November 27, 2010

Facebook Groups – a complete Guide

About a month ago I started getting really annoyed by the new Facebook Groups function as I was being added to virtually all kinds of e-mail lists, thus getting my inbox completely crammed with different messages from “friends” and other people who had decided I should join.

I truly hated this new feature that Facebook described as a completely new Groups product. I must say, I was completely wrong. If you set your privacy settings the correct way you can actually manage your groups really neatly and they work a lot greater than Google groups and other such e-mail lists I have found.

So what are Facebook Groups?

Facebook Groups is a new product from Facebook where they allow you to bundle friends into packs. You get to form your own communications networks and you are able to collaborate and communicate more effectively as a result. It is like a normal e-mail send list but with more social functionality. Sort of like the way a Skype group works, but with e-mail as well.

So what kind of Facebook Groups are there?

Well, there are virtually three types of Facebook Groups. Closed (default setting), meaning only the people invited by the group members can join. Secret, meaning no one but the people in the group can see it and finally Open, in which case anyone feeling like it can join the group and start posting.

You can change the setting of a group from either one of the three so if you start out as a secret group you can quite easily move it to become an open or a closed one. This is a great new feature which did not exist in the previous Groups package.

How do I create a Facebook Group?

You start out by going to the Facebook group landing ( page or navigate from your left hand navigation bar of your Facebook home page after login. In the image below you can see the yellow icon and the “Create Group” text next to it.

You click the “Create group” option and a pop up display is shown to you. You select a name for the group and add the participants to it. You also select whether or not the group should be Open, Closed or Secret.

1. Choose a name

2. Invite some friends

3. Set your privacy level

Your group is now created and you will be able to access it from the left hand navigation of your Facebook home page after login.

What can I do in a Facebook Group?

You can do virtually anything you could do in the previous version of the Facebook Groups, but now you have your e-mail connected to it in a much neater way and you also have the Facebook Group Chat connected to the members which means you can chat with everyone available in the group at once. Much like a Skype group chat.

You navigate your actions and activities from the top of the group and you join or setup a group chat from the right hand side of the group page.

The only problem I find with the last feature is that the chat window is really too small and if you are a couple of people able to type considerably fast, it creates a problem to keep up. I wish one could adjust the chat window height better than is possible today.

How do I edit my Facebook Group settings?

In the very top right corner of your group you have two options. Edit Group or Edit Settings. By clicking either one of these options you can edit the general settings of your Facebook Group as well as edit group members and name. The main difference between the two is that Edit Group is general to the whole group whilst Edit Settings are personal and for you only.

1. Edit Group

2. Edit settings

Are there any risks with using Facebook Groups?

Yes and no. You should always stay cautious towards new things on Facebook. Usually they have some kind of security bug at first. But with the help of great developers and a load of users, it usually sorts itself out after a while. Please read up on what some other bloggers have said about the risks.

What are the benefits of using Facebook Groups?

Well the benefits are many if you can handle the privacy settings correctly. If you’re working with link building you can create co-ordination groups to easily handle link trade, if you’re working with news and gossip you can easily reach out with your PR messages fast and furious, and if you’re just having fun you can have more fun in a group than by yourself. (yes I too used to think that it was the opposite.. but please… try sharing the fun and I promise you’ll wont be disappointed).

No seriously. For a business you might not want your employees chatting about what they do at the company through Facebook more than what is allocated to your Facebook Page. However, if you have a big organization that needs to share online content with each other than a FB group might do the trick.

Let’s say you’re in a position where you are launching a new product that you want the local teams to promote for you. Well then use a group. It is a much better place for a resource than the e-mail inbox. As long as it’s not confidential, go ahead and share it and let other users discover it whilst you solve a co-ordination problem.

For the gaming industry I find it highly useful as well. If you play any game where you need to keep track of old scores or of scenarios or tactics, a group is the place to store it.

What can I say… it is a GROUP… haha… nothing more nothing less. However, the chat functionality as well as the e-mail lists really bring these groups to another level.

Any question I haven’t answered I’ll gladly answer it in the comments.

Possibly related posts:
  • nek, April 15, 2012 Reply

    i make my group in facebook but the chat box is now hidden how i am show my all chat box to chat with all group

  • Elizabeth, April 16, 2012 Reply

    Hello, I know this post is old... but I have a question... If I posted in the group but then leave the group, is my post still on the group's wall...? I tried checking my activity list and my post wasn't recorded...

    And sorry if this was already mentioned on the article..

  • Asif khan, April 18, 2012 Reply

    I have a closed group of 350 membrs creatd by me a year ago .... The option 'Chat with group ' is disabled in it from last few month.... please tell me again how to chat with group members ...Plz mail me at

  • Mahammed Imran, April 18, 2012 Reply

    Hi..I'm an admin of my own created group. Is it possible to add the members for my group from other group members when they are not my friends or their names are not in my friendlist..?

    Please mail me:

  • Natata, April 25, 2012 Reply

    Can you please explain something to me? Let's say i'm a mamber of an open group,but none of my friends are members.Can they see my comments on their newsfeed?

  • Anurag Das, May 6, 2012 Reply

    Can You Help Please Help me Out Like I had created a Group..n now i had left that group n it was a private group n only the admin that's me could add other members but then i had left group and now i want to get back in the Group can u tell me how Please

  • Sharon Williams, May 8, 2012 Reply

    I see no way to change a group I started to private from open. No drop down list as shown or anything. Can it be done and would you explain please? Thank you!

  • Jose Carlos, May 8, 2012 Reply

    Is there any way to move photos between albums in Gropups?

  • KC, May 10, 2012 Reply

    So i created a group a couple weeks ago but I need to change the name of the group. It isn't letting me, how do I do that?

  • an FB fan, May 20, 2012 Reply

    If I post a comment (or a video or whatever) in an "open group" (of which I am a member), will my friends who are NOT members of that open group see my comment? Thanks.

  • sajib, May 21, 2012 Reply

    How can i change my group mail id of facebook?

  • Oluwatoyin olanrewaju salawu, May 24, 2012 Reply

    Pls how can i add an email to my group second is how can i add picture to my group.

  • zainab, June 7, 2012 Reply

    i have a group with members more than 250 .. i wanna change the privacy settings to closed but am not able to ... how can i do this plz?????

  • Ratnesh, June 15, 2012 Reply

    Is it possible in facebook groups to tag posts by keywords - or categorize the posts by topics - so that if any body wants to read all the posts related to a particular topic - they can easily do so.
    I am not talking about regular word search as that makes all posts with the word come up.

  • Gill Barrow, June 19, 2012 Reply

    Hi, I have a Facebook group page but I can't find out how to delete this type of post from the wall...

    "Gill Barrow added Joe Bloggs to the group"

    When I hover over it with my mouse, there is no "x" to click on to delete them and so I've got loads of them on the wall which just looks daft!

    Also is there something I can change in my notifications settings to make sure I don't get these in future?

    Thanks very much! Gill

  • Gill Barrow, June 19, 2012 Reply


    How can I delete old events from my Facebook group? I can't fathom out a way of doing it and I'm getting very frustrated.

    Some of the events are over a year old and I only want to have current ones on there.

    Can you help on this problem too? Many thanks, Gill

  • sahidan, June 26, 2012 Reply

    i’m having similar issues. i can’t change my “open” group to “closed” ....I have a group with 600 members. How is it possible..

  • Dakota, July 16, 2012 Reply

    I am a member of a group that is private and mistakenly added some new people to it. How can I remove them? I can't seem to find a way to do it.


    • Jesper Astrom, July 31, 2012 Reply

      Hey Dakota,

      There is no way to remove group members once they are active. However, you can ban them if they post something in the feeds. Ie. If they are just there, not doing anything, it is difficult to remove them, but if they say anything you can block them from further entry.

  • khalil jatt, July 24, 2012 Reply

    hiii i cant see my edit setting in my group plzzz help meeeee how i find edit settings

  • Nehal, August 21, 2012 Reply


    I got a question. I had a facebook group. I was the admin. I deleted myself by mistake. I wish to remove the other members and delete the group. How do I do that? Can you please let me know?

    Thanks so much !


  • Wondering, September 1, 2012 Reply

    Hey I am trying to send a poll in my group do you know how to do that ?

  • Suzelle, September 10, 2012 Reply

    How do I change or add a favicon to my fb existing group? I can't seem to find this answer anywhere. Thanks.

  • lauriets, October 8, 2012 Reply

    Help! I made a secret group for my family and I was the administrator. I thought I was deleting myself from the old group and dropped my secret group that I am admin for. how do I get back in?

  • nyfiken, October 27, 2012 Reply

    Hej, jag är medlem i en grupp där alla är administratörer. Någon av de andra tar bort mina inlägg, är det möjligt att se vem?
    undrar fundersam

    • Jesper Astrom, October 28, 2012 Reply

      Nope. Det går dessvärre inte att se :(

  • maggie maggie, March 21, 2013 Reply

    Nehal, go to the "members" of the group and delete each one of them, at the end, you delete yourself. That deletes the group also.

  • Bob Evans, June 25, 2013 Reply

    Help... I am trying to use the search tool in groups to find specific key words. I get no results even after using key words that I know are there. It used to work fine but for some reason quit working. I am trying to search keywords in groups that have items for sale. Such as "treadmill". When searching I get no results, even on a page that a treadmill is for sale. Any ideas?


  • Tachak Gerama, July 17, 2013 Reply

    Hey, can anyone tell me how to change group privacy from closed to open group? I know many admin from any group facing the same problem like me. They said, it was because the my group members already beyond 250 and it was possible for change it. But, i really want to change it in order to allow members in my group to approve and invite their friends. Why fb admin never try to overcome this problem. Pls..someone help me.

  • DD, July 19, 2013 Reply

    Hi, I have set up a secret FB group. I have recently discovered one of the group members has printed off details of every conversation on the group's page and given them to a third party. Is this protected in anyway - confidentiality laws or similar? Please help as someone is deliberately stirring things up.

  • Mary, July 29, 2013 Reply

    Hi Jesper my name is Mary i just created a fb group but my one doesn't look the same as yours, it show write a post, add photo/video,ask question,add file but it doesn't show link or docs plus if someone wants to join the group on the right hand side they can't see the join group. Is there something i'm doing wrong can you help me.

  • fred, August 3, 2013 Reply

    how can i hide groups entirely , and how can i restore it? all groups i mean not just one group because some one is forced to join me in groups that i dont want to join.

  • Bill Worthy, October 22, 2014 Reply

    How do I drop my name from the facebook group I started and assign it to someone else?

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