesses. This was a company’s proof that their Facebook page was verified by the platform.

Facebook’s reasoning for the removal of the gray badges:

“We’re always working on better ways to help people understand more about the Pages they interact with. We introduced gray verification badges in 2015 to show which Pages for businesses and organizations are authentic.

However, we’ve found that they can be more confusing than helpful, so we’re removing them on October 29. As a result, there will no longer be a gray badge on [your business page]. This won’t impact the way the Page appears in search results.”

While Facebook believes gray badges may be confusing, authenticity for pages that once had them now becomes the issue. So, what does this mean to your brand if you lost the coveted verification symbol?

In short, brands will have to work harder to prove they are who they say they are and not an impersonator trying to scam readers. Facebook can’t accurately pin down how many fake or impersonator accounts there are among the more than 60 million active business pages on Facebook, but they estimate there are over 100 million fake profiles and business pages across the platform.

The gray badge was introduced in 2015 for businesses that weren’t large enough for the blue badge. To get the badge, pages had to go through the process of adding a publicly listed phone number, entering a code that was passed along through that phone number, sending documentation to Facebook such as a utility bill or business license and making sure that their pages were filled out in entirety.

So how do you show you’re authentic now? Be thorough and be prolific.

1. Make sure your page is filled out in its entirety, including:

  • Business categories
  • Physical address (if your business has one — if not, hide this field)
  • Profile picture and cover photo
  • Website address
  • Updated hours

2. Post regularly and post relevant content.

Posting content that gets your audience to engage helps show your brand’s authenticity. Depending on your business, effective forms of content to keep on your company’s proverbial horizon include:

  • News updates
  • Blog posts
  • Product posts
  • Photos or videos from company outings
  • Fan highlights

EVR works continuously with its clients to maintain their brand presence on Facebook and across a variety of social media platforms. If you have concerns about this new update affecting your brand, we can help. Shoot us an email at megans@evradvertising.com.