Ever notice some Facebook Pages have a Very Responsive badge? It’s because they do a really good job at initially replying to private fan messages.

The only downside is that it’s very hard to maintain a Very Responsive badge if you aren’t there managing your page all day.

However, you can increase your page’s message response time by setting an Away Message for your Facebook Page for up to 12 hours. People who visit your Page can see that you’re Away in the About section on the left side of your Page.

This week’s #SocialMediaMinute will cover how and why to set your Facebook Page’s messaging status to Away.

Keep in mind, this feature only works for Facebook Pages who have enabled direct messaging.

facebook away message, fb page away status

Learn more by watching the short tutorial video below.

Video Tutorial

How to set up your Facebook Page as Away

To set your messaging status to Away, first click Messages at the top of your Page. Then, just toggle AWAY on or off.

Basically this means, Messages received when your Page is Away aren’t included in your Page’s Response rate or Response time.

One last tip, if you’ve added business hours to your Page you have the option to automatically set your messaging status to Away when your business is closed. This option removes the hassle of having to manually do it but is limited to certain business categories.

To do so, just open your Messaging setting from within your Facebook Page options and locate the setting below Outside Business Hours.

Defining Response Rate and Response Time

  • Response rate is the percentage of new messages that your Page sends an initial response to on the day they’re received.
  • Response time is the average time it takes your Page to send initial responses to new messages in one day.

Keep in mind that:

  • Response rate and response time are based only on your Page’s first reply in a conversation, not follow-up messages in the same conversation that day.


In an article by Jay Baer on social media response time, 42 percent of consumers complaining in social media expected a response within 60 minutes. I expect that number to grow.

Not to mention, that’s pretty intimidating if you don’t already have a full-time community manager(s).

However, having a very responsive Facebook Page does have its benefits. For example, it’s more likely fans will engage or message a Page they know is responsive as opposed to one (a competitor) that isn’t. Besides, I’d rather have a fan message me directly with a complaint than make it public on my Page’s wall.

How responsive is your Facebook Page to fan messages? Will you be setting your Facebook Page as Away to improve your Response rate and Response time? Let me know in the comments below and make sure to come back next week for more social media tutorials.