Facebook is rolling out messaging features to the Pages section of the social network to allow businesses and customers to communicate privately.
Pages Messaging was revealed on the Facebook for Business blog, and is being presented as a better way for people and businesses to connect.
"There's a reason many people prefer to communicate with friends and family through private messaging: it's fast and convenient," Facebook said.
"And increasingly people want to communicate with businesses in the same efficient way. Over a billion people visit Pages every month looking for more information from businesses.
"Messaging has become a preferred communication channel for people, and now people and businesses on Facebook can start real-time conversations with each other in more ways."
The new feature allows businesses to include a Send Message button in adverts that appear in a user's Newsfeed, enabling people to send private messages to the Facebook Page of the business.
Admins of a business Page can reply to comments made by customers directly with a private message rather than post a public reply, and tools are provided to help admins rapidly respond to and track messages.
Facebook has also included the ability to create and save generic replies to messages. This allows Page admins to quickly pull up previous replies to common queries without needing to write a new message for each reply.
Furthermore, a rating badge can be displayed on a Page (pictured) so that visitors can see how responsive to messages a business is on Facebook.
"Pages that respond to 90 percent of messages and have a median response time of less than five minutes will now have a 'Very responsive to messages' badge on their profiles," said Facebook.
Facebook is on a mission to bolster the scope of messaging services it can offer to companies.
Businesses on Messenger was revealed in March, allowing users to start conversations with a company through the Messenger service rather than the main Facebook site or app.
Business-focused features are an indication of Facebook's move to evolve from a social network into more of a mobile developer platform.
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