How to Spring Clean Your Facebook Profile

When you think about spring cleaning, I’m sure cleaning up your Facebook profile is not the first thing that comes to mind. But it should be. Search engines make it very easy to find information about you, so you should present the best about yourself in case a job recruiter or even a potential love match may be looking. Because you never know who may be searching, you can take control of what information they will find.

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Make the Switch to Facebook Timeline

Screenshot of Facebook © 2012

Facebook is going to eventually make all users switch to the new Facebook Timeline. Preview your page in the Timeline view. Add a cover photo, highlight one of your Facebook posts, and delete or hide information you don’t want visible on your Timeline. Facebook gives you seven days to test Timeline before it makes it live for your connections to see.

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Update Your Facebook About Section

Screenshot of Facebook © 2012

When was the last time you looked at the “About You” section on your Facebook profile? If you can’t remember, then it is time you take a look. You might be surprised to see that your phone number is available. You can delete it or make it visible to only you. Remember that quote you found funny a few years ago? It has lost its humorous effect with time. You can add or delete quotes, and any information in your About section can be updated.

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Change your Profile Picture (or Cover Photo)

Screenshot of Facebook © 2012

The easiest thing you can change on your Facebook page that everyone will notice is your profile picture. No one wants his or her profile picture to resemble a mug shot. Find a new picture or take one and upload it. If you have already made the switch to Timeline, changing your cover photo also has a noticeable effect. Be fun and creative with your cover photo.

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Audit Your Posts

Screenshot of Facebook © 2012

When you post to Facebook, what do you share? Are you always posting the same type of content or talking about the same things? Keep your posts fresh and interesting. Photo and video posts always get more likes, comments and shares than random status posts. Be careful about what you post because there are some things you should never share on Facebook.

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Check Your Privacy Settings

Screenshot of Facebook © 2012

Who do you want to see the information you share on Facebook? Facebook allows you to customize your privacy settings. With the new Facebook Timeline you can also determine who sees your posts on a post-by-post basis.

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Reorganize Your Friends

Screenshot of Facebook © 2012

If your news feed is cluttered with information from people you are not closely connected or interested in, it is time to re-categorize or get rid of some connections. There are two ways you can do it. The first is to look at the list of all your friends and change the settings person by person. You can add or remove friends from lists, change what information from each person shows up in your news feed or unfriend the connection. This is the more thorough way to do it but it can also be very time consuming.

Another approach is to reorganize based on what appears in your news feed. You can look at what people are posting in your news feed and select to hide the individual post. You can also change if you receive every update from a person, most updates or only the important ones.

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Thorough Photo Assessment

Screenshot of Facebook © 2012

I listed this item last because it can be the most time consuming. First, review the photos you have uploaded to Facebook. Delete or hide any photos that might reflect badly on you. Also, if a photo is blurry or hard to see, delete it. The new Facebook Timeline can make a bad picture look even worse. Start with the most recent and work backwards. Next, review the photos that others have tagged you in and, where necessary, untag yourself. Last, but definitely not least, update your settings. You can choose which albums to make publicly available or hide. You can also change if people are allowed to tag you in their images.