Facebook has come a long way from a platform for college shenanigans and is undeniably playing a huge role in the way people around the world interact with each other. In fact, you don’t even have to do anything these days to appear like a pro. It’s scary, but something to think about. How will you stand out through the noise?
As of the first quarter in 2015, Facebook had 1.44 billion people actively using the platform each month. If Facebook were a sovereign state, it would be the largest in the world. As a company, you should be using Facebook to attract new customers and maintain existing relationships, but some businesses are using Facebook as their sole website. It’s free, user friendly, and is connected to billions, so why not?
There are varying degrees of websites as well as needs and purposes for each. There’s a rebuttal going around that website developers are pushing websites for small businesses because they’re in the business of, well, building websites. Sure, Paveya would love your business (see what I did there) and you’ll certainly see a return on investment, but that’s not the purpose of this post.
To take the stance there should be one or the other (Facebook or Website) makes it a black and white issue disregarding key components necessary to prosper in today’s economy. As a business owner, you’re putting yourself at a huge disadvantage if you don’t have a website and maintain it throughout each quarter.
According to the Pew Research Center, 66% of people primarily use social media to maintain connections with family and friends. So what are the Pros and Cons of having only a Facebook page for your business?
- It’s Quick. It’s Easy. And (for now) it’s free.
- You don’t need an IT staff or knowledge of HTML coding to add or edit content
- You can find your demographic and really hone your targeting on core, like-minded people
- Control you brand’s image
- Engage with current and potential customers through direct dialogue
- Direct marketing to core customers who will become promoters of your brand
- Maintain relevancy in your industry and in the social media world
- Reach isn’t what you think. You don’t have access to the billions of people on Facebook and with more competition comes limited attention
- If you’re a small business that could do online sales, how do you turn a ‘Like’ into a customer or profit without limiting it to visiting your brick-and-mortar?
- Facebook is making money off of your presence when you add a page. How are you profiting and making more off your own business? You’re doing all the work.
- Facebook is essentially a ‘middle man’ and you don’t have the same control you would on your own website.
- Read this
- Functionality may not be enough for small businesses, especially for those who require e-commerce.
- Websites provide credibility and respectability
- Websites can be tailored to your exact liking and stand on their own showcasing unique characteristics of your business
- You won’t have to compete in the already limited reach with videos of cats, or youtube videos of Kanye West singing Bohemian Rhapsody. (Yikes)
Now, take everything you just read and categorize it under Why you should have both. For everything Facebook isn’t, a custom website can pick up the slack and vice versa. Think of Facebook as a business’ distributor for their brand. In the digital marketplace, social media platforms act as half of the pie when it comes to online presence, getting the word out and attracting people. But after they’re attracted and convert to a lead, potential customers need a place to go that will allow you to close the sale.
In March 2015, Facebook added the ability to send money through Messenger. But currently, there is no significant E-commerce for businesses with Facebook pages. You can bet that’s going to change, but at what capacity and what control will the user (you) have on your products, pages, and profits?
For more information on similar topics, check out Paveya’s blog!